They continue to march into America's longest war and if they survive they return to us shattered and broken. We make them prosthetic limbs, counsel them, and prescribe drugs and yet there is no remedy for the wounds they suffer and no pill to make the sounds, sights, and smell of war go away.
Yet, we go on building memorials to those who fight and die and we promise to care for them and to recall their glorious deeds.
Shall we build another wall or enshrine the likeness of our youth in another bronze statue? No object will be erected this time that will honestly reflect the error of our ambition or justify the purpose of the present slaughter? No object will explain, justify, or give proper tribute to the broken men and women, the flag-draped caskets, or the graves around which gather the mothers and fathers, wives and daughters.
Perhaps we ought to gather all the tears that have been, and are being shed. Yes, a sea of tears to recall the misery and the dreams so terribly shattered. But where shall we find a chalice large enough? When will it stop? Bring our troops home now.
Norm Olson, Nikiski
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