Memorial Day 2013: Questions

Eagle, Globe, and Anchor

The Marine Corps emblem—an Eagle, Globe, and Anchor—at Arlington National Cemetery.

“We lose ourselves when we compromise the very ideals that we fight to defend. And we honor those ideals by upholding them not just when it is easy, but when it is hard.” —Barack Obama, 2009

On this Memorial Day, our thoughts are on the cost of war.

We knew what we were getting into. So did our Marines, most of whom joined after September 11th or had reenlisted to stay around.

And we know that war is a continuation of policy, that the young men and women who lost their lives didn’t set that policy. They joined to fight. They joined to serve. They joined because they believed in this nation.

But walking through Arlington Cemetery, we can’t help but be struck by more questions than answers.

Was it worth it? What did America gain from these years at war? For what did these men and women lose their lives?