To the Editor:
.I propose Warwick establish an Enemies Memorial and Enemies Memorial Day. I propose that such a memorial honor all our enemies. We can start with the Lenape, continue on to the British, Mexicans, Spanish, Germans, Italians,Japanese, Koreans and even Somalians - military humanitarian relief efforts have enemies too.
Vietnamese enemies hold a special place in my heart. I served in Viet Nam in 1969. Now there are the Iraqis and Afghans. This list is far too short for our enemies list. Add your own. I am writing this from Berlin, Germany. I went to the biggest (there are many) Soviet Army War Memorial and Cemetery. More than 7,000 Red Army soldiers are buried there.
More than 22,000 Soviet soldiers were killed in the Battle of Berlin. They brought the war to an end. Their deaths saved American lives. Then the Soviet Union, our ally, became our enemy. My father served in a fighter squadron in World War II. I know he got to Germany. I don’t know if he got to Berlin. Now I wonder if he ever shook the hand of a Soviet soldier.
It was while I visited the memorial that I began to think about a memorial for the Vietnamese Communists soldiers I fought against to be placed in Warwick’s Veterans’ Park. Might it be better to show our respects to all our fallen enemies? Might it allow some change of heart, some small shift from hate to love, from war to peace? If you keep an enemies list in your heart and you hold it with murderous rage, please pray for your enemies. Pray for their peace. Maybe they will pray for yours.