The Lesson of D-Day

Cape Cod Times Letters, June 5, 2015

The question of whether ISIS represents a threat to the homeland, possibly warranting some use of American military ground forces, is not an easy one. Jim Coogan’s column (“Contemporary lessons from D-Day,” June 2) does not advance an intelligent discussion.

His stated ad hominem reason for opposition is that of three of the many thoughtful Americans who fear involvement may be necessary, Sen. Marco Rubio and columnist Charles Krauthammer have not served in the military, and most of Sen. Lindsey Graham’s 20 years of military service was in the Air Force Reserve — and as a judge advocate general at that.

Graham has been to Normandy, and his military service is more than nearly all Americans who have come of age in the generation since the abolition of the draft. Krauthammer has been confined to a wheelchair since he was of military age.

I have been to the sacred, awesome and terrible battleground and cemetery at Normandy too, so perhaps Coogan would consider me qualified to comment. The real lesson of Normandy is that the carnage might have been averted had the Western democracies stood up to Hitler’s tyranny earlier.

Brian R. Merrick

West Barnstable

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