Sunday, May 26, 2002

Something to look forward to

The National Memorial Day Concert at the Capitol tonight honored the survivors of the Bataan Death March, while Army Chief of Staff Gen. Eric K. Shinseki looked on. Several years ago, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs was Gen. John Shalikashvili, who was born in Warsaw in 1936. In 1984, Shali was deputy commander of the 1st Armored Division in Germany, whose job was to defend against the East German, Russian and Polish troops who might try to cross the Fulda Gap. The Secretary of State, former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Colin Powell, is the descendant of West Indian blacks, who worked the sugar plantations of the Caribbean. Five American Indians have been awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor, and one of the Marines who raised the flag on Mt. Surabachi was Ira Hayes, a Pima Indian.

50 years from now, I hope the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff has a name like "Abdullah."


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