Realizing that communications have changed a great deal since my military service, when things like satellites were unheard of, I was still quite sad to hear that the Stars & Stripes was being discontinued. The rumors that were around several months ago were that President Trump was the one who wanted to pull the plug. Of course, once the decision became very unpopular with service members and veterans, Mr. Trump decided to blame Department of Defense and take the credit for restoring publication of the Stars & Strips newspaper.
When I first became aware of the paper being discontinued, my first thought was that something must have been published that was not flattering to the president. This is par for the course now.
After graduating from high school in 1958 I enlisted in the U.S. Air Force. Of the eight years I spent in the Air Force, almost five of those years were spent overseas. As any veteran can tell you, the Stars & Stripes would find you almost anywhere you were in the world. It was sometimes your quickest way to get the news. As a matter of fact, I was in my last overseas tour from August 1965 until November 1966 when in the autumn of 1965 I read in the sports section that this small college, Susquehanna University, had dismissed their head football coach, Jim Garrett, and the university president, Gus Weber, was taking over as the head coach. Wow, it was like, “Hey guys, look at this, it’s my hometown where this happened.” Who ever thought Selinsgrove would be national news in those days?
Incidentally, when I enlisted in the Air Force and then later when I went to work with the U.S. Postal Service, I took an oath to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States. Recently I replied to what I think was an ad for a local politician on social media in a way that didn’t seem very harsh to me. Some person told me that I was a “liberal, socialistic communist” who should leave the country. I think I’ve been out of the country long enough.
Now it’s your turn.
Richard W. Herbert,