Not a nation of conquest

Posted: Sunday, September 07, 2003

I am a Marine forward-deployed in Djibouti, Africa. My home is Juneau.

I read Glen Ray's letter to the editor (Sept. 3) and it stuck to my soul the way the heat sticks to everything else about me here in Djibouti. There is little comfort I can offer Glen Ray except through validation of the same conviction your son has that what he is doing is right and true.

We are not a nation of conquest or vengeance or greed. The servicemen and women who have deployed overseas are seeking stability for our nation's sake, and engaging our enemy where he lives because for some inane reason he blames us - every breathing American - for his own inequities.

Whatever your misgivings about the reason for your son's deployment, make no mistake about his resolve - it goes all the way up the chain. We are at a high-water mark in this conflict, and it includes all of us because we Americans are the focus of the rage. The sentiments run much deeper than the cursory brush CNN or Fox coverage give them, and these sentiments will linger much longer than the California Recall, the Kobe Bryant Hour, or the current administration. Are we doing the right thing is a valid question, though I believe the more pertinent question at the moment is: Are we addressing the issue?

Jamie McDermott

Horn of Africa

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