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Pro Deo Et Patria- An Army Chaplain

I am a chaplain in the US Army, serving in Iraq. I'm keeping a blog to share my thoughts and experiences while deployed. They are my thoughts and they don't necessarily reflect the opinions of the US Army! :)

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Back Online

It's been a while since I posted. We have been on communications black out- those of you in the military will know why. For those of you who have emailed me: we haven't been able to email until now, so I'm not ignoring your emails! I want you all to know it's good it is a great feeling to have so many people praying for me, and for all of the troops.

We are getting action quite a bit here, so it has kept me busy. Our soldiers are doing a great job, and working with the soldiers in this Armored Battalion makes me even more proud of the work they are doing. Suffice it to say that I cannot talk about details or operations online, but I will say this: militarily, we are winning, hands down. There is no one that can push us out of Iraq. The types of attacks the insurgents are using stems from an inability to attack our military directly, so it means mortars shot from cars, IEDs, and similar tactics. But a war cannot be lost by these means.

However, while we cannot be pushed from Iraq, we can be pulled from Iraq. What is amazing to me is that most (not all, of course, but the vast majority I speak with) of our soldiers serving over here are proud of their work, and feel that we are making a real difference. They are willing to lay their lives down for this cause, for our nation. What is interesting is that it is the people at home that are growing tired of this war. And this war cannot be won without the people at home. It isn't just the military that will get this done.

I want to encourage everyone reading this to take time to pray for the people of Iraq. They are humans, created by God, and we need to pray that democracy and freedom can take root over here. And we need to ask if we are willing to help make it happen!

4 Comments:

Anonymous Daryl Leffler said...

Thanks Chris for the updates... Kathy and I are keeping our troops and Iraq citizens in our prayers.... Please also remember and lift up in prayers the families affected by the Deadliest War In The World, the conflict in Congo which has killed 4 million people since 1998. Although this is not a well covered issue in America, millions of God's children have been affected by this disaster....

Thanks Chris,
Daryl

3:02 AM  
Anonymous shelley said...

SOOOOO glad you are back on line! I was getting worried. I know worry is fear that hasn't said it's prayers however, I have been praying! Thanks for taking the time to update us.

5:10 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

During the middle of the Civil War, Union citizens wanted out, especially during the time of the drafting in New York. Think about where we would be now if Lincoln would have listened to the public outcry and pulled out of the south; war is a bleakly pragmatic thing. Of course with Iraq, as well as our involvement with other countries, we are talking on global, as opposed to domestic scales (i.e. Civil War).


We are living in a time of unprecedented media coverage and cynicism. People are getting their information from one medium without checking around for other sides to the story. Listen to the soldiers, listen to NPR, listen to FOX, listen to CNN. Make up your own damn mind. For God sakes don't form your opinions from Jon Stewart (as I, personally, are aware some are doing).


We are also trying to change a mindset, a hatred, that has been inbred for thousands of years. What our troops, and our military friends, are trying to do, good or bad, is get those three groups that hate each other (Sunis, Shi'ites, Kurds) to stop killing each other and to begin working together to form a functioning democracy. That is a horribly difficult task, and Americans, with our horribly small attention spans think that if something doesn't work overnight (i.e. laxatives, cold medications, the list goes on and on...bad analogy, I know, I know) it doesn't work. It takes time.


Now, I'm sure Chris will correct me in some of my details because I am not the historian he is. But my point remains the same: our efforts take time. We have an opportunity to change things and make the world a better place to live in. Maybe that is a naive way of looking at it, but you can only talk to the playground bully so much until you have to take him out: knock his block off, send him to detention, or send him off to a different school.


I am proud of our husbands, brothers, fathers, sons who are sacrificing so much to be over there.


Also, please keep the families at home in your prayers. Even more so than in your prayers, be pro-active - most will not ask for help. I'm speaking specifically for those with babies and very small children. At our church, LCC, there are several. Take a look, find out exactly who they are, seek them out and make an effort. To help alleviate a little worry that their families are "okay" is one very important way to support these soldiers.

6:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

WOW--where would we be right now if Lincoln would have listened to public opinion and got out of the Civil War?

What an interesting question and one I simply cannot let pass without a bunch of comments.

First, in my opinion, the civil was was NOT about slavery, it was about federal control of states--ie states rights. The south pretty much believed that certain issues were delegated to the federal government and EVERY thing else was given to the states.

In my opinion, the South was correct. Prior to the civil war, when one said The United States of America it was plural. After the war, it was singular.

Interesting enough, Lincoln only freed the slaves being held by the South--not all slaves. In fact, at one point he agreed to slavery in totality if it would preserve the union.

No, I think that perhaps had Lincoln listened to the public opinion, we might not have the constitutional crisis we have today. The federal government probably wouldn't be as mixed up in our lives as it is.

But, does that mean I think we should cut and run in Iraq? Absolutely not. In many respects--we are to Iraq as France was to us in the Revolution.

The US needs to stay the course in Iraq. We owe that to them to finish the job we correctly started in the first place.

But, I don't think this should be compared to our revolution.

PS

2:37 AM  

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