OPINION: On Veterans Day, I thank hostile nations for my retirement pay
Shout outs are due!
Sure, American veterans get their day, but what about the other side?
AMERICA — As a veteran of military service to this great nation, I get my share of love. I mean, sure I could always use a little more. Maybe a lot more. Is ten percent off really that much at Home Depot? Maybe a once a once-a-month free Chicken Parm is a little more in keeping with all I did to keep the Kandahar DFAC safe from fake IDs there, Olive Garden? But let’s not make this about me, at least not till I’ve had a sixer of Keystone Ice. Let’s talk about the real MVPs.
Do you know who gets left out of the equation when America starts passing around “Thank you for your services” on November 11th? Al Qaeda. The Taliban. ISIS. Imperial Japan. The Nazis. North Korea. Vietnam. Wagner Group. Hezbollah. Iran. Boko Haram and the MILF (all kinds of them, if you know what I mean). And hell, let’s not forget Italy, China, North Korea, the Confederacy, and those wacky Lobsterbacked British Royal Army types.
Those people wrote a check up to and including their lives and, in the process, the soldiers, terrorists, and revolutionaries who vowed to destroy America gave me IRS combat zone exclusions for eleven TDYs to Incirlik Air Base that crossed over the next month. Kudos to my enemies for fattening twenty-two of my paychecks!
May the peace, mercy, and blessings of Allah be upon the terrorists who arranged my tax-free tour of duty in Saudi Arabia where most of them came from. I visited La Casa Cubana in Riyadh and smoked a 1962 Cohiba in their honor! My wallet swelled with pride for Al Qaeda’s spiritual homeland when President Bush held hands with King Abdullah. Without the Taliban, I would have missed out on the tax-free re-enlistment bonus I leveraged to buy a sweet Ford Mustang.
Even the Cold War was good for me. I took vacations to Switzerland while stationed in Germany, staring across the wall at international communism. I bought a Rolex on the cheap when Ronald Reagan’s “Star Wars” defense program raised the dollar exchange rate to piss off Mikhail Gorbachev. Thanks, guys! Couldn’t have done it without both of you.
We had OPLANs in the Cold War to invade Ukraine. Now Russia is doing it while our troops get hazard pay for just sitting around, those lucky bastards.
My annual COLA hinges on the threats of narcissistic dictators and I cried when Kim Jong-Il shuffled off his mortal coil. I thought, “Oh no, North Korea will become our friend and the BX will sell TVs made in Pyongyang!” But then his craziest son picked up the nuclear scepter and my purse strings rejoiced.
I thank Syria whenever a cashier thanks me 10% for my service. I do it because I feel America only gives President Bashar al-Assad 10% credit for his war crimes. Keep trying, sir! My Star Card points depend on it.
Every Veterans Day, I praise Iraq’s information minister for all my gratis chow. This year, I’ll nab a McPTSD meal for lunch at the McDonald’s next to the VA clinic. And for dinner? I’m going to the civilian DFAC known as Golden Corral. Cha-ching!
Hostile nations. Multinational terrorist groups. You guys are the real heroes on Veterans Day. And as I reflect on how much I enjoy a defined benefit annuity, lifetime health care, and a host of other benefits you guys have never even envisioned, let me just say “Thank you for my service.”
Robin Berger is a retired Air Force NCO who sings Cuba’s national anthem every first day of the month.
Report for Casual Duty
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