This past weekend Americans stopped to remember the veterans of the wars in which we as a country have been engaged. Our debt to these men and women can never be repaid for their service. For those of us, who never have been in the heat of battle, heard the terrifying sounds of bullets and mortars, held wounded comrades who will for the rest of their lives carry the scars physically or mentally of these wars or held dying comrades, we can not know the true horrors of war.
We can see the effects of these conflicts at the Veterans Homeless Shelter on State Street where hundreds of once proud military fighters have been reduced to living a life on the streets. This weekend hopefully gave us pause to remember and think of what we can do to help these men and women who have done so much for us.
In this the 50th anniversary of the Cuban Missile Crisis, we should remember that negotiations by Russia and the United States prevailed over war and a nuclear death. Today, we look at the world not as so large but so small due to the technology where nuclear missiles can reach any spot in the world within minutes. We view with alarm the present trend for the proliferation of nuclear weapons in smaller countries like Iran and North Korea. We view with alarm how our intentions of intervening in the affairs of volatile regions like the Middle East seems to be hurting us more than helping us.
Isolationism is not the answer. Our road of direct intervention is not the answer either for the long term. If history can teach us anything, we must learn from the Cuban Missile Crisis and remember that the man who resorts to violence is the man who has run out of ideas.
Let us hope that our leaders and the leaders of other nations do not run out of ideas. The alternative is unthinkable. This should be one lesson of Veteran’s Day.