Today, Michael Yon relased a dispatch from his embedded position in Iraq. The battle has begun and our brave men will fight Al Qaeda. Here is a short excerpt of his dispatch:
Be Not Afraid
You shall cross the barren desert, but you shall not die of thirst. You shall wander far in safety though you do not know the way. You shall speak your words in foreign lands and all will understand. You shall see the face of God and live.
Be not afraid.
I go before you always;
Come follow me, and I will give you rest.
[From a prayer card I found on a base in Anbar Province, Iraq.]
Thoughts flow on the eve of a great battle. By the time these words are released, we will be in combat.
This is a must-read. Read the remaining dispatch here.
Keep our brave soldiers in your prayers as the battle rages. Al Qaeda is a brutal enemy, and our men need God’s strength as they meet them in battle. Our troops will prevail in this hard fight.
And, I close with one of my favorite quotes from Shakespeare’s Henry V:
This day is called the feast of Crispian:
He that outlives this day and comes safe home,
Will stand a tip-toe when this day is named,
And rouse him at the name of Crispian.
He that shall live this day, and see old age,
Will yearly on the vigil feast his neighbours,
And say, ‘To-morrow is Saint Crispian:’
Then will he strip his sleeve and show his scars,
And say, ‘These wounds I had on Crispin’s day.’
Old men forget: yet all shall be forgot,
But he’ll remember with advantages
What feats he did that day. Then shall our names,
Familiar in his mouth as household words,
Harry the King, Bedford and Exeter,
Warwick and Talbot, Salisbury and Gloucester,
Be in their flowing cups freshly remembered.
This story shall the good man teach his son;
And Crispin Crispian shall ne’er go by,
From this day to the ending of the world,
But we in it shall be rememberèd;
We few, we happy few, we band of brothers;
For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
Shall be my brother; be he ne’er so vile
This day shall gentle his condition:
And gentlemen in England, now a-bed
Shall think themselves accursed they were not here,
And hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks
That fought with us upon Saint Crispin’s day.
Godspeed, brave soldiers.