We sleep soundly in our beds because rough men stand ready

Another item making the military rounds, it speaks volumns about what our military does for us.

Letter from Camp Doha

By Jeff Cole

We’ve been working round the clock on twelve-hour shifts cycling units up to the Kuwaiti border with Iraq. The units fly in with great regularity, are bused to Camp Doha (or to Arifjan), we issue them their vehicles, and in a matter of hours, they are off to their desert encampments.

I’m on night shift, 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. During the last four days, we have cycled through much of the 3rd Infantry Division (Mechanized) – The “Rock of the Marne” out of Fort Stewart, Georgia. Under the klieg lights of the hard stands – which are huge concrete grids for staging and issuing the vehicles – I’ve had the opportunity to ponder the nature of things.

The work is physical, and I’m reminded how old and out of shape this retired Marine has gotten. As I compare my own plight with that of the young Americans headed off to do what needs to be done, I can’t help but wish I was young again and feeling the vitality and camaraderie that are inherent to the deadly mission of combat.

This is not nostalgia for war. It’s nostalgia for the ranks; for the “campfire”; for doing something important. The chatter about verification and smoking guns and coalitions is mildly annoying to me. I sense in the determined young faces that America’s soldiers have no patience for the discussion. Though they might be uneasy trying to articulate it, I believe our men feel righteous indignation that anyone would challenge their purpose.

This is a volunteer Army. The sons of liberal elites and peace protesters are nowhere to be found. It is interesting that the Germans and the Canadians are laagered here at Camp Doha, enmeshed in the high command alongside Czechs and the ever-reliable Brits. But it is America that is under attack, and we need wait for no nation’s participation or approval to do what has to be done. The French, of course, are nowhere to be found.

Out under the klieg lights, another tank company draws its 60-ton Abrams tanks. All the young faces …. Their air journey from southeast Georgia was long and tiring – but you wouldn’t know it from the vigor and care with which they prepare their chariots of war.

They have a toughness about them which should reassure Americans, humble our reluctant “allies,” and instill fear in the hearts of terrorists wherever they hide or find sanctuary. I am reminded of George Orwell’s admonition: “We sleep soundly in our beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence on those who would do us harm.”

The company commander said to me, “Let’s get this over with so we can get back home. Let’s roll.”

It’s time for war.

Once the politicians figure out what they’re going to do, yes, it’ll be time for war.

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