October 20, 2003

Changing the World, One Shipment at a Time

DEAN ESMAY has published an update on Operation Give, a private effort which an active-duty U.S. soldier on tour in Iraq began to give Iraqi children toys, candy, and other sundry items. It is perhaps no surprise to our historically-minded readers that the program is based on a similar effort done in Germany after the Second World War.

However, back in the old days, they didn't have the Internet.

In the three weeks since the publicity effort got underway, the group has raised $8,000, secured corporate sponsorship, has warehouses in Baltimore and Baghdad, and a corps of volunteers in both the United States and Iraq to assist them with shipping and distribution. Last but certainly not least, hundreds upon hundreds of boxes of goods have been sent to needy Iraqi children.

For a few reasons, we think this is an incredible accomplishment. But we would go even farther and say that it is a world-changing one as well.

For this effort is not simply a testament to the goodness of average Americans, and to their senses of compassion, charity and kindness. Were it solely that, it would be powerful in its own right. But more importantly, Operation Give is winning over the hearts and minds of hundreds -- if not thousands -- of Iraqi children and their families.

The people behind it are not merely creating gratitude and appreciation towards our nation and its men in uniform. They are also offering their hands in friendship to a long-suffering and tired people. We would suggest that their doing so increases the chance that Iraqis will respond in kind. We would further suggest that this will lend support to our rebuilding efforts, and that in turn will help the Iraqi people create a nation which will serve as a beacon of freedom and hope to all who suffer under tyranny.

Therefore, we would submit that we and all Americans owe a debt of thanks to Chief Wiggles, the blogger-soldier behind the effort, and all those who have taken the time and consideration to offer their aid.

May God bless you and your efforts.

Posted by Benjamin Kepple at October 20, 2003 10:03 PM | TrackBack