To My Fellow Marines: Happy Birthday!

November 8, 2007

(Smitten Eagle’s Note: I offer this post a bit early, as the actual birthday is 10 November. However, my unit celebrated the birthday of my Corps on 3 November, and many units celebrate this hallowed and special time on days they are able and according to their circumstances.)

It’s been another year of history for my beloved Corps.

Through this year the Marine Corps has fought through deployment, training, and combat. It has been a year of marked success against the enemies in the Long War. Yet these engagements are merely the first steps in the marathon of this war. This war will tax our reserves of strength and endurance, and therefore we must allow ourselves a rest, once a year, as our situation will allow, to reflect, rededicate, and recommit.

This time of rest will be held in great banquet halls, and in combat outposts. It will be held in restaurants, and in fighting holes. It will be held with those present to our left and right, and in communion with the memory of those who have gone before us.

Our Birthday is a time to relax with our camerades, to reflect on the depth of our commitments, and to rededicate ourselves to the Constitution and to eachother.

Our Birthday is a time of great cheer. But it is also a time embittered with sadness as we remember of the sacrifices of those Marines who have died on the battlefields.

Our Birthday is a time to recommit to our families, be they spouses and children, or members of the same fire time. For on with their strength do we get the resolve to take another 30-inch step to the sound of the guns.

Our Birthday is a time to strengthen ourselves for the fights in the future, because this war will continue. No doubt, there will be Marines in contact with the enemy on night of 10 November, 2008, 2018, and possibly even in 2028. Victory is not located on the other side of the next hill, but many hills away.

And now General Conway‘s Birthday Message:

Semper Fidelis, My Brothers

May God bless you all!