I posted this because I wanted to make a point. When wars start men and women die. They don't set policy, they carry it out. I never heard or thought about high-minded policy decisions. It was about survival. Soldiers fight for each other. They don't fight for high-minded ideals. That may draw them in, but it doesn't give them the will to fight. I think in the abstract soldiers know why they're there, but really it's pretty basic. Get out alive. Why do soldiers do it? I think there is inculcated in soldiers a sense of duty. Whether it's to your country or to some revolutionary cause. Although those revolutionary causes are at their root countries, right? Nationalism and all that.
It's easy to hate these German soldiers as instruments of Hitler. However, I don't think that was at their core. I think they felt they were fighting for their country and its survival. Most soldiers are idealistic. I know I was. I felt it was my duty to fight. I went willingly and I came back feeling I'd done my part. When I got back, I found out a lot of Americans didn't see it my way. That confused me and I just didn't get it. Didn't these people know what we had done for them? We went and did what they didn't want to do and they hated us for it?
All my life I was raised to accept responsibility. By that I mean, when something needs to be done don't look to someone else, do it. My religion told me this, my parents told me this and I was raised to accept that someone has to do it, so move on, man. It's your duty as an American. You live in the greatest country in the world so you owe it something. When it calls go and do your part.
I hate when the intellectual elites put it on service people that you're aren't the best and brightest. After all, who would get their ass shot off for their country? Well, I guess I would. I consider myself to be reasonably intelligent. I also consider myself to owe my country a debt. It allowed me to thrive. My father had a job good enough so that his family survived. We didn't have a lot of stuff, but we were OK. The G.I. bill helped him buy a house and we lived and I had a good childhood. My dad tought me that if you want something work for it. Don't depend on other people to give it to you. Work and you'll survive. I wish I had a lot of money, but I don't envy those who do. I have something that is absolutely precious to me. I do something important. I teach life lessons to kids. The very lessons my dad taught to me. Work and you'll succeed. There is no alternative.
I have an education. I use it to pass on life lessons to the next generation. My dad was proud of me and that's all that matters.