Friday, July 17, 2009

Army Does the Fighting - Marines Get the Press

Again, the Marines grab all the press while the Army does most of the fighting and dying in both our wars! As of yesterday (17 July), there have been 552 Soldiers killed in Afghanistan while only 91 Marines, 48 Sailors and 47 Airmen have been killed there.

I would add that another 3142 Soldiers have also been killed in Iraq while 1019 Marines, 100 Sailors and 51 Airmen have been killed there.

On Wednesdays the Post publishes the names of the military dead for the week released by the Pentagon and this Wednesday 14 names were released: 11 Soldiers, 2 Sailors and 1 Marine but the Post didn't make it easy to detect this disparity.

The Army is doing a disproportionate share of the fighting and dying for this country in these two wars although I am delighted to see the Marines have decided to rejoin the fight in Afghanistan after having been "missing in action" for the past several years. As for Iraq, there are very few Marines left there and only one Marine has been Killed in Iraq since April while 42 Soldiers have been killed since then.

Every service member’s life is precious so I wouldn't diminish the death of a single one but let's put US Military Operations into a little perspective. Since 1983 we have been in combat in Grenada, Panama, two Wars with Iraq and Afghanistan and the US has lost about 5300 troops total. The causalities are about equal to 4 hours on Normandy Beaches, 19 days on Iwo Jima, December 1950 in Korea or the first 116 Days of 1968 in Vietnam -- or even a year on the streets of several US Cities. If this country can't stomach this level of commitment in exchange for greater homeland security, then I have serious concern for our long term liberty.