Photo by Edward F. Palm)

About Me

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Forest, Virginia, United States
A long time ago, my sophomore English teacher, Father William Campbell, saw something in my writing and predicted that I would someday become a newspaper columnist. He suggested the perfect title for my column--"Leaves of the Palm." Now that I have a little extra time on my hands I've decided to put Father Campbell's prediction to the test. I'm going to start using this blog site not just to reprint opinion pieces I've published elsewhere but to try to get more of my ideas and opinions out there. Feedback is welcome. To find out more about me, please check out my Web site: www.EdwardFPalm.com (Click on any of the photos below for an enlarged view.)

Friday, January 13, 2012

The Latest Military Scandal

Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta was right to call the video of Marines urinating on the corpses of Taliban fighters in Afghanistan “utterly deplorable.”  I agree.  There are certain values we cannot let go of, even in extremis, and remain human.  But I am not surprised that it happened.  Anyone wondering why should perhaps turn back to my column of Nov. 10:  Reality and Reflections on Veterans Day
      The one factor in mitigation I would point to is the nature of the enemy today’s Marines are now facing.
      I always felt that the Viet Cong and the North Vietnamese Army didn’t hate us.  It was just a war; it wasn’t personal.  They didn’t despise everything we stood for.  They didn’t behead American prisoners of war.  They only wanted us and our influence out of their country. 
     To the Taliban and al-Qaeda, however, we’re “infidels.”  Not just our presence, but our very existence threatens the theocratic paradise they envision.  Our troops certainly feel and understand that, making this a much more bitter war than mine was.  --EFP

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