People who know me, know I am a numbers person. The 10th mountain division is really getting beat down in Afghanistan right now. It breaks my heart to see the Walter Reed bus go to pick up more soldiers. I have watched the bus leave everyday now for several days. But here are a few numbers I am thinking of.
OFFICIAL DoD COUNT OF:
Troops Killed in Iraq: 4464
Troops Killed in Afghanistan: 1668
Wounded in Action: 44923
As of Jan 22, 2011
Out of the 44,923 over 900 of those are amputees. Chaz is only one. One of out of over 900, yikes!! Then that's only 900 out of over 44,000, holy moley!! There are so many out there that have moved on and there are some that are just getting started. It breaks my heart every time I learn of a new wounded warrior.
We may judge the people of Afghanistan and Iraq and look down upon them, but they have the advantage over us. The use of the IED is a brilliant war technique. (Please note I am not saying it is right, I am just saying that in the art of war it is quite intelligent). Our soldiers are just walking or driving along and poof it strikes without warning. Instantly the ripple begins. It starts with the soldier, then hits his team, then the squad, the platoon, the company, the battalion and then the division. At the same time, the report goes to the next of kin and the next ripple begins. Let's face it, these people know what they are doing. You may not want to admit it, but it's true. Their IEDs are not designed to kill because that one takes out one player of the game. They are designed to injure. Our soldiers are brothers and sisters at war. If one of them is injured, they will pull guard and get them aide. It takes at least a four man team to help one solider. Two to move the guy to safety and two to pull guard. So they took at least five not one out of the game. They know our weakness. Unfortunately to them our loyalty to each other is a weakness and they capitalize on it.
What upsets me the most is that the news reports the fatalities, but what about our injured. Did you know prior to this blog the numbers I posted? I didn't. I feel that the dialog needs to be stepped up a lot. I was happy to take my family to Capitol Hill multiple times because our elected officials need the reminder of the consequences of their actions. I'll do it again and again if given the chance. Our elected officials need to get their butts over to Walter Reed and Bethesda and every other military hospital and thank these guys. I have cards from the ones who have. We are on a first name basis with the ones who come frequently. When we met Senator Corker and Alexander (both from TN) I told them that I was sad we had to come to the Hill to see them. Oh yes, folks I am not afraid to give them a nice reminder. And yes I threw in the I voted for you guilt trip too. I know they are busy, but it needs to be a part of their job. I told Bernie Sanders (Vermont) he needs to go and not just send his aides. The aides are nice too, but the elected official needs to make the time to go. Senator Jack Reed (RI) has totally impressed me. He truly cares for our guys. I can sniff out fake quick and trust me Senator Reed is anything but. He is a truly great man!
Take a moment today and see what makes the news. I am pleased to report that when we went home to TN Chaz made the lead story on 3 out of 4 channels. Trace Adkins' home burning beat him out of one top spot. But ABC, CBS, NBC and Fox showed Chaz's homecoming on each broadcast (the 5, 6 and 10). The stories were all great and it made me proud to be from TN. Our news stations could pick a different soldier and their family every night and could bless our country with incredible stories of faith, perseverance and courage. I get to witness these stories everyday thanks to all the great people we have met. Chaz and I get giddy when another soldier and family make the news. That's why you'll see me post them.
Our military hospitals are filled with tremendous stories. But it seems that some of us are too celebrity focused and are too busy worrying about little things that are really so small. This morning Carrie Underwood's song So Small popped into my head. I thought you know my family is on a really hard road right now, but I am thankful that Chaz and I can see that this is just what we have been given and we are going to make the best out of it. If we can take this mountain and make it small others can do the same. You just need the will and faith to make it happen. Remember if you cannot fix it with your hands it is not your problem to fix and you need to give it to God. He will sort it out with faith and patience.
No matter what please make sure you pray for these guys and gals everyday. They need it. Some don't even know you are doing it. But God is listening so keep your dialog going with Him. I shall step off of my soapbox now! Have a great day! :)