Letters to the Editor

Troop support

November 21, 2007


To the editor:

Walter Reed Army Medical Center officials want to remind those individuals who want to show their appreciation through mail, including packages, letters and holiday cards addressed to "Any Wounded Soldier" or "A Recovering Wounded Soldier" that Walter Reed can not accept these letters and packages. This is in support of the decision by then Deputy Undersecretary of Defense for Transportation Policy in 2001. This decision was made to ensure the safety and well being of patients and staff at medical centers throughout the Department of Defense.

In addition, the U.S. Postal Service is no longer accepting "Any Service Member" or "A Recovering American Soldier" letters or packages.

Instead of sending an "Any Wounded Soldier" letter or package to Walter Reed, please consider making a donation to one of the more than 300 nonprofit organizations dedicated to helping our troops and their families listed on the "America Supports You" Web site (www.americasupportsyou.mil).

Other organizations that offer means of showing your support for our troops, wounded service members and their families include the USO (www.usocares.org) and the American Red Cross (www.redcross.org).

For individuals without computer access, your local military installation, the local National Guard, or military reserve unit in your area may offer the best alternative to show your support.

Walter Reed will continue to receive, process and deliver all mail that is addressed to a specific individual.

Julie Throne,



monkeyhawk 10 years, 2 months ago

SGT. Edmund John Jeffer's last few words were some of the most touching, inspiring and most truthful words spoken since the tragedy of 9/11 - and since our nation went to war. SGT. Jeffers was a strong soldier and talented writer. He died in Iraq on September 19, 2007. He was a loving husband, brother and son. His service was more than this country could ever grasp - but the least you can do for the man who sacrificed his life for you ... is listen to what he had to say.

Hope Rides Alone By Eddie Jeffers I stare out into the darkness from my post, and I watch the city burn to the ground. I smell the familiar smells, I walk through the familiar rubble, and I look at the frightened faces that watch me pass down the streets of their neighborhoods. My nerves hardly rest; my hands are steady on a device that has been given to me from my government for the purpose of taking the lives of others. I sweat, and I am tired. My back aches from the loads I carry. Young American boys look to me to direct them in a manner that will someday allow them to see their families again...and yet, I too, am just a boy....my age not but a few years more than that of the ones I lead. I am stressed, I am scared, and I am paranoid...because death is everywhere. It waits for me, it calls to me from around street corners and windows, and it is always there. There are the demons that follow me, and tempt me into thoughts and actions that are not my own...but that are necessary for survival. I've made compromises with my humanity. And I am not alone in this. Miles from me are my brethren in this world, who walk in the same streets... who feel the same t hings, whether they admit to it or not. And to think, I volunteered for this... And I am ignorant to the rest of the world...or so I thought. But even thousands of miles away, in Ramadi , Iraq , the cries and screams and complaints of the ungrateful reach me. In a year, I will be thrust back into society from a life and mentality that doesn't fit your average man. And then, I will be alone. And then, I will walk down the streets of America, and see the yellow ribbon stickers on the cars of the same people who compare our President to Hitler. I will watch the television and watch the Cindy Sheehans, and the Al Frankens, and the rest of the ignorant sheep of America spout off their mouths about a subject they know nothing about. It is their right, however, and it is a right that is defended by hundreds of thousands of boys and girls scattered across the world, far from home. I use the word boys and girls, because that's what they are. In the Army, the average age of the infantryman is nineteen years old. The average rank of soldiers killed in action is Private First Class.


blackwalnut 10 years, 2 months ago

This is how our Republican administration supports our troops.

A friend's daughter recently married her soldier sweetheart who has already been to Iraq for two tours. He expects to be called up again and will know for sure in December. As soon as he came home from the last tour, his health insurance was cancelled. Last month he got bronchitis and some complications and had to go to the emergency room; these young married teenagers now have a bill of over $4,000 to pay. Neither of them has access to health insurance, but of course both are working full-time. It may or not be relevant that this young man has had terrible nightmares and emotional problems stemming from his experiences in Iraq, and he is struggling with that too.

Support the troops should mean more than buying a $2 car magnet. Shame on Bush & Co.

navyjayhawk 10 years, 2 months ago

If you care to send a note of appreciation to a service member at WRAMC, try the link below for recommendations: http://www.wramc.amedd.army.mil/Lists/WRNews/DispForm.aspx?Id=25&

monkeyhawk 10 years, 2 months ago

People like Cindy Sheehan are ignorant. Not just to this war, but to the results of their idiotic ramblings, or at least I hope they are. They don't realize its effects on this war. In this war, there are no Geneva Conventions, no cease fires. Medics and Chaplains are not spared from the enemy's brutality because it's against the rules. I can only imagine the horrors a military Chaplain would experience at the hands of the enemy. The enemy slinks in the shadows and fights a coward's war against us. It is effective though, as many men and women have died since the start of this war. And the memory of their service to America is tainted by the inconsiderate remarks on our nation's news outlets. And every day, the enemy changes...only now, the enemy is becoming something new. The enemy is transitioning from the Muslim extremists to Americans. The enemy is becoming the very people whom we defend with our lives. And they do not realize it. But in denouncing our actions, denouncing our leaders, denouncing the war we live and fight, they are isolating the military from society...and they are becoming our enemy. Democrats and peace activists like to toss the word "quagmire" around and compare this war to Vietnam . In a way they are right, this war is becoming like Vietnam . Not the actual war, but in the isolation of country and military. America is not a nation at war; they are a nation with its military at war. Like it or not, we are here, some of us for our second, or third times; some even for their fourth and so on. Americans are so concerned now with politics, that it is interfering with our war. Terrorists cut the heads off of American citizens on the Internet...and there is no outrage, but an American soldier kills an Iraqi in the midst of battle, and there are investigations, and sometimes soldiers are even jailed...for doing their job. It is absolutely sickening to me to think our country has come to this. Why are we so obsessed with the bad news? Why will people stop at nothing to be against this war, no matter how much evidence of the good we've done is thrown in their face? When is the last time CNN or MSNBC or CBS reported the opening of schools and hospitals in Iraq? Or the leaders of terror cells being detained or killed? It's all happening, but people will not let up their hatred of Bush. They will ignore the good news, because it just might show people that Bush was right.


monkeyhawk 10 years, 2 months ago

America has lost its will to fight. It has lost its will to defend what is right and just in the world. The crazy thing of it all is that the American people have not even been asked to sacrifice a single thing. It's not like World War Two, where people rationed food, and turned in cars to be made into metal for tanks. The American people have not been asked to sacrifice anything. Unless you are in the military or the family member of a service member, its life as usual...the war doesn't affect you.

But it affects us. And when it is over, and the troops come ho me, and they try to piece together what's left of them after their service...where will the detractors be then? Where will the Cindy Sheehans be to comfort and talk to soldiers and help them sort out the last couple years of their lives, most of which have been spent dodging death and wading through the deaths of their friends? They will be wh ere they always are, somewhere far away, where the horrors of the world can't touch them. Somewhere where they can complain about things they will never experience in their lifetime; things that the young men and women of America have willingly taken upon their shoulders.

We are the hope of the Iraqi people. They want what everyone else wants in life: safety, security, somewhere to call home. They want a country that is safe to raise their children in. Not a place where their children will be abducted, raped, and murdered if they do not comply with the terrorists demands. They want to live on, rebuild and prosper. And America has given them the opportunity, but only if we stay true to the cause, and see it to its end. But the country must unite in this endeavor...we cannot place the burden on our military alone. We must all stand up and fight, whether in uniform or not. And supporting us is more than sticking yellow ribbon stickers on your cars. It's supporting our President, our troops and our cause.

Right now, the burden is all on the American soldiers. Right now, hope rides alone. But it can change, it must change. Because there is only failure and darkness ahead for us as a country, as a people, if it doesn't.

Let's stop all the political nonsense, let's stop all the bickering, let's stop all the bad news, and let's stand and fight!

Eddie's father, David Jeffers, writes: I'm not sure how many letters or articles you've ever read from the genre of "News from the Front," but this is one of the best I've ever read, including all of America 's wars. As I was reading this, I forgot that it was my son who had written it. My emotions range from great pride to great sorrow, knowing that my little boy (22 years old) has become this man. He is my hero. Thank all of you for your prayers for him; he needs them now more than ever. God bless.

monkeyhawk 10 years, 2 months ago

My entire post should have had quotes around it. None of these were my words, merely a repro of an e-mail I received earlier in the day. Mes faux pas, though I thought it was appropriate for the subject.

Kontum1972 10 years, 2 months ago

this is not a declared war....so the big guys can run this anyway they want to..declared war has different parameters....the P and VP and the former SecDef wrapped this baby up really good for the rest of us, and now they want to go to war with iran..who the hell are they gonna send?

They are beating the drum for iran...and they have been warned by the arabs that this action will unite the whole muslim world against us...thats why Saudi King came to crawford to meet with the pres. he gave the warning...but the neocons want the second coming....what is wrong with these people?

ndmoderate 10 years, 2 months ago

"Democrats and peace activists like to toss the word "quagmire" around and compare this war to Vietnam..."

I seem to remember a certain other person "toss" that word around...our current VP. Does that mean he hates America?

feeble 10 years, 2 months ago


Why not mention that David Jeffers blogs (before and after his son's death) for TheVanguard.Org. TheVanguard.Org describes itself as "America's premier conservative online activist community" and "TheVanguard.Org is an effort by the conservative netroots to take back their country, their party, and the internet as well."

I realize Eddie Jeffers is a now being treated as a martyr by the hawks in the far right corner of the Republican tent, and thus is a popular individual to bring to discussions about "the War", but the issue at hand isn't how much the late Eddie Jeffers disliked Cindy Sheehan and Al Franken exercising their 1st Amendment rights, it's about the utter disregard being shown to modern day vets by the policies of the current administration.

gogoplata 10 years, 2 months ago

Troop support. The best way to support them would be to bring them home. No more fighting wars that have nothing to do with ensuring American freedom. No more sticking our nose into the internal affairs of other nations. The American military has no business fighting wars of aggression. It is immoral and unjust. We are not the good guys when we travel across the world, start wars, and kill people who did not attack us.

Dorothy Hoyt-Reed 10 years, 2 months ago

The Iraqi people needed to fight for their own freedom; otherwise, it means nothing.

blackwalnut 10 years, 2 months ago

justfornow (Anonymous) says: blackwalnut, I spent 3.5 years in the military back in the late 80's and to this day I can go to any V.A. hospital and get treated.

The illness - involving respiratory difficulties - required an emergency room. The young man does not live near a V.A. hospital. He does not live in Kansas.

gogoplata 10 years, 2 months ago

We started our revolution and had help from the French.

We started the Iraq War. There is an important difference. You can't spread freedom at the barrel of a gun.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.