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My Visit To Arlington
Author: BobR    Date: 05/30/2013 14:06:40

This past Memorial Day, Raine and I set out to visit Arlington National Cemetery. We'd visited before, touring the Lee house, paying tribute to the Kennedys and the eternal flame, and watching the changing of the guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. That visit was sobering and serene, as we tried to find our way among the trees turning up their autumn colors.

This time.... this time was different.

The very nature of Memorial Day is to get Americans to pause and think and remember those who fell in the field of battle. I am fortunate enough to not have had any relative or other loved one killed in the line of duty.

However, visiting ANC on Memorial Day and seeing all the flags is a reminder that many have died for us all. Without us knowing them, without them knowing us - they died for us. Remember that the entire Christian religion is based on this concept. To think that a complete stranger gave their life for my freedom and to preserve my way of life is humbling and horrifying and haunting.

The sheer magnitude is startling. You can walk for hours and still see row after row of markers. You can stand in one place and slowly turn and see nothing but markers trailing off into the distance as far as you can see. You can't help but wonder about all those families that lost a son, a brother, a father, a daughter, a mother, a wife. You can't help but wonder about all the lost potential.. which of these might have gone on to be a doctor?... a scientist?... a writer of inspiring novels or music?... The potential loss to the betterment of humanity is depressing.

The orderliness and the matching stones all in neat rows can't help but remind you of the soldiers who lie beneath. The similarity to soldiers in matching uniforms marching in formation off to war cannot be denied.

http://fourfreedomsblog.com/uploads/Arlington_Markers.jpg


Finally - we came to the hardest part of our visit: Area 60. This is where those who fell (and continue to fall) in Afghanistan and Iraq are interred. This is where the bulk of grieving visitors were, leaving flowers and photos and bottles and cans of their fallen comrades' favorite beer. We saw so many tears...

http://FourFreedomsBlog.com/uploads/Arlington_Marine.jpg


We saw graves that had not yet received their permanent stone markers... We saw rectangles of fresh dirt, ready to welcome the shell of another soldier yet to be picked by the Grim Reaper. We saw fields of grass lying in wait of another conflict in a foreign land.

It is true that not every person buried in ANC fell in the field of battle. Some are veterans that finally succumbed to the vagaries of civilian life (or the horrors trapped within their own tortured psyches). However, not every American that fell in the field of battle is buried in ANC either - I am certain that there are more lost in battle than there are graves at ANC, which just reinforces the sense of waste.

It was President Dwight D. Eisenhower who said "Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed". We know that sometimes war is necessary. Sometimes there is a criminal on a global scale that pushes the issue, whether that be Hitler or any other homicidal maniac. It is not unlike the need for police on a local level. When one thinks of the rationale and sometimes outright false flags used to coerce Americans to support a war of choosing, then frustration and anger and the desire to see retribution for these needlessly stolen lives is natural and even required, if our Democracy is to continue.

On a civilian level, it is said that the detectives who investigate and prosecute murders are speaking for the dead, as they can no longer speak for themselves. So too must we as a nation speak for the soldiers who died in a war they fought that was based on lies. We as a nation must ensure that it never happens again.

83 comments (Latest Comment: 05/30/2013 20:28:33 by Mondobubba)
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Comment by Scoopster on 05/30/2013 12:58:08
Mornin' all..

Comment by wickedpam on 05/30/2013 13:02:20
Morning

Comment by Mondobubba on 05/30/2013 13:02:27
Morning.

Comment by Scoopster on 05/30/2013 13:29:07
Comment by Mondobubba on 05/30/2013 13:34:44
Quote by Scoopster:
I see Fox News is performing stretching exercises..

That one made my brain hurt..



Erick Erickson is clearly not familiar with bees, ants, or wasps now is he? He probably doesn't know that female black widow spiders are the dominate sex in that particular species either. Don't get me started on praying mantises.

Comment by Raine on 05/30/2013 13:42:07
Good Morning!

Comment by clintster on 05/30/2013 13:54:20
Gmmnnn



Comment by Raine on 05/30/2013 13:59:50
Quote by clintster:
Gmmnnn

Hey Clint! How did the interview go?


Comment by BobR on 05/30/2013 14:07:50
blog is posted


Comment by Raine on 05/30/2013 14:11:31
I'm crying again. I;m glad you wrote this Bob.

Comment by Mondobubba on 05/30/2013 14:12:58
That was fantastic, Bobber.

Comment by Mondobubba on 05/30/2013 14:13:21
Quote by Raine:
Quote by clintster:
Gmmnnn

Hey Clint! How did the interview go?



Yeah, do tell.

Comment by clintster on 05/30/2013 14:13:39
Quote by Raine:
Quote by clintster:
Gmmnnn

Hey Clint! How did the interview go?


It went well. This school was actually one where I had done an observation in preparation for my certification for teaching (God that's a lot of -tion words!). Apparently one of the teachers I observed has left, and I reminded the other teacher (who was one of the interviewers) that I had met her a couple of years ago.

They are apparently going to announce the next step around the 10th; maybe hiring one of the interviewees, maybe going for more in-depth interviews, maybe starting a new round of prelim interviews. I'm really hoping for the first option.

In the meantime, I am trying to find something to do. My unemployment ran out 3 weeks ago. I'm looking for some kind of fast-paying job so that I can at least keep my bills up to date. My parents are giving me a place to stay, but can't really help me with bills. I'm headed to Lenoir to see my uncle who had aneurism surgery yesterday, and then hitting nearby towns to find work.

Comment by wickedpam on 05/30/2013 14:23:08
Arlington is an overwhelming place not only because of the magnitude of what it is but because for me bits of my family there - Aunt Bev worked at the gift shop in the Custis-Lee mansion as a teen and my grandparents are buried there (they have a view of the Pentagon).

Its hard to walk/drive in there an not be overcome by emotion on so many levels.

Comment by wickedpam on 05/30/2013 14:24:30
Quote by clintster:
Quote by Raine:
Quote by clintster:
Gmmnnn

Hey Clint! How did the interview go?


It went well. This school was actually one where I had done an observation in preparation for my certification for teaching (God that's a lot of -tion words!). Apparently one of the teachers I observed has left, and I reminded the other teacher (who was one of the interviewers) that I had met her a couple of years ago.

They are apparently going to announce the next step around the 10th; maybe hiring one of the interviewees, maybe going for more in-depth interviews, maybe starting a new round of prelim interviews. I'm really hoping for the first option.

In the meantime, I am trying to find something to do. My unemployment ran out 3 weeks ago. I'm looking for some kind of fast-paying job so that I can at least keep my bills up to date. My parents are giving me a place to stay, but can't really help me with bills. I'm headed to Lenoir to see my uncle who had aneurism surgery yesterday, and then hitting nearby towns to find work.


Good Luck Clint


Comment by Raine on 05/30/2013 14:29:27
Quote by wickedpam:
Arlington is an overwhelming place not only because of the magnitude of what it is but because for me bits of my family there - Aunt Bev worked at the gift shop in the Custis-Lee mansion as a teen and my grandparents are buried there (they have a view of the Pentagon).

Its hard to walk/drive in there an not be overcome by emotion on so many levels.
I find it amazing, beautiful sad and glorious all at once. Very emotional.

Going to area 60 tho -- was overwhelming.

As we were walking out, a couple was walking in -- the fellow really looked familiar; As he passed I heard him talking to his companion -- and realized it was Dana Millbank. Plaid Shirt and shorts.


Comment by TriSec on 05/30/2013 14:32:18
It's a small world, after all....It's a small world, after all...IT'S A SMALL WORLD AFT- BLAM! BLAM! BLAM! BLAM!

Ha!


Comment by wickedpam on 05/30/2013 14:34:42
Quote by Raine:
Quote by wickedpam:
Arlington is an overwhelming place not only because of the magnitude of what it is but because for me bits of my family there - Aunt Bev worked at the gift shop in the Custis-Lee mansion as a teen and my grandparents are buried there (they have a view of the Pentagon).

Its hard to walk/drive in there an not be overcome by emotion on so many levels.
I find it amazing, beautiful sad and glorious all at once. Very emotional.

Going to area 60 tho -- was overwhelming.

As we were walking out, a couple was walking in -- the fellow really looked familiar; As he passed I heard him talking to his companion -- and realized it was Dana Millbank. Plaid Shirt and shorts.



oh wow

I've not been in a number of years now (I'm a bad granddaughter), just don't have the strength

Comment by Raine on 05/30/2013 14:35:36
I'm so glad this is not going to happen.

Now can we arrest this bonehead on sedition charges?

Comment by Raine on 05/30/2013 14:36:51
Quote by wickedpam:
Quote by Raine:
Quote by wickedpam:
Arlington is an overwhelming place not only because of the magnitude of what it is but because for me bits of my family there - Aunt Bev worked at the gift shop in the Custis-Lee mansion as a teen and my grandparents are buried there (they have a view of the Pentagon).

Its hard to walk/drive in there an not be overcome by emotion on so many levels.
I find it amazing, beautiful sad and glorious all at once. Very emotional.

Going to area 60 tho -- was overwhelming.

As we were walking out, a couple was walking in -- the fellow really looked familiar; As he passed I heard him talking to his companion -- and realized it was Dana Millbank. Plaid Shirt and shorts.



oh wow

I've not been in a number of years now (I'm a bad granddaughter), just don't have the strength
it's understandable. I think it is easier for me to go -- to the best of my knowledge, I've no loved ones buried there.


Comment by wickedpam on 05/30/2013 14:37:42
Quote by Raine:
Quote by wickedpam:
Quote by Raine:
Quote by wickedpam:
Arlington is an overwhelming place not only because of the magnitude of what it is but because for me bits of my family there - Aunt Bev worked at the gift shop in the Custis-Lee mansion as a teen and my grandparents are buried there (they have a view of the Pentagon).

Its hard to walk/drive in there an not be overcome by emotion on so many levels.
I find it amazing, beautiful sad and glorious all at once. Very emotional.

Going to area 60 tho -- was overwhelming.

As we were walking out, a couple was walking in -- the fellow really looked familiar; As he passed I heard him talking to his companion -- and realized it was Dana Millbank. Plaid Shirt and shorts.



oh wow

I've not been in a number of years now (I'm a bad granddaughter), just don't have the strength
it's understandable. I think it is easier for me to go -- to the best of my knowledge, I've no loved ones buried there.





Comment by TriSec on 05/30/2013 14:38:08
My great-uncle Santiago is at Arlington.

WWI and WWII service in the Philippines.

I have one on you - I've been to an overseas WWII cemetery, outside Manila. Those are all soldiers killed in war, over 17,000 of them.

I remember our visit well; we were touring with a Japanese gentleman by the name of Mr. Tanaka. I could indeed read his mind as we stood reading the memorial plaque in the rotunda...." I wonder if our grandfathers fought each other?"

It is no less sobering no matter where the deceased lie.


Comment by wickedpam on 05/30/2013 14:41:42
Quote by Raine:
I'm so glad this is not going to happen.

Now can we arrest this bonehead on sedition charges?



Oh lord, what is wrong with people. Glad they called off the 4th of July DC march - I was wondering how the combo of a packed Mall for the fireworks and an armed march on the White House) was going to co-exsist

Comment by Raine on 05/30/2013 14:44:11
Rachel had an amazing segment last night about James Comey -- the fellow Obama was to lead the FBI. (video links in there)

Watching that video again after so many years was chilling.

Comment by Raine on 05/30/2013 14:45:51
Quote by TriSec:
My great-uncle Santiago is at Arlington.

WWI and WWII service in the Philippines.

I have one on you - I've been to an overseas WWII cemetery, outside Manila. Those are all soldiers killed in war, over 17,000 of them.

I remember our visit well; we were touring with a Japanese gentleman by the name of Mr. Tanaka. I could indeed read his mind as we stood reading the memorial plaque in the rotunda...." I wonder if our grandfathers fought each other?"

It is no less sobering no matter where the deceased lie.
We were wondering about you and Mala on Monday.

Tri if you want we can visit your uncle the next time we go -- same for you Mala.


Comment by wickedpam on 05/30/2013 14:49:50
Quote by Raine:
Quote by TriSec:
My great-uncle Santiago is at Arlington.

WWI and WWII service in the Philippines.

I have one on you - I've been to an overseas WWII cemetery, outside Manila. Those are all soldiers killed in war, over 17,000 of them.

I remember our visit well; we were touring with a Japanese gentleman by the name of Mr. Tanaka. I could indeed read his mind as we stood reading the memorial plaque in the rotunda...." I wonder if our grandfathers fought each other?"

It is no less sobering no matter where the deceased lie.
We were wondering about you and Mala on Monday.

Tri if you want we can visit your uncle the next time we go -- same for you Mala.



I'll have to find the plot numbers, for some reason I always remember being near the big crypt

Comment by Will in Chicago on 05/30/2013 14:51:23
Good morning, bloggers! Bobber, thanks for a great blog. I have never been to Arlington but I can imagine how moving this visit was for you based on your words.

In the good news, I am finding lots of teaching jobs to apply to -- and I am already busy job hunting today. However, my brother worries that his wife may lose her job and told me I need to find anything. (I do have some babysitting for a friend who will have custody of his twins every other week and I am working on stuff I can do from home.) So, checking teaching jobs and other stuff, but I will have to do the pro forma applications to places which have not gotten back to me in the past (Costco, Target) and hope for something. (Obviously, I would drop anything for teaching. Unfortunately, I think all managers realize this.)

Comment by Will in Chicago on 05/30/2013 14:51:43
Clint, good luck on a second interview. I hope that you get the job.

Comment by wickedpam on 05/30/2013 14:55:32
In need of cute -

http://www.seejenwrite.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/03/pug-puppies-12.jpeg


http://wrecking.org/cbd/wp-content/uploads/2009/04/bunnies_driving.jpg


http://images5.fanpop.com/image/photos/27000000/Froggie-kittens-27087393-449-393.jpg


Comment by BobR on 05/30/2013 14:57:46
The kittie-frog looks photoshopped to me (especially when you look at the shadow)

Comment by Scoopster on 05/30/2013 14:59:10
Quote by BobR:
The kittie-frog looks photoshopped to me (especially when you look at the shadow)

Heh all I see is the text link for that one..

Comment by wickedpam on 05/30/2013 15:03:12
Quote by Scoopster:
Quote by BobR:
The kittie-frog looks photoshopped to me (especially when you look at the shadow)

Heh all I see is the text link for that one..



I've seen kittie-frog before, not sure about the photoshop

Comment by Mondobubba on 05/30/2013 15:05:07
Quote by wickedpam:
In need of cute -

http://www.seejenwrite.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/03/pug-puppies-12.jpeg


http://wrecking.org/cbd/wp-content/uploads/2009/04/bunnies_driving.jpg


http://images5.fanpop.com/image/photos/27000000/Froggie-kittens-27087393-449-393.jpg



Yeah, kitty frog is 'Shopped.

Comment by Raine on 05/30/2013 15:07:35
Comment by Raine on 05/30/2013 15:15:44
Quote by Raine:
This man is a danger to himself and our nation. What an idiot.

Retire, McCain, retire. Please.
HE did this shit in Libya as well. *SMH*


Comment by wickedpam on 05/30/2013 15:19:22
no killing my cuteness high

Comment by Mondobubba on 05/30/2013 15:31:44
The pug puppy reminds of a friend of mine's dog, who is a rescue. Said pug is cross eyed dope of dog, who's tongue never stays in his mouth. As my friend says, he's a lovable lunkhead.

Comment by Mondobubba on 05/30/2013 15:33:34
Quote by wickedpam:
no killing my cuteness high



Sorry didn't mean to be a buzz kill.

Here is a smiling quokka for you.


http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-W07gUB6KzSA/UUKkgTU6tjI/AAAAAAAACcQ/i30aqiN0Ea4/s640/quokka+2.jpg


Comment by Raine on 05/30/2013 15:39:06
Quote by Raine:
Quote by Raine:
This man is a danger to himself and our nation. What an idiot.

Retire, McCain, retire. Please.
HE did this shit in Libya as well. *SMH*
Yup, I wrote about it back in February.


Comment by Mondobubba on 05/30/2013 15:40:38
Here is a real brain trust.

Dana Rohrabacher, Michelle Bachmann and Steve King are in Russian on fact finding mission about the Boston Bomber suspect.

Comment by wickedpam on 05/30/2013 15:43:43
Quote by Mondobubba:
Quote by wickedpam:
no killing my cuteness high



Sorry didn't mean to be a buzz kill.

Here is a smiling quokka for you.


http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-W07gUB6KzSA/UUKkgTU6tjI/AAAAAAAACcQ/i30aqiN0Ea4/s640/quokka+2.jpg



aawww so cute!


Comment by TriSec on 05/30/2013 15:47:13
Quote by Raine:
I'm so glad this is not going to happen.

Now can we arrest this bonehead on sedition charges?



Mondo, if now you shall burn this town, I shall sign up to help with this one.



Comment by Mondobubba on 05/30/2013 15:51:26
Quote by TriSec:
Quote by Raine:
I'm so glad this is not going to happen.

Now can we arrest this bonehead on sedition charges?



Mondo, if now you shall burn this town, I shall sign up to help with this one.




Secsh, they never learn...

Comment by Raine on 05/30/2013 15:51:52
Quote by Mondobubba:
Here is a real brain trust.

Dana Rohrabacher, Michelle Bachmann and Steve King are in Russian on fact finding mission about the Boston Bomber suspect.
so she was in Russia when her resignation video was posted?

Oh, that's rich. JUST spectacular.

As an aside, is it me or does it seem as tho the nanny state exists with the GOP? Let the fluckin FBI do it's job and stop wasting taxpayer money babysitting an agency that is being hindered at doing their job.

They are congress people -- they don't even trust the FBI these days. THEY AREN'T THE FBI! What is with all these fact finding missions? they aren't for diplomatic purposes, that is for damned sure. (see links below regarding John McCain)


Comment by wickedpam on 05/30/2013 15:54:14
Quote by Raine:
Quote by Mondobubba:
Here is a real brain trust.

Dana Rohrabacher, Michelle Bachmann and Steve King are in Russian on fact finding mission about the Boston Bomber suspect.
so she was in Russia when her resignation video was posted?

Oh, that's rich. JUST spectacular.

As an aside, is it me or does it seem as tho the nanny state exists with the GOP? Let the fluckin FBI do it's job and stop wasting taxpayer money babysitting an agency that is being hindered at doing their job.

They are congress people -- they don't even trust the FBI these days. THEY AREN'T THE FBI! What is with all these fact finding missions? they aren't for diplomatic purposes, that is for damned sure. (see links below regarding John McCain)


"Fact finding trip" to me has always been code for free vacation


Comment by Mondobubba on 05/30/2013 15:58:18
Quote by Raine:
Quote by Mondobubba:
Here is a real brain trust.

Dana Rohrabacher, Michelle Bachmann and Steve King are in Russian on fact finding mission about the Boston Bomber suspect.
so she was in Russia when her resignation video was posted?

Oh, that's rich. JUST spectacular.

As an aside, is it me or does it seem as tho the nanny state exists with the GOP? Let the fluckin FBI do it's job and stop wasting taxpayer money babysitting an agency that is being hindered at doing their job.

They are congress people -- they don't even trust the FBI these days. THEY AREN'T THE FBI! What is with all these fact finding missions? they aren't for diplomatic purposes, that is for damned sure. (see links below regarding John McCain)



My feeling is Roebacher, Bachmann & King are there to see if there is any non-existent dirt to prove that the POTUS didn't do enough due diligence.

Comment by Raine on 05/30/2013 16:01:03
Quote by wickedpam:
Quote by Raine:
Quote by Mondobubba:
Here is a real brain trust.

Dana Rohrabacher, Michelle Bachmann and Steve King are in Russian on fact finding mission about the Boston Bomber suspect.
so she was in Russia when her resignation video was posted?

Oh, that's rich. JUST spectacular.

As an aside, is it me or does it seem as tho the nanny state exists with the GOP? Let the fluckin FBI do it's job and stop wasting taxpayer money babysitting an agency that is being hindered at doing their job.

They are congress people -- they don't even trust the FBI these days. THEY AREN'T THE FBI! What is with all these fact finding missions? they aren't for diplomatic purposes, that is for damned sure. (see links below regarding John McCain)


"Fact finding trip" to me has always been code for free vacation
Generally, same here.

What I find offensive about this trip is that these representatives deem themselves superior to the FBI and local law enforcement. To the best of my knowledge, this is still an ongoing investigation. They are tampering with the investigation. They are part of the legislative branch -- not the judicial branch.


Comment by wickedpam on 05/30/2013 16:02:46
Quote by Raine:
Quote by wickedpam:
Quote by Raine:
Quote by Mondobubba:
Here is a real brain trust.

Dana Rohrabacher, Michelle Bachmann and Steve King are in Russian on fact finding mission about the Boston Bomber suspect.
so she was in Russia when her resignation video was posted?

Oh, that's rich. JUST spectacular.

As an aside, is it me or does it seem as tho the nanny state exists with the GOP? Let the fluckin FBI do it's job and stop wasting taxpayer money babysitting an agency that is being hindered at doing their job.

They are congress people -- they don't even trust the FBI these days. THEY AREN'T THE FBI! What is with all these fact finding missions? they aren't for diplomatic purposes, that is for damned sure. (see links below regarding John McCain)


"Fact finding trip" to me has always been code for free vacation
Generally, same here.

What I find offensive about this trip is that these representatives deem themselves superior to the FBI and local law enforcement. To the best of my knowledge, this is still an ongoing investigation. They are tampering with the investigation. They are part of the legislative branch -- not the judicial branch.



totally agree

Comment by Mondobubba on 05/30/2013 16:04:37
Quote by Raine:
Quote by wickedpam:
Quote by Raine:
Quote by Mondobubba:
Here is a real brain trust.

Dana Rohrabacher, Michelle Bachmann and Steve King are in Russian on fact finding mission about the Boston Bomber suspect.
so she was in Russia when her resignation video was posted?

Oh, that's rich. JUST spectacular.

As an aside, is it me or does it seem as tho the nanny state exists with the GOP? Let the fluckin FBI do it's job and stop wasting taxpayer money babysitting an agency that is being hindered at doing their job.

They are congress people -- they don't even trust the FBI these days. THEY AREN'T THE FBI! What is with all these fact finding missions? they aren't for diplomatic purposes, that is for damned sure. (see links below regarding John McCain)


"Fact finding trip" to me has always been code for free vacation
Generally, same here.

What I find offensive about this trip is that these representatives deem themselves superior to the FBI and local law enforcement. To the best of my knowledge, this is still an ongoing investigation. They are tampering with the investigation. They are part of the legislative branch -- not the judicial branch.


Slight point of order, FBI isn't part of the judicial branch, it is in the executive.

I'm in the free vacation camp as well. My other thought is if you are going to send congress critters on fact finding trips, please send ones for whom facts actually matter! That certainly be the Tool Trio.

Comment by Raine on 05/30/2013 16:08:26
Quote by Mondobubba:
My feeling is Roebacher, Bachmann & King are there to see if there is any non-existent dirt to prove that the POTUS didn't do enough due diligence.

On the Taxpayers dime, no?

This is what irritates me to no end. It's political -- it not in the interest of diplomacy or education. It's political. I'd be willing to go so far to say this should be looked at as an abuse of taxpayer money. Congressional ethics rules say that representatives can't bill for political travel.

This is political -- I guess the loophole is that it's not directly party related. This is shitty garbage.