It is difficult to imagine staying away from our families and friends for years on end and not even getting an opporunity to meet them during Christmas or Thanksgiving. But when we are busy packing our bags to catch the next flight back home, the American soldiers are fighting for our freedom and protection in unbearable climactic conditions and foreign lands.
I am writing this post to honor those courageous young soldiers in my own special way. Stephen Crane in his novel, 'The Red Badge Of Courage' describes the experience in the life of a teenager when he first steps on to the battlefield. The initital fear and uncertainty of a novice slowly transforms itself into a desire to prove one's mettle and crush his adversary. This spirit survives even today but it is targetted against man's faceless enemy, terrorism.
Yesterday, my closest friend's brother Jim who is posted in Iraq, sent her a note saying that he may not be able to make it home for Christmas. As expected, she burst out crying but along with the tears, I found respect and great pride exuding as well. Jim has been away from home for quite a while but even today his letters express love, gratitude and appreciation for United States of America. Working in dismal weather conditions surrounded by enemies on all sides has not dimmed his spirits. In fact, in addition to feeling sad at not being able to spend time with his family, he also mentioned what he would like his Christmas gift to be- The American Flag.
Its time to show your support, love and affection as well as gratitude to these brave warriors so as to make them feel remembered and closely connected to their fellow Americans during Christmas. Click on the link below for the same:

I am also planning to send Christmas ecards to these soldiers shedding their sweat and blood for us from which has a section dedicated to American troops. This is my way of saluting them and if possible those families as well whose sons are out there making them and the nation proud.
Lets keep the stars and stripes flying high.