LETTER: Deepest respect

Daniel Greer/Leavenworth

To the editor:

To our nation’s military members, military family members and all who have sacrificed on behalf of our nation’s safety: thank you.

In the past few days, we have all watched in dismay as Afghanistan fell back under the control of the Taliban. As we speak, many Americans, Afghani friends of America and others are in harm’s way. We join you in deep concern and prayers for their safety.

News stories abound about how “evil triumphed” at the termination of the protracted war in Afghanistan. They tell us we are in a worse place than we were before the war. Common misunderstanding declares that the operation failed to establish a free society in Afghanistan. Some have questioned if the costly investment of American lives was worth it.

I disagree with these assessments.

I am 38 years old. For the past 20 years of my life, my family has enjoyed a free, safe and in many respects, idyllic life here in America. Your sacrifice gave my family 20 years of normal life with relatively few fears. We worried about you, but we didn’t have to worry about ourselves. During those years, your lives were continually disrupted and deeply scarred, but ours continued peacefully. This would not have been possible without you keeping our enemies on the run. War will never solve evil, but it certainly kept a great evil away from us. I’m confident, with God’s blessing, that you will continue to find ways to hold up your protective shield, regardless of what happens in Central Asia.

I disagree that the Taliban has won this war. Dark and hard days are indeed ahead, but history is long and the story is not over. The world may not see it, but you have planted the seeds of freedom. If terrorism is hard to root out, freedom is even harder to eradicate. The Taliban lost the chance of 20 years of control and oppression. Hundreds of thousands of Afghani boys, and more importantly girls, had the chance to learn and study in relative peace. The roots of freedom have taken hold in the cracks and crevices of this society and will ultimately prevail with a permanency that wars can never accomplish. Those who have tasted freedom never will be satisfied with oppression.

Your sacrifice gave our country 20 years of peace on our shores. This is a gift that my family will always cherish because we see evidence of what it cost you. I’m confident your sacrifice will also make a lasting difference in the centuries ahead for the Afghani people. Children living in 100 years will understand how your sacrifices bought ultimate victory in this remote corner of the world.

On behalf of the team at Marlow White and our families, please accept our deepest respect and gratitude.

Daniel Greer is the president of Marlow White.

– Daniel Greer/Leavenworth