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PROUD TO FIGHT FOR OUR FREEDOMS -- (Senate - September 18, 2006)

Mr. ENZI. Mr. President, every day when the Wyoming papers come out, my staff in Wyoming looks through them and makes sure that information that is in them reaches me here in Washington in a timely way so that action then can be taken or information can be received or questions can be answered or people's personal problems that have been caused by the Federal Government can be taken care of.

Recently, there was a letter to the editor from a young man in our military. It appeared in the Torrington Telegram. It has a very important message for our country that I wanted to share with the country. These are the feelings of a young man serving in the military. I appreciate his effort in putting this letter in a Wyoming paper. I hope it makes several papers in Wyoming. I am going to make sure the people across America hear the message he is delivering to Americans. It is an important message for Americans, but apparently it is one on which the media is reluctant to report. So I am going to work to help him deliver the message.

Here is his letter. It is from Lee Freeburg:

I am a U.S. Navy Corpsman, having returned home for some relax time. I was reading through the Telegram and came across a letter to the editor titled ``Bush using fear tactics.''

I am appalled by the disrespect to the president of the great nation and the U.S. troops in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The president is doing his best to guide our country and keep us free. He is not the only one who makes decisions, (hence we are not a dictatorship.) Have we forgotten that we also have a House of Representatives and a Senate? This collection of Americans is Congress. For the president to send our troops, our sons and daughters to war, it takes an act of Congress.

Sailor Freeburg continues:

I am proud to serve my country and my president, defending and bringing freedom to people all around the world.

I am outraged by people's attitudes toward this war; have we so soon forgotten 9-11? They attacked us first on our soil. .....

Have you ever seen the look of gratitude in people's faces for the liberation from a dictatorship?

Then you do not understand what we (the U.S. troops stationed abroad) are doing.

We as Americans take our freedom so lightly and we need to stop and think. How did we come about to have these freedoms? Well, war. War earned our freedom, and war has kept it, from the American War for Independence to Operation Iraqi Freedom. Men have fallen, paid the ultimate price so that we as Americans can enjoy living without dictators like Hitler, Stalin and Saddam Hussein.

Sailor Freeburg goes on to write:

While other countries are building fences to keep people in, we have to build fences to keep people out. Now if the president were a dictator, would people be trying to float 90 miles across rough water on a wooden door, drinking their own urine, just to set one foot on American soil?

Where are the iron gates and armed guards? Where are the mass graves of innocent citizens, murdered for disloyalty to the dictator? There are none to be found on our soil. They do not exist. Why? Because we do not live under a dictator. Was President Lincoln a dictator? No, he even had to go to war with the south for freedoms we still enjoy today.

In closing, if this was a war for oil, why haven't we just taken over the entire country of Iraq and added it as the 51st state? I am proud to say, I am a gun-carrying Republican, and honored to be a part of the greatest nation on earth.

America, be thankful for the freedom we enjoy because freedom is never free.

That is one of many letters that I receive wondering why more things are not said about the way the war is going in Iraq from the perspective of our troops who are over there, who are talking to the people who are affected by it.

Our troops are affected by what they hear and read from over here. They get their local newspapers. They get letters, and they want their message out, too. This is a perspective from a young man serving in our military, one of many.

A few years ago, one of the TV stations that goes into schools across this country did a show called ``Young Men Who Saved the World.'' It was about World War II. The reason they ran this show was because there were a lot of reunions happening among soldiers who had been a part of World War II, and they were all old guys. The people in the schools were getting the impression that the war had been fought by old guys. So this channel that goes into these schools did this special broadcast.

What they did was go back and find the pictures of these men when they actually served in the military. They were young men. It made a distinct impression on the kids of this country that there were young people out there recognizing the value of freedom, the value of democracy, and willing to put their lives on the line to see that it was shared around the world.

I thank you, Sailor Freeburg, for your letter and for the message that needs to be delivered to the United States.

I yield the floor and suggest the absence of a quorum.