When the music stopped…

From a friend on the pointy end, from LSA Anaconda, Iraq…

For those unaware, the National Anthem is played before every showing in a military motion picture theater.

At a recent movie, in the large auditorium, we stood up and snapped to attention when the National Anthem began before the main feature. About 3/4 of the way through, the music stopped…

Now what would have happened in the States with about 1000 18-22 year olds? Hoots, catcalls, laughter, etc; and everyone would sit down and call for a movie; assuming they had stood in the first place.

Here, the 1000 soldiers continued to stand at attention, eyes fixed forward as the music started again. They continued at attention; and again, at the same point, the music stopped. What would you expect to happen? Even here I would have imagined laughter, as everyone finally sat down and expected the movie to start.

But here, you could have heard a pin drop. Every Soldier continued to stand at attention; suddenly there was a lone voice, then a dozen, and quickly the room filled with the voices of a thousand soldiers, finishing where the recording left off:

“And the rockets’ red glare, the bombs bursting in air, gave proof through the night that our flag was still there. Oh, say does that Star Spangled Banner yet wave, o’er the land of the free, and the home of the brave”.

It was the most inspiring moment I have had here in Iraq. I wanted you to know what kind of Soldiers are serving you here. Remember them as they fight for you!

Folks, please take a moment and remember those Soldiers, Sailors, Marines and Airmen who are on the front lines in our war against TERROR. I am NOT going to be PC about it, they ARE out to kill us…

This also brings to mind a conversation from the range today- Four old military guys (1 WWII, 1 Korea, 2 of us youngsters) and a retired Judge. In between firing, we were discussing the 2nd Amendment (gee, we are ALL for it..), and the so called torture (three of us have been waterboarded as part of our military training) and an interesting point was raised…

Lets have those hearings! Lets get ALL the info out on the table- Declassify the results now that the procedures have been declassified. Lets get a TRUE definition of torture. Lets get ALL those House and Senate Armed Services and Intelligence Committee members to testify under oath, lets get the last 4-5 heads of the CIA up there, lets get the lawyers up there that drafted the memos! Lets have a REAL hearing, open to the public!

THEN, let the AMERICAN PEOPLE decide who was right and who was wrong…

I did not hear a single good word said about any of the Congresscritters today- In my opinion, they no longer care about the people they are supposed to represent, all they care about is getting re-elected by hook, crook, lies or pork- What ever will put their fat asses back on the Hill.

*blink, blink*

Even the Judge was down on them, and he actually said term limits are something whose time has come.

Kicking the soapbox back in the corner now… sigh…

Oh yeah, fun was had at the range- I got minute-of-angle on the barn, since I was inside it 🙂


When the music stopped… — 14 Comments

  1. Thank you for sharing that story. Even those of us who completely support the military need them. I can’t imagine what a beautiful moment that was to witness.

  2. RT/KLR- Contrary to “popular” opinion, those in the military are NOT blood thirsty savages, killing on a whim… And yeah, term limits are LONG overdue!

  3. Just to be the devil’s advocate, the good get swept out too. Here in Colorado we are having our first legislative session after term limits kicked in. We lost some good people who, despite their personal beliefs, found ways to work together and find a common ground. I am still FOR term limits.
    The benefits, to me, out weigh the negatives.

  4. Great story about the Anthem.

    Mark Twain once said about America’s criminals; “…There is no native criminal class except Congress”

    True then and now.

  5. I’d heard this story as well. I don’t remember exactly where now, either from a blog or an e-mail list.

    I remember standing at attention in the base theater while in the Air Force. It was a constant reminder who we were and what we were.

    Good memories.

  6. Hi Jim – The anthem story was great! So much of our patriotism has disappeared since 9/11. It’s good to hear stories that stir that feeling of pride. I know I love my country! I’m glad that no matter how crappy things are going right now, I can talk about it, write about it and dream about better days. All thanks to those 18-22 year olds in those theaters all over the world. As for the congresscritters…. well I know we might lose some good folks in the process of term limits, but sometimes we have to choose the lesser of two evils.. and in this case weeding out the bollweevils gets my vote!

  7. WSF- Yes sir, we would lose some good ones, but in my opinion, the bad FAR outweigh the good! and I agree with you completely.

    Barco- Agree! That quote was mentioned at work today, and none of us could remember whether it was Twain or Will Rodgers, thanks!

    Crucis- I have started to stand up in a regular theater before… Old dog- NO tricks… sigh…

    Fuzzy- Agreed!

    FF- You’re right on ALL counts! I continue to be impressed by the Sailors and Marines I come in contact with!

  8. Several years ago, at a Thunder hockey game here in Wichita, I had to “encourage” a young man to remove his toque during the National Anthem. I told him quietly and with emphasis that if he didn’t get that damn thing off of his head during the Anthem, I would do so for him. And that there was the possibilty that it would hurt.
    I still remember being in the Station Theatres at Norfolk, Chase Field, Whidbey Island and Lemoore when everyone stood for the Anthem. and now the “bombs bursting in air” is cause for the popper to come out. Sad behaviour by my own countrymen, sad indeed.

  9. Great Post NFO!

    That was one thing I loved watching movies at the Base Theater, When they play the National Anthem.

    Talk about memories.

  10. Anon- Thanks for doing that! And thanks for your service.

    ADM- Yep, it does bring back memories!