Monday, May 31, 2010

Memorial Day With Doug Tudor

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On this Memorial Day we want to dedicate DWT to the voices of some of the Blue America candidates who have, at least in part, come to their political beliefs based on their service in the U.S. military. Doug Tudor is running for the open seat in Florida's 12th district, mostly Polk and Hillsborough counties east of Tampa/St. Pete. He was born in Cincinnati, grew up in Kentucky and joined the U.S. Navy after high school. He has an outstanding military record and we feel he would make an equally outstanding member of Congress. We endorsed him and have urged Blue America supporters to help him raise money to battle the two conservatives he has to face, a Blue Dog Democrat and an off-the-cliff Republican. Below has has shared his ideas about what Memorial Day has come to mean in his life:

Memorial Day, first called Decoration Day, has long been used to pay tribute to those Americans who died serving our country in the military. It has evolved into honoring all of those veterans who are no longer with us, even those who have died of old age. I hope it continues to evolve into something even more meaningful. 

I hope someday that we will use Memorial Day to not only pay tribute to those Americans who died serving our country in the military, but also to come together once a year as a country to rededicate ourselves as a nation opposed to wars. I believe the best way we can honor those who have fallen on the field of battle is to work our very hardest to ensure that no others have the same fate.
 
Readers of DownWithTyranny know I am a retired Navy Master Chief, and they know I spent my career on the frontlines in the war against terrorism. From Beirut in 1983, to the Red Sea in 1993, to my over 30 deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan before my retirement in 2008, I have lived my adult life serving the Navy’s core values of “Honor, Courage, Commitment.”  

Over the course of this Memorial Day, nearly all politicians and candidates will fall over themselves claiming how much they respect the fallen, honor our veterans, and support our troops. Few of them will follow up with any discussion of how they will actually protect the veterans from an underfunded Veterans Administration, multiple deployments, never-ending and unsustainable warfare, and lives of uncertainty based on campaign cycles. This must stop. 

To me, “Honor, Courage, Commitment” means I must have enough honor to speak the truth to power; to have the courage to question the leaders of my party; and the commitment to stand strong enough to do my part to end the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. As I did throughout my career in the Navy, you can count on me to stay true to these three core values. 

This Memorial Day, as I do every Memorial Day, I will attend a service to honor the fallen. This Memorial Day, as I have for the past three Memorial Days, I will carry forward a political campaign to truly honor those who have served America in uniform… as well as those who are serving and who will serve. My brothers and sisters in arms deserve my utmost “Honor, Courage, and Commitment,” and they will receive it.


UPDATE: A Poem

Howie here and I want to add a poem to Doug's post. I just heard it recited by the son of a vet who found it among his father's papers recently. It's very moving, as you're about to see:
Murder So Foul

I shot a man yesterday
And much to my surprise,
The strangest thing happened to me
I began to cry.

He was so young, so very young
And Fear was in his eyes,
He had left his home in Germany
And came to Holland to die.

And what about his Family
were they not praying for him?
Thank God they couldn't see their son
And the man that had murdered him.

I knelt beside him
And held his hand--
I begged his forgiveness
Did he understand?

It was the War
And he was the enemy
If I hadn't shot him
He would have shot me.

I saw he was dying
And I called him "Brother"
But he gasped out one word
And that word was "Mother."

I shot a man yesterday
And much to surprise
A part of me died with Him
When Death came to close
His eyes.

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6 Comments:

At 8:23 AM, Anonymous Francine said...

I support Doug Tudor for Florida Congressional District 12, and hope you will too! http://TeamTudor.org

Doug is an voice of careful thought, reasoning and understanding. He is not one to just be a voice saying what others want him to say, he spends his spare moments thoroughly researching and coming to his own conclusion based on such investigation, as well as listening, AND HEARING, all sides of an issue.

 
At 10:25 AM, Anonymous WALTER OROURKE said...

There is no closer bond than to have been in combat defending your own and others lives.
War is Hell! There is no greater reason to have Peace than to have faced that Hell and want none of it again for any other human on this or any other planet. To work to prevent war is a greater calling than to bravely beat your chest far in the safty of Washington by 'Chicken Hawks' who never served on the battle lines nor even joined the service.
I fully support Doug Tudor in his quest to bring reason, thought, skill and knowledge to the office of US House Dist. 12 for Florida.
No one is better qualified nor capable for this office and trust.

 
At 5:00 PM, Anonymous Bil said...

Righton Walter!

Sorry to invoke the memory, but does everybody remember the largely sissy hawk cabinet The Decider (awol in the Texas Air National Guard ONLY to escape the draft) had with the exception of Colin Powell? Axis of Evil SissyHawks Bush2, Cheney, Rumsfeld...

 
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