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Support for Troops in an Anti-war Environment

Many hold the opinion that the war in Iraq may have been unnecessary, but the fact remains that the U.S. military is there, and by the looks of things, they’ll be there for a while.

While it seems that Mills hasn’t had any of its students sent to Iraq, most of us are connected to someone who is or was there. Some of us are more closely tied to soldiers there; some of us only know the friend of a friend who is serving.

Having a loved one half way around the world is hard enough to deal with, imagine having people criticize them for something they really don’t have much control over.

Some people on this campus seem to jump on the issue of the war in Iraq without thinking of the soldiers and that they are people too. They seem to have trouble separating the concept that there are the people behind the war, and there are people that are in the war.

When we think of soldiers in Iraq, we seem to automatically think of vicious humans killing innocent people. This is simply untrue. Soldiers come from many backgrounds and hold many positions; they are not just there to fight.

Some of them are our parents. They are engineers. They are there rebuilding schools, constructing roads, bridges and dams. They are establishing much-needed sanitation systems and improving technology.

Some are medics and they spend their days repairing the wounds of both soldiers and Iraqi victims of violence. They put in tireless days trying to fix the tragedies of a harmful regime and a strong military occupation.

Some of the troops are chefs. They work around the clock to supply the troops with meals to keep them going. They put their hearts into the food they cook in the hopes that maybe one dish will remind the soldier of home.

A lot of people have loved ones in Iraq. They may be an aunt or a friend, a brother or a nephew, a girlfriend or a husband. The fact that many people on this campus make very harsh generalizations about the soldiers in Iraq can be extremely hurtful.

We can disagree with foreign policies and the dictations of our administration without condemning our troops.