23 January 2007

Support our troops

In Portland (aka Little Beirut) on Sunday, my daughter Kira bought a thrift-store tee shirt with a map of Iraq next to a map of Michigan, with “Operation Iraqi Freedom” emblazoned across. She wore it to work, and got such strange looks that she ended up putting on a sweatshirt over it. People just didn’t know what to say. Did it mean she was a Bush supporter? Was it meant in irony?
Then at the neighborhood pub last night, a guy at the end of the bar asked her if that was a “support our troops” band on the shirt's arm.
It was, she said.
He thanked her.
He’d recently gotten out of the hospital, and was scheduled to return for his fourth tour of duty next month.
He’d been injured when the Humvee he’d been in hit an IED. He was the only survivor.
He told her that few of the troops still have confidence in either Bush or any rationale for being there.
Kira bought him a beer and asked what she could do.
Send socks and baby powder, he told her. The guys are always short on socks and baby powder.
This war sucks.

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