I had already sent this week’s column of “The old and the new” to my editor when President Biden announced today’s tragedy in Kabul, Afghanistan. Ironically, the news was similar to the tragedy of the subject of my intended column — the Holocaust in Nazi Germany during World War II, when about two-thirds of Europe’s Jewish population were being exterminated!
My sister and I had put together a book, entitled, “The Paperboy & His Little Sister,” and after I as the paperboy, described the horrendous and horrible Holocaust, as reported in my newspapers, my little sister would completely change the mood of the story and talk about the pleasantries and niceties of living in our wonderful and beautiful Leech Lake area when we were kids. She reminded today’s youth that we were never inside — always outside swimming or playing games. The subject, however, of so long ago surprisingly seemed so superfluous and insignificant compared to the horrendous happenings in our world today! Therefore, I decided to make the change and I sincerely hope my editor will hold the presses and keep the horrific Holocaust for another time.
With a bowed head, preventing us from seeing the solemn and imposing look on his face, President Biden described what happened Aug. 26, 2021, as the “worst day in his presidency!” He went on to announce that 13 of our U.S. military had been killed, 15 wounded, 60 civilians killed and 140 civilians wounded when a new group of terrorists called, “ISIS-K,” claimed responsibility for the suicide bombing of the Baron Hotel, which was near the Afghanistan Airport in Kabul. The President pledged, with an extremely serious, sedate, stern and determined look on his face, “America will not be intimidated. We will hunt you down and make you pay!”
As you read these extremely strong and threatening words, please keep in mind this is not just Joe Biden talking — the President of the United States of America has conferred with his Secretary of State, the Department of Defense, many of the top U.S. generals and admirals in his cabinet, and many other expert military personnel, before he makes a statement such as that.
Our state of Minnesota has two connections to this devastating news story, as our Minnesota National Guard played an important role in the military movements involved, and many of the refugees that have been able to leave Afghanistan are now stationed in Camp McCoy, Wis., and very soon will be coming to Minnesota.
In addition to President Biden’s “worst day in his presidency,” the evening news continued to report that COVID-19 and its Delta Variant cases are continuing to sky-rocket. There have been over 150,000 cases of the dreaded disease in the United States during this past week. And before the month of December, 100,000 men, women and children in our country will die!
Please, please, if you haven’t already, get vaccinated! The two primary subjects of this evening’s news — the terrible tribulations in Afghanistan and this devastating disease together are both considered to be “close-up wars” in today’s events. And certainly, I would never have the intelligence nor the courage to use the words of the news commentator when he reported, “The offensive and foul breath of today’s happenings are searching upon us!”
The words are without a doubt newsworthy and worth considering.
By the way, my sister and I have been selling our book, “The Paperboy & His Little Sister” during Crazy Days in front of Benson’s and we have a few copies left. Any surplus will be given to a Veteran’s Memorial the Walker American Legion is planning to put up somewhere in our little town. If you are interested in purchasing a copy, simply send your check for $25, which includes postage and handling, made out to “Little Sister” and mail to Box 841, Walker, MN 56484.
May God bless the veterans of the Afghanistan War. God bless you, and if you haven’t already — get vaccinated! And God bless America!
The views and opinions expressed in the “The old and the new” column belong solely to the author, and not The Pilot-Independent or an organization, committee or individual.