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001smokin.jpgYour Page One photograph of the Marine hit me between the eyes (“Smokin’,” Nov. 10).
This guy is all-GI.
That dirty face, the whiskers on his unshaven face, the cut on the bridge of his nose, the dangling cigarette and the 1,000-yard stare in those battle weary eyes tell the story of what’s really going on in Fallujah.
His features are reminiscent of the renowned World War II GI that Mattel replicated to make its GI Joe.
Forget about these Pentagon generals with their spotless dress uniforms, spit-shined shoes, $100 haircuts and shiny, manicured nails.
This guy’s nails and hands are laced with blood. His sweaty body smells from sleeping in the sand. His breath stinks from eating field rations.
As the winds of November blow across Indiana, I sit comfortably drinking coffee as this guy, and thousands of other GIs, bravely and valiantly battle throughout the filth and stench of these Fallujah neighborhoods.
You are the best, and we think of you in the spirit of Veterans Day.
Earl Beal
Terre Haute, Ind.
Related: Everybody’s smokin’.

7 replies on “No Comment” Stations won’t show “Saving Private Ryan” citing “recent FCC actions and last week’s re-election of President Bush as reasons for replacing “Saving Private Ryan” on Thursday with a music program and the TV movie “Return to Mayberry.”
What a real soldier looks like? Forget about it.

Dan Rather ended Wednesday’s broadcast with a long, sentimental, patriotic piece about the American soldier. This photograph was on screen the whole time, until they cut back to him, audibly choked up and on the verge of tears. He was suggesting that teachers show the picture to their students and explain its significance.
Maybe this is stating the obvious, but (apart from the one Maura brilliantly pointed out) isn’t there a similar photo from WWII of soldier with a cigarette? Taken by Robert somebody, possibly for Life magazine? Or maybe it’s just Humphrey Bogart I’m thinking of.

Good Morning, Vietnam.
I have to say that is one cool picture. However, it breaks my heart to think of what our young men are going through in Iraq and what they will be when they return. No man just embarking on his life should know how it feels to be battle weary and to watch his friends die.

ah, poor guy.
he just had to watch the airforce bomb the shit out of a small town of iraqis who (rightfully) resist occupation by an army of corporate hitmen…

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