Philly Blogger in Afghanistan
The New York Times
"The men and women who serve in our military have won for us every hour we live in freedom, sometimes at the expense of the very hours of the lifetimes they had hoped to live." Bob Riley
I discovered a fellow Philadelphia Blogger today through the New York Times. That's him above. He's a sailor serving in Afghanistan, an extraordinary young man in many ways. And, as it turns out, a gifted communicator.
The NYT Blog section featured an edited posting from his blog which they headlined, Response to Readers: Don't Judge Me. In it, Anthony McCloskey makes an articulate case for patriotism, freedom, military service, responsibility and accountability.
Here's a sample from McCloskey's blog:
I am not ashamed. Not of my service. I am sometimes ashamed of decisions my government makes, and I am sometimes ashamed of things that Americans do or don't do, but I have never been, and will never be ashamed of serving my country. I do what I do because I believe in service to the greater good. The American military does not make policy, we enforce it. If a citizen of the United States does not like what we are doing, then it is the responsibility of that citizen to ensure that policy changes are made. Please don't blame us. We are over here because we love our country and what it stands for.Read Navy Petty Officer First Class Anthony McCloskey's blog for yourself. War in the SandBox... (If you get an Error Message page, just click on bypass this message.)
Be prepared for a shockingly intimate portrait of life and death in the killing fields of Afghanistan. And for painfully insightful feelings, musings and stories on home, family, fear, children, poverty, nightmares, war and hope. As a mother, as an American, as a human being, a lot of it had me in tears.
Those of us who grew up during the war in Vietnam remember that for the first time in history television brought the grim images of war directly into people's living rooms. Who could have imagined the scope of the Internet and its Blogs ... allowing us to read a serviceman's personal stories direct from the front and in real time. It's a miracle and a horror. And we have a responsibility to respond.
I plan to become a regular reader of Anthony McCloskey's blog. To see how he's doing. To get a much needed reality check whenever I think my life's too hard. To thank him for the humanitarian work he and his colleagues are doing.
And I plan to make regular comments.
To let him know we support him and his fellow servicemen regardless of our sentiments about the politicians who put them in harm's way. To remind him we voted many of those politicians out of office in November.
Most important, I want to tell Anthony McCloskey we hope and pray that he and all servicemen and women will come home safely and soon.