Tuesday, December 7, 2010

"This is no drill"

Pearl Harbor...the name itself evokes emotions even among us who weren't yet born that December 7th, 1941.  I went there many years ago and a friend from the Secret Service, Tom Collins (may he rest in peace), arranged for a tour.  It was sobering to look down into the water and see the Arizona laying just a few feet below the surface.  But it took until 9/11/01 for me to fully understand the feelings that my parents had when Pearl Harbor was mentioned.  Until the day she died my mother could remember exactly what she was doing that day and any mention of Pearl Harbor led to her talking about friends and acquaintances who were working for MK (Morrison-Knudson) on Wake Island when the war started and never left that island.

9/11 was my generation's Pearl Harbor moment.  Like my parents I can remember the small details of that day.  Unlike my parents, I look at a now feckless Federal Government response to terrorists who that day we finally realized had declared war on us.  Our military has done all it has been asked to do and more but the idea that we can wage war in a piecemeal manner against an enemy that purposely hides behind the skirts of its women and children offers no easy solution.  Today, however, it is proper that we put aside our current tribulations and consider the world that our parents and grandparents--and for some their great-grandparents--faced when they woke-up that morning, December 7th, 1941:  "...a date that will live in infamy."

Here are some photos from that day.

The USS Arizona today.  

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