Monday, November 12, 2007

A Great Veteran's Day Story - Troops Made US Citizens In Afghanistan

Today was a doubly special day for sixty U.S. service members from countries including Cuba, Ethiopia, the Philippines and Vietnam as they became American citizens on today during a ceremony in Afghanistan.

Maj. Gen. David Rodriguez, the commander of U.S. forces in Afghanistan, congratulated the soldiers on their new citizenship and thanked them for the oath they took to defend the United States.

"Today they will swear a second oath to the country they've already pledged to defend," Rodriguez said. "An oath of allegiance to the nation they are supporting as a member of her armed forces, deployed in harm's way, defending the citizens of the world from terrorism.

"There is no better way to recognize the sacrifices they are making here than to grant them the right to call themselves U.S. citizens," Rodriguez said at the main U.S. base at Bagram.

The servicemen were also addressed at the ceremony by Christopher Dell, the deputy chief of mission at the U.S. Embassy in Kabul,who told the soldiers that their presence in Afghanistan, in uniform, is the "greatest possible testament to your readiness for citizenship."

"As you sit here today you have already sacrificed tremendously for our country," he said. "You have left your families behind, endured difficult training and placed yourself in great danger, all to serve America before you could truly call her your own."

A day earlier, more than 150 American soldiers in Iraq were sworn in as U.S. citizens during a ceremony at the Balad Air Base in Balad, north of Baghdad...and over 20,000 servicemen have earned citizenship in our military since 2002.

People who favor amnesty for illegal aliens apparently have no problem with the idea of placing the sort of committed citizens profiled here on the same level with illegal aliens whose first act was to cut in line by breaking our country's laws.

I have a feeling that these new Americans, who earned their citizenship with blood sweat and toil might just have a problem with that attitude.

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