Four Thousand

“We cannot live only for ourselves.
A thousand fibers connect us with our fellow men.”
– Herman Melville


Over the course of two months in early 1945, more than 26,000 of our bravest sons, brothers and fathers were either killed or wounded or went missing as American forces clashed against the Japanese on Iwo Jima, an island of still-questioned strategic importance.

Of those 26,000 brave men who were killed, wounded or went missing, more than 6,800 paid the ultimate price.

I don’t bring this up to belittle, in any way, the 4,000 men and women who have been killed in Iraq. In truth, even one is far too many. Instead, I bring this up for perspective.

The men and women who fight under the American flag now are no less brave than those who charged hillsides and ran through trenches in 1945, or any other time for that matter. Nor do they fight any less to preserve the freedoms taken for granted by those who throw the “4,000″ number around like political currency.

The Second World War claimed 407,316 American lives over a four year span. These were kids, just like today, who fought and died for America so we could live on. These were kids, just like today, who fought and died so America could prevail over a radical ideology that wished nothing less than our destruction.

By the way that the mainstream media parades the death toll around with a feigned pallor, you would think that they were more interested in the human aspect of 4,000 dead mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters, sons and daughters than the political ramifications, but no. Instead of showing the courage displayed by all of our fighting men and women, instead of highlighting the work that has been done, the mass graves that have been closed forever, they use the death toll as an excuse to dust off pundits not seen since the toll had reached 3,000 and ask questions like, “what effect, if any, do you think that the milestone will have upon Barack Obama’s chances in Pennsylvania?”

So, instead of paying attention to the hidden glee among the media elites when the number is proclaimed across the airwaves, perhaps we can use this opportunity to remember these 4,000 kids and their families–as well as those who still serve and the families who serve with them–in our nightly prayers.

God bless America, and may all of those brave men and women rest in peace.

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