Remembering the Cole

Remembering the Cole

Posted by lex, on October 12, 2005

 

Five years ago today al Qaeda-linked terrorists brought a small boat alongside the Arleigh Burke-class destroyer USS Cole, and blew a hole in her side. Seventeen Sailors died, and the rest struggled like heroes in horrible conditions to keep her afloat.

They succeeded.

The dedication of her crew, as well as the US Navy’s hard-won experience in ship construction and damage control, ensured that the ship would survive this test, and return to the fight.

Although we didn’t know it at the time, the attempt to sink the Cole was just another unanswered blow in what was for eight years a one-sided contest: The 1993 WTC bombing, the 1996 attack on the USAF barracks in Saudi’s Khobar Towers and the bombings of US embassies in the east African countries of Kenya and Tanzania. Goaded at last beyond endurance by the attacks on our homeland on 9/11, the slumbering American giant awoke and went to war. And in the fury of our righteous anger, we freed 30 million minds.

Some of whom recently had an election.

Others of whom are preparing for a constitutional referendum.

A very few of whom, are fighting the process tooth and nail. And, for the most part, getting their collective asses kicked. While asking for a handout from their Sheik. From whom, no recent word has been heard. (And no, I don’t think we’re that lucky. But I can hope.)

Seventeen dead Sailors and a wounded ship, whom each will remember in their own way. There is a monument to them in Norfolk.

Me? I want to remember the Cole like this:

Remembering the Cole

USS Cole

The way she is right now.

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Filed under Best of Neptunus Lex, Carroll "Lex" LeFon, Carroll LeFon, Lex, Tales Of The Sea Service

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