A Brief Note Regarding Our Priorities

At church recently, they’ve been asking us to “Pray for those caught in the crossfire of war.” OK, sure — but where is your prayer for the Americans who are over there fighting?

Yes, it’s tragic when innocent people become the victims of armed conflict — and indeed they deserve our prayers — but many people seem oblivious to the fact that we’re fighting a war. Yes, I understand. Who could possibly focus on Afghanistan with Lady Gaga getting thrown out of the Yankee locker room?

Here are some people who get it. They lined the roads in Lake George yesterday to honor Spc. Benjamin D. Osborn, who died doing his job in Afghanistan last week.

I think all of us can find time to read one story about Iraq or Afghanistan every day. I wouldn’t dare tell you what to think about it, just to think about it. If you’re really ambitious, pick up a copy of Sebastian Junger’s new book, War. Junger, who wrote The Perfect Storm, spent a significant amount of time embedded with an Army platoon fighting in Afghanistan’s Korengal Valley. It’s stunning.

The book is a companion to the documentary Restrepo, made by Junger and his photographer Tim Hetherington. The film will be screened on July 6 at the New York State Museum— and Hetherington will be on hand for a discussion afterward.  Here’s the trailer — and the NY Times review.


UPDATE: Since writing this, we learned of another local soldier killed in Afghanistan, David Taylor Miller of Saratoga Springs.

11 thoughts on “A Brief Note Regarding Our Priorities

  1. While I emotionally (and financially) support our military members, are these really “wars'” worth fighting? Afghanistan seems like a lost cause, an uneducated population of desert people, and the “war” in Iraq just an unjustified action against false causes. This is why average people like myself have a hard time keeping interest in military actions going on. A lot of people are joining the military for personal (rather than political or ethical) reasons; the economy is terrible and finding college money is very difficult. Is it worth risking your physical and/or emotional life? I sincerely believe it takes a huge amount of personal bravery to risk both of the aforementioned, but have to wonder if our government has the same concern for our country’s young adults. I believe efforts would be better spent on actions right here or at international airports.

  2. Thank you, Rob, for bringing this to our attention. I am a proud Blue Star Mother and the wife and daughter of veterans.

  3. My prayers and tears go out to these to families… I cannot even comprehend the grief they are experiencing.

  4. Thanks Rob. We should always keep our troops in mind. If you want your one story per day, I friended or fanned or whatever you call it, the Facebook group: ISAF: NATO forces in Afghanistan. They tlk about a lot of the positive stuff that doesn’t get reported, as well as the military stuff.

    @Hopeful: Thank you to your child and your spouse and your dad. Our house should join/participate in Blue Star; we already have the flag.

  5. Well said, Rob. We talk about the casualaties of war but it rarely seems to be discussed about the long-term mental affects of serving when common sense will tell you that it has to be traumatic to fight in a war.

  6. Also keep in mind, our men and women fighting over there signed up of their own free will. That to me makes them even more heroic.
    and not to pick a fight but: LaurieB..would Afganistan be worth it if the people were Educated City people?

  7. Prayers for all people who are away from their homes and their loved ones due to wars worldwide, whatever side they may be fighting for may they all be able to be with their own families soon.

  8. I pray everyday, for those I know and those I don’t. My niece and many friends of ours children are over in IRAQ and Afganistan. Yes they signed up, but so should you in your support of them. Letters and care packages go a long way, remember those serving, those that have served and those that have lost “our” fight.

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