I got back from my trip to Batavia, NY, last night with my heart full of pride! I had gone up to the Bi-yearly reunion of my unit in ‘Nam, the 57th Assault Helicopter Company. The 57th was made up of the Gladiators, the Cougars, our Maintenance Unit and our Guard Unit. The Gladiators, of which I am one, were the “Slicks”, the ships that went into landing zones for several reasons like dropping off troops, picking them up and flying in needed supplies like food and ammunition. We also pulled Medivac missions. The Cougars were our Gunships and they kept us alive by giving us cover as we went in. Every man in my unit was someone everyone could depend on to stand and fight with them, regardless of the amount of danger headed towards us! And we faced a great deal of danger every single day as the North Vietnamese wanted us out of Kontum because we were the closest unit to the Tri-border area of Vietnam and we were able to get troops in needed areas quicker than the units in Pleiku. We flew several missions every day and, when we returned home to Kontum, we spent many nights fighting off enemy attacks. We were hit so often that it became a kind of “everyday life” for us. And, during the 1968 Tet Offensive, we were hit very hard, but we fought back even harder and won the battle!
Why did we do what we did? Was it because of the War? No; it was because we were in the War and we knew that the only way we could survive was to stand with each other and protect ourselves! Sure, it was possible for someone to run and hide while everyone else fought, but we had too much honor to do that! We learned the true value of honor, the true “heart” of war; a man has to decide to either stand up and do what is right or run and hide, worrying only about his own safety, and we had far too much concern for each other to do something like that! War teaches true values to the human heart because of the need to survive; not one’s personal survival, but the survival of all, fighting as a team! How can you spend every day with the closest friends in your life and not want to protect them, just as much as they want to protect you! How can you want to work only for your own interests if you know that it will cause harm to your friends! Men and women of honor, Soldiers, Marines, Sailors and Airmen learn to sacrifice their own interests to keep their brothers, and sisters alive! Many earn medals like Bronze and Silver Stars and some gain the Medal of Honor, but a great many sacrifice a great deal every day without any recognition, and it doesn’t matter because it was simply what they needed to do! And that’s the truth of honor!
And a lack of that honor is what is destroying our country! We have seen the lack of concern for anyone but one’s self every day in the News with all of the outrageous murders and other crimes that seem to be a way of life to many today! And, even worse, we have seen the lack of concern by our Politicians for anyone but themselves in the way they create and pass Bills like the Health Care Bill without even reading it, because they don’t have the honor to do what is right! And, even worse, they pass Legislation to remove themselves from the regulations of the Bill by passing a law that removes them from having to be a part of it! They don’t live with the people who voted them in, they live in the luxurious kingdom of Washington, DC, to allow them to be removed from any dangers caused by the legislation they pass that destroys the very lives of the voters in their districts! They are the new “Lords and Ladies” of America, they are too “important” to actually do anything for us; the minions in their Districts! And the worst part is that 98% of them have never actually been in face to face combat while fighting for their country, so they have no idea of the truths of our Forefathers that sacrificed a great deal to build this free nation! And several who claim to be “honorable Combat Vets” are no more than actors, as the only thing they did was protect themselves, thinking only of their own futures! Many are Lawyers who wanted to grow more power and being a part of our government was the best way they could do it! So, now they create complicated, lawyer-worded laws that are written to allow them to be manipulated to fit their own needs when they need to! There is no real honor in DC, and that is the true problem in our country!
I spent 2 1/2 years in the snakepit of DC and I know how it truly works, and we need to rid ourselves of the snakes and start putting more and more veterans in our government; men and women who understand the true costs of Freedom! We need vets because we need those who want to protect our great nation, not destroy it for their own profit as the lawyers do, so that we can bring back the America that the whole world once looked up to and respected! How long do we continue voting for people because we “recognize their names” or don’t want to actually look for someone with real honor! It is our responsibility to find the right candidates and elect them, then monitor their actions in DC to ensure that they are representing us, not their own interests! And the best possible group of future leaders available to us are the men and women who have served our country! And those who have served in Iran and Afghanistan are young enough to capture the interests of the younger Americans and to become their future leaders, so we need to begin finding the young men and women veterans that will do the right things for our country! We have the time to help them gain the backing they need to win elections next year and to get the support that one will need to run for President in 2016! Keep your eyes open in your local areas for the right person, then stand up and support him/her in their campaigns! They are the future of our nation and they are the future of our children and grandchildren! Let’s get together and find the future “Forefathers” that can bring back the true Constitution and to rebuild our great Republic! It’s our responsibility to bring true Honor back to our government! It’s our responsibility to rebuild America!
WAKE UP AMERICANS, OR LOSE AMERICA!
Michael J. Kilgus