NATIONAL REVIEW: Pantano on decade since 9/11

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Submitted: Tue, 05/10/2011 - 3:31pm
Updated: Fri, 12/09/2011 - 2:05am

A Decade After 9/11
By: Ilario Pantano
Thank you to the families, including my own.

‘Is this as close to victory as we are ever going to get?” I wondered aloud as I absorbed the headlines. I’ve been struggling with that question, and perhaps you have too. But I have drawn some conclusions: Today, we may all feel like SEALs, but the credit doesn’t go to our military or our politicians. It goes to the military families: the spouses, the children, and the parents who have made this long war possible.

We’ve been at war for a decade, and only 1 percent of this country has any idea of what that actually means. Neither Barack Obama nor George W. Bush has kissed his wife goodbye four, five, or six times to go into the unknown.

Last night, our friend Rachel was over for dinner with her two-year-old son Henry. My boys love to play with Henry, and when his daddy is away on a nearly year-long deployment, it’s nice for Henry’s mommy to have a few minutes of distraction. After my time in Iraq, my wife, Jill, could relate to Rachel’s struggles as a “single mom,” and we had a nice dinner talking about nothing and certainly not the family business. Henry’s dad is on his third “trip” to Afghanistan in three years, and for him, as a Marine infantry officer, the trips aren’t just long. They are dangerous.


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1 Comment on "NATIONAL REVIEW: Pantano on decade since 9/11"

2015 years 8 months ago


I believe you spent some time with Echo Company, 2/6, on your return from “Over There”.

I watched my daughter deal with the absence of the Captain when they deployed to Afghanistan and rode in the Helicopter and Convoys with Acting President Kharzi.

I watched her, just a few months later, when he deployed with Echo to Iraq and patrolled the hottest spot in Falluja. All the time she was dealing with the pending birth of my first grandson.

The troops make a supreme sacrifice. Their spouses and children deal with the daily worry about their well being throughout that deployment. That may be a tougher challenge.

Want to see what it’s like? Watch the movie, starring Mel Gibson, based on General Hal Moore’s book on his experiences in Vietnam.