When my generation was sent to Korea our orders were to contain the Communists. Communism was contained and has been for 50 years in Korea, and again, the blood of Americans ran red.
When Dave Stewart (Dec. 7 letter) and his generation were sent to Vietnam the orders were the same. Unfortunately communism was not contained. Yet again, the blood of Americans ran red.
Those proud old words "Land of the free, home of the brave" to some were no longer applicable.
We had boys doing everything under the sun seeking deferments, including getting a statement from psychiatrists that they were not fit for military service...
There were deferments if your wife was pregnant and then, if you knew someone, there was the National Guard. Dan "Chicken Hawk" Quayle, a Republican, knew somebody, so he rode out the Vietnam War in the Indiana National Guard.
George W. "Jet Jockey" Bush will become president and commander-in-chief this Jan. 20. Be assured, he knew somebody, too.
"Ex-speaker admits getting Bush in Guard": Article: Across the Nation, The Chronicle, Sept. 28, 1999.
Mr. Stewart says he honors the sacrifice of his friends killed in Vietnam, yet he defends Vietnam cowards and he wants me to crawl back under my rock.
I choose to stand. Just like I did with the men of the 8th Army 50 years ago this past August in South Korea when the order came, "Hold or die."
We experienced what the Founding Fathers experienced at the birth of this nation and the generation before me at Pearl Harbor, Wake Island, Bataan, Midway, Iwo Jima, Normandy, Bastogne. Freedom is a bloody business. It is not for the feint of heart or sustained by cowards.
I honor the legacy our Founding Fathers gave me with their blood and the World War I and II patriots with theirs. Honor, reinforced by the courage, blood and guts of the men of the 8th Army of 50 years ago.
Love of country to this American takes precedence over a political party. Man or boy. I honor Vietnam veterans. I don't honor cowards. To those who think George W. Bush was a fighter pilot should think again. He was nothing more than a "jet jockey" in the Texas Air National Guard in Texas. The Viet Cong were not in Texas, they were in Vietnam.
Richard D. Renew, Martinez