Memorial Day is an American holiday, but soldiers are soldiers no matter where they’re from. They’re dirty and tired and they want to go home, but sometimes they don’t get to. If you prick them, they bleed, but it’s far more efficient to shoot them or drop bombs on them.
World has droughts, and the world has famines, and there’s never enough love, but the world always has more dead soldiers than anyone knows what to do with. Tough enough to remember the ones we have; maybe we should stop making more for a while.
So here’s to the Spartans, and the Sacred Band of Thebes. The Redcoats holding their lines, the Red Army holding Stalingrad, the Red Chinese at Panmunjom. From Apache to Boxer to Zulu.
And Easy Company. The 442nd, too. The Tuskegee Airmen, and the crews in the Liberators and Flying Fortresses they shepherded. The 54th from Massachusetts, and the Florida Irregulars. The Rough Riders. The Huey pilots in the gunships and slicks up in the sky, and the tunnel rats under the jungle soil. Deuce-and-a-half drivers supplying the front line along the Red Ball Express. Jimmy Doolittle and his Raiders, and the men still at their stations on the Arizona.
All the boys over there, and the ones under our feet, too.
There won’t be a Christmas eventually. It’ll go the way of Saturnalia. There will always be a Memorial Day, because there will always be a reason for Memorial Day.