Eagle County vet upset at reference in column | VailDaily.com

Eagle County vet upset at reference in column

Buddy Sims
Vail, CO, Colorado

Ref: “The difference between the skier who dies in the East Vail chutes and the soldier who dies in Iraq is that the former pays for his own poor judgment and the latter pays for someone else’s. Poor judgment over Iraq, where there was no comprehensive plan beyond the initial invasion …” Vail Daily, Commentary, Nov. 23, 2008.

In America, the U.S. president makes the call on who and when we go to war, not the individual soldier. Whether it is President Clinton, President Bush, or our new President-elect Obama, we salute and go to war without a “soldiers’ approval committee meeting.”

Your obvious political feelings have found their way into a commentary on economic bailouts. How sad for you to take this approach and how insulting to the American combat soldiers serving in Operation Iraq Freedom.

Your comparison of the modern American soldier’s judgment to serve in Iraq and die for his country to a skier who dies in the East Vail chutes is a complete affront to our active duty U.S. military and all those over 23 million veterans in America.

Your byline says you served and retired from the British military and I publicly question whether you ever served or were even in the British military or you would have never made this statement in the press. Can you prove with a comparable DD-214 (our U.S. military discharge document) your honorable British military service? Are you a combat veteran from the UK or just another wannabe veteran who never served a day and are trying to get away with an insult to our forces and country?

Seventy percent of all the soldiers who served in Vietnam were volunteers and today 100 percent of the U.S. military are volunteers fighting in Iraq and all over the world to protect our freedoms. As volunteers, if we don’t like the administration or war, we vote with our feet and become civilians again. Our American soldiers would not be serving if they did not believe in the GWOT and have the best of judgments! Words do matter in a Vail commentary and your words about our soldiers are unnerving, insulting, and demeaning to our soldiers serving in Eagle County and this nation.

I request a public apology in the Vail Daily for your use of these derogatory words comparing our members of the armed forces to skiers dying in the East Vail chutes.

Buddy Sims

OIF Combat Veteran

Support Local Journalism