Vets on the Hill 2
Well it has been a few weeks since the event in DC, but I just know have a chance to write about the event. This time the event was much larger and more successful then last Sept. Luckily no one was assaulted this time! Well the best place to start would be on Sunday and move on from there:
The event got kicked off with the state captains getting together in the hotel bar for a few drinks and to sit around and tell old war stories and talk about the events going on for the weekend, and hopefully how events might play out over the course of the next year. We then took a ride on the Vets for Freedom bus to dinner at an awesome Italian place. On the bus I was lucky to meet a guy that by all means every red blood American should met: Uncle Jimbo from Blackfive
The dinner was awesome, after dinner a group of us got a lovely tour of Virginia and Maryland trying to get to a party that was being thrown by Army Aviation Society. Its was at some new club that was in Maryland, hence the tour of Maryland and Virginia, the cabbies didn’t know where this place was. After the party we went to another bar to finish the night off, so all in all it was a fun and entertaining night. The next morning was somewhat interesting, having a hang over and trying to put together over 400 packets for all of the Veterans that were coming into town for the event. Afterwards we were able to catch up on some sleep and meet the delegates from our states as they came in.
Monday night wasn’t as much fun as Sunday, well at least not for me. A group of us had a nice dinner at Ruth Chris, then afterwards went to the hotel bar to mingle with everybody. Having leaned my lesson from the event last Sept I knew that I needed to get all of my things together because it was going to be an early morning. So i turned in early just to stay up to watch the Memphis Tigers give the national championship to Kansas, so like i said it wasn’t as much fun as Sunday.
Tuesday morning started out really really early with a breakfast. At the breakfast we had former head of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Myers speak at our breakfast, then we had the Georgetown Mens Basketball Coach, Coach John Thompson III. We also had the low down for the events of the day given to us by Pete Hegseth and Joel Arends of VFF. After breakfast we all load the buses to take us to Union Station were we all walked together to Upper Senate Park for the rally that was being held. During this rally we had the fortunate to hear from Sen McCain, Sen Lieberman, Sen Graham, and many more Senators and Congress Persons.
After the rally the over 400 veterans from all 50 states went to the hill to meet with our Senators and Congressman and talk to them about the fight going on in Iraq and Afghanistan. we asked them all to listen to the testimony of Gen Petraeus on the hill ans to let the troops on the ground keep the fight going and to “Let them Win!”
I was fortunate to have a face to face meeting with Senator Lincoln of Arkansas and with Congressman Boozman, Arkansas 3rd District congressman. The first meeting was with Congressman Bozzman, he has been a full supported of the troops in Iraq and a supporter of the mission in Iraq. I spoke with him in Sept. This meeting I was lucky to have one of the founders of VFF to join me, Mark Seavy, better know as TSO at Sniper
After the meeting ith Boozman, I had a meeting with Sen Lincoln’s office. The meeting went on for about 10 minutes with myself and with Sen Lincoln’s veterans affair person. After about 10 minutes the Sen joined us, even thought it was for a short period of time, she manged to make it very clear to me that she does not support the mission in Iraq, nor does she support the troops like she claims she does. Her and I had a heated discussion about the events in Iraq and how in my eyes, and the eyes of the commanding General of Iraq the surge was and is working in Iraq and how the government of Iraq have also made political gains even thought the Democrats say they haven’t. Sen Lincoln’s main stance was that the political gains weren’t being made, which I had to inform her that not only they were being made but I had to give the examples of what was being done. O course she wanted nothing to do with that, even after I told her that the Iraqi government was able to do something that not even her or the other 99 senators and 435 Congresspersons were not able to do, that make a balanced budget. Well after that I could tell she was getting heated, and I was as well, so to be the better person I told her that we will have to agree to disagree. After that meeting I had a long trip to the airport and home, and during that trip I was thinking about something the Sen said to me that stuck out like a sore thumb: ” I fully support our troops, i will make sure they have what they need, but the surge is not working and we need to leave now”. Now let me get into this statement in greater detail.
How can a person in the same breath say they support the troops but then say the same troops they “support” aren’t getting the job done? Is it me or does that sound idiotic? To support the troops means to give them everything thy need to fight, everything they need to survive while fighting, and to give them 100% support here at home. Support isn’t saying you support them and then turn around and play arm chair general from the comfort of your air conditioned office in DC and try to put a time table on when the troops should come home. All that does is play into the hands of the enemy and gives them hope that we will turn and run with our tails between our legs. It gives the enemy the support they need to continue to fight because the people that we elect to make the laws and to keep Americans safe are in fact acting in a way that can be compared to Treason against this country. It is up to every American over the age of 18 to look at the issue at hand and make the correct decision on who they vote for.
I will get off of my soap box now and thank the other person from Arkansas that attended the event with me, Mr. Wayne Bowen. I would like to thank him for taking time out of his busy schedule and go to DC. Hopefully at the next event the Arkansas Chapter will have a bigger and better showing.