With lots of press but little fanfare, the last remaining troops stationed in Iraq began packing up shop and heading home. After nearly nine years of conflict (the second longest in American history), countless billions of dollars, the lives of over 4000 of our troops and over 30,000 wounded, the U.S. mission in Iraq is now “officially” over. While this quiet ending was long in coming, it will undoubtedly leave behind an eerie feeling of dissatisfied relief amongst the Veterans who have fought there throughout the past decade.

From Saddam Hussein and his illusive weapons of mass destruction, to the following years of roadside bomb’s, IED’s, kidnappings, insurgency, Fallujah, and beyond… America’s Veterans have paid a heavy toll for what was once dubbed as “Operation Iraqi Freedom.”  However future generations may recall it, may they never forget the sacrifice of those that fought there, and of our fallen heroes that never made it home.

So on this day, when many of you are probably feeling a little surreal about the occasion. I wanted to take a moment to thank my fellow Iraq Veterans for all of their dedicated service over the years. Although the “official” war may have ended in Iraq, its memories will fade hard and linger on in its wake for many years to come. When you think back though, take pride in knowing that against all odds you kept the faith and performed brilliantly.

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Published on Dec. 28, 2011

Estimated reading time is 1.2 min.

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  1. Buff52 January 14, 2012 at 11:42 am

    I wonder if the highly educated ivy league people who run the federal government in Washington D.C. remember their professors’ lectures on American history. Do they not remember how after World War One the U.S. Senate did not ratify the League of Nations? So that because we were not involved, Hitler, Mussolini, and Tojo rose up to try take over the world? But we learned our lesson. After World War Two the U.S. Army that defeated Hitler stayed in Germany from 1945 until now. The U.S. Navy defeated Tojo and we stayed in Japan from 1945 until now. The U.S. Army after stopping the Korean Kim Il Sung invasion, stayed in Korea from 1950 until now. Where ever, we stayed the U.S. soldiers and sailors have had a positive example on the societies in which they lived. Certainly the highly educated ivy league people who run the federal government in Washington D.C. know this. So why leave Iraq?

  2. Linda Sheffield/MacKenzie January 9, 2012 at 1:11 pm

    Politics aside for a moment, should we not just focus on being thankful that most of our fellow servicemembers are coming home?

    Also, would not our fellow fallen servicemembers who gave their precious lives best be served in honor of their memory by those of us who survived the conflict to appreciate and celebrate the fact that many lives will be preserved because we got to come home to safer soils?

    I for one have the opinion that we owe those fallen soldiers/friends whom we had to leave behind… our thanks and in many cases,our own lives.

    They would be best honored, in my opinion by putting all other concerns to the side and at least for now, focusing on obtaining and improving programs that help those who are coming home and getting out.

    They are making a transition into a civilian existence that has such current hardships of recession, unemployment increase and a nationwide lack of health care coverage due to the cycle of those types of hardships.

    I wish we could honor those who fell yesterday by arriving to a new, more secure tomorrow and let that be our current focus…

    But that’s just my opinion. :)

    Linda Sheffield/MacKenzie/Leister,
    USN HN Vet

  3. Jenny Taylor December 31, 2011 at 11:54 pm

    I really have mixed feelings about this are ending. Of course I would prefer we not go to war, but I feel that our mission there is not complete. Yes the people of Iraq are much better off, but I do feel that the withdrawal of troops is premature. I just feel there are a lot of unfinished business left there, and it seems like this withdrawal is more political than strategic. I would hate for all those who paid the ultimate cost for this war to have done so in vein because some politician is trying to win re-election. Our brave men and women in uniform deserve to come home victorious and with honor, and I do not think leaving at this moment will accomplish this. As a civilian I am grateful for your service and the rest of our troops. God bless.

  4. Jack December 29, 2011 at 2:56 pm

    I dont see how any one says that its over. Are we forgetting about the over 28 permanent military bases we will still occupy, ironically 3/4 of which are along the new oil pipeline established by Haliburton…
    I just laugh when Fox news or CNN or who ever , gets up there on their little screen and just says the words ‘its finally over’ and thats all the American people need now a days, to go tell their friends ‘hey did you hear we’re done with the war in iraq, ya i heard it on the news, we’re leaving the country’ and the perpetuation of this contrived obsolescence when no one wants to actually look into the facts. I agree with some parts of your post here, but we’re not going anywhere, that is a strategic location for the US to be, and we will be there until the end of time.

  5. Wilfredo Godreau December 28, 2011 at 6:04 pm

    America allways will be proud of your dedication to duty for our Country keping in mind oour battle bodies that never have the oportunity to get back home but is just a remember to the rest of the Nation that Freedom is not Free .GOD bless our troops.

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