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Mankato Area Peace Coalition
Weekly Voices

Mankato Area People for Peace Voices

Supporting our troops

Submitted by Ted Downey

The war has started, and I hope that the generals and war planners are correct in their battle plans and that their strategies exceed their most optimistic expectations. Yet for some time I have doubted the claim that belligerence will make the world safer for our country. I believe that that violence begets violence. In this case I hope I am wrong in this assessment.

I noticed that our American flags flying in support of our
troops. But I question why they are at full staff when our troops are experiencing death. Are those who die fighting for
our country any less deserving of acknowledgment than our astronauts and political leaders?

I have put my flag at half-mast in recognition of those who have paid and will pay the ultimate price in support of our country. But I'd rather not have to. I'd rather support our troops by not forcing them to face death in such a manner. This we can do by discussing and implementing more creative
ways of resolving disputes than by placing our young men and women in situations where they must kill or be killed.

Instead of thinking of armies as machines of destruction, let us
create troops for peace. Let us arm them with food, medicines, clean water, engineering skills, and our wonderful technologies in order to build up rather than destroy.
Most likely we will win this battle in
Iraq. Let us hope it is quick. But let us not fool ourselves that this means of¬  settling¬  disputes will achieve a lasting peace.

Let us resolve to stop this cycle now. Let us resolve never again to have to sacrifice the lives of our young people. Instead, let us resolve to use our great wealth and good spirit to enhance the lives of all peoples around the world in a shared community of the planet.

Ours is a world of nuclear giants and ethical infants. We know more about war than we know about peace,more about killing than we know about living. We have grasped the mystery of the atom and rejected the Sermon on the Mount." ‚ General Omar Bradley

"To engage in war is always to pick a wild card. And war must always be the last resort, not a first choice. I truly must question the judgment of any president who can say that a massive, unprovoked military attack on a nation which is over fifty percent children is 'in the highest moral traditions of our country.'" - U.S. Senator
Robert F. Byrd

"If you believe that all men are created equal, then a child's death in some other country is no less tragic than in the United States." -
Bill Gates

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