World War Two Vets Talk About War Against Iraq - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

03/24/03

World War Two Vets Talk About War Against Iraq

The war against Iraq is a much talked about topic at the Armed Forces Retirement Home.

Patriots from an earlier era are following the conflict closely and don't mind sharing their opinions about it.

"This United States is the closest heaven you'll ever get until you get there," said Red Hammack as he talked about today's war and today's world.

They are fiercely patriotic and proud. Six veterans who represent nearly a century of military service, talked with WLOX News about the war and their memories of battle.

"My opinion is this. This war could wind up being a World War. Nobody loves the United States. Everybody envies the United States," said Hammack.

The vets are amazed at the high technology on today's battlefield. They call it "Buck Rogers" warfare.

Robert Carey fought in World War Two.

"Today, you're killing somebody 30 or 40 miles away that you can't see. I don't like that. I like to see what I'm killing," he said.

"Oh gosh. You never know where it's coming from. There's no fun in it anymore. You don't know who to shoot at," said Byron Dennis.

The group unleashed its harshest verbal ammo at the media coverage of the war and war protesters.

Dr. Tommie Lucas-Peterson served in World War Two. She despises the protesters.

"They're against not just the war. They 're just against. Period. Everything they can think of. If they're not proud enough of this country, leave it. I'll pay for it," she said.

As for the media, these vets prefer the likes of Ernie Pyle and Edward R. Murrow. They say imbedded reporters, crosses the line.

"News media will try and make news. The best way was how they handled it in the second World War. You brought them into a pool, talked to them and told them what they wanted to tell them. And they could ask questions. If they didn't like the answers, ship 'em home," said R.J. Rolak.

The group doesn't believe our troops will be coming home anytime soon.

"I'm not a betting man. But if I was, I'd lay a lot of money that this is the beginning of the big one," said Hammack.

The group of veterans represents several branches of the armed forces. They served in the military between 1938 and 1973.

By Steve Phillips

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