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July 27, 2005

Song Of Solomon

Set me as a seal upon your heart

Soldier Embrace.jpg

As a seal upon your arm;


For love is strong as death,
passion fierce as the grave.


If one offered for love all the wealth of one's house, it would be utterly scorned.

Thanks to CKC, keeper of my faith.


Yes, I'm about as subtle as a freight train. Get over it.

Update: Thanks to a very special lady, Michelle Malkin. The Marine Corps could have no greater friend.

I am speechless.

If you'd like to give, but would like to choose another venue, Blackfive and Joe Katz at Winds of Change have compiled extensive lists of ways to support the troops. But I'll be very happy if you'll consider supporting the Semper Fi fund.

Something you may not know: the Marines make up only 11% of our armed forces, yet they have suffered 30% of the combat fatalities in the GWOT. Despite this, they continue to exceed recruiting goals.

Everyone fights hard in this war, but I won't pretend the Marine Corps is not especially dear to my heart.

Thank you.

Update II: I love the Internet. I just got the nicest email from an Army SSG who wanted to correct any misimpression I may have given with my post (and he's absolutely right - I wasn't thinking):

... just thought I'd mention that of the pictures you have over the Injured Marine fund, at least 2 if not all three are Army. Now true, those guys from the 11th ACR in the first picture are working for the 155th Armored BDE (my old unit) and they are working for the MEF [Ed. note: Marine Expeditionary Force], but they are Army even though news reports keep referring to them as Marines.

We exchanged emails, I explained that I really didn't mean to mislead anyone (my post didn't refer to the warriors as Marines, but my insertion of the Semper Fi link might lead a reasonable person to believe they were). This didn't really occur to me because I assumed the patches on the sleeves of two of the men would be a giveaway. What I didn't think about was that not everyone is clued into small details about uniforms. He responded that though he has since been transferred to another unit, he tracks news related to the 155th and has noticed how often they are referred to as "Marines".

I can sympathize with this because Marines get called Army all the time and it chafes them, too.

Anyway, just wanted to thank the SSG for writing and setting the record straight - I had no intention of misleading anyone. My feeling was that the first two were Army and I had no idea what the third young man was - he looks just like a young Marine Corporal I once knew and to be honest my eyes welled up with tears when I saw that photo and I thought no more of it than that.

The branch of service was not something that really signified to me at the time, and the SSG was not complaining about it. But I don't want to take anything away from the Army. That would not be right.

We are all so blessed in our Armed Forces. Where do we get such men and women?

Posted by Cassandra at July 27, 2005 08:43 AM

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Tracked on July 28, 2005 04:52 PM



Posted by: Jay at July 27, 2005 09:59 AM

Cassandra - remind me some time to get a song to you. It's a wonderful choral setting of this passage.

Posted by: Jimmie at July 27, 2005 11:31 AM

I'd like that very much Jimmie. This one is special to me.

Posted by: Cassandra at July 27, 2005 11:53 AM


Posted by: Cricket at July 27, 2005 03:05 PM

Ahhh - those are moving pics, indeed. What's a few tears among friends ...
Thanks, Cass - I needed those.

Posted by: Barb at July 27, 2005 04:27 PM

Heart-wrenchingly beautiful.

Posted by: FbL at July 27, 2005 05:27 PM

Thank you for these pictures -- they say it all.
My nephew is now being deployed in November, and I am not looking forward to that day.

Posted by: jordan at July 27, 2005 06:52 PM

These were such beautiful photos.Just warms my heart.

Posted by: Lisa Gilliam at July 27, 2005 07:43 PM

"Yes, I'm about as subtle as a freight train. Get over it."
Posted by Cassandra at July 27, 2005 08:43 AM

Sometimes, subtlety is over-rated...nothing to get over.

Posted by: camojack at July 27, 2005 09:23 PM

Liberals!!! Look! These are the men going to man our fight, Abu Ghraib, Gitmo, do you see an animal? Do you? Is there a higher love for you and me than what they leave to give? Idiots.

Posted by: Paul of York at July 27, 2005 09:29 PM

Thank you for the photos. They brought tears to my eyes. May God bless them and keep them safe.

Posted by: Michael at July 28, 2005 02:56 PM

Just lovely. My dad was a marine and served two tours in Vietnam. I love those guys!

Posted by: Lori C. at July 28, 2005 04:54 PM

These images have melted the hardness of my heart. Who would disrespect these men?

Posted by: JerryH at July 28, 2005 06:49 PM

What a lovely thing to say.

That is exactly what I hoped for, but did not dare to expect. Because you can never tell what reaction a post will have in other people.

Thank you.

Posted by: Cass at July 28, 2005 07:04 PM

Simply beautiful...these are our neighbors and friends and husbands and wives and sons and daughters...

Posted by: Brian at July 28, 2005 07:57 PM

I know how the SSG feels ... as a Redleg it always goes up my ... when ever I see a picture of a self propelled artillery piece referred to as a tank!!!

I had some Marines visit my little part of Mordor a while back, great guys. One of my favorite stories from when they were here is when a contractor was trying to go into an area restricted for safety purposes ... this young Marine walks up and tells him he can't do that and to move on ... the contrator asks 'is this your post' ... his reply, 'it's in my line of sight, so it makes it my post'!!!

Posted by: Frodo at July 29, 2005 02:05 AM

'it's in my line of sight, so it makes it my post'!!!

Oh that is *so* Marine. I can just see the body language too (well actually there are two or three flavors, depending on the guy's personality).

And that's why they get things done. I'll never forget my first month on a Marine base. I couldn't get over how they will stop each other if they see something out of whack and correct it immediately. It doesn't matter if the guy isn't in your command. It reflects on the Marine Corps.

There was very little "it's not my problem" - if it was wrong, it was noted and corrected. And this happens, often, regardless of rank - it's sort of taken for granted that you'll speak up. You may get hammered for doing it, too, (people are human) but the thing I've noticed about Marines vs. some of the other services (we're in a joint billet now and have been in several others) is that Marines will pipe right up when something doesn't seem right, sometimes even to someone senior, and that is generally accepted.

And they'll keep coming until told to shut up, at which time they'll follow the order and shut up. They figure it's their job to report observations up the line and the senior's job to tell them to pipe down if their input is not needed/wanted. And that seems about right to me.

Posted by: Cass at July 29, 2005 05:43 AM

You're right ... They will corrct any rank and do it with matter of fact respect ... I notice in the Army that when a soldier does correct someone of a higher rank, they generally do it with a smart *** tone or cocky attitude ... even when they are right, the attitude alone sets off the person ... with a Marine the correction comes off almost as a favor!!

Posted by: Frodo at July 29, 2005 06:52 AM

Tears are one of the true liberators of the heart. Thank you for the very moving loving photos of some of the young men going of to do battle against a truly evil foe, a foe that will be vanquished.

Posted by: Rick at Landstuhl at July 29, 2005 08:11 AM


I appreciate what you are doing here, so I hope you'll forgive me for pointing out the irony in that of the 3 photos, only the last one even has the possibility of the person being a Marine. The first two contain uniforms and insignia that designate them as members of that equally proud organization: the US ARMY.

I'm sure they won't mind - it's a good cause to support.

Posted by: SGT Jeff (IRR) at July 29, 2005 03:31 PM

Don't mind at all - in fact that's why I posted the clarification (above) and also why I never mentioned a branch of service in my original post.

I was worried about it when it was brought to my attention - I'm so used to looking at uniforms that frankly the possibility of confusion didn't even occur to me originally!

I never mind having that sort of thing brought to my attention. I'd rather post a million clarifications or even corrections if I'm wrong than to inadvertently cause offense through carelessness or ignorance.

And I like when people notice things and mention them - I might be embarassed for a moment, but I like to get things right and appreciate when others have an appreciation for getting things right, too :)

Posted by: Cass at July 29, 2005 03:46 PM

I don't think the first image is very appropriate. A man holding another man in his arms stinks of liberalism and "don't ask don't tell" shame. Man in the marines don't hug other men. Men in the Marines kill terrorists!

Posted by: Hector at July 29, 2005 05:11 PM

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