I recently attended a showing of "Superman 3"
here at LSA Anaconda.
We have a large auditorium we use for movies as well as memorial services
and other large gatherings.
As is the custom back in the States, we stood and snapped to attention
when the National Anthem began before the main feature.
All was going as planned until about three-quarters of the way through the
National Anthem the music stopped.
Now, what would happen if this occurred with 1,000 18-22 year-olds back in
I imagine there would be hoots, catcalls, laughter, a few rude comments,
and everyone would sit down and call for a movie.
Of course, that is, if they had stood for the National Anthem in the first
Here, the 1,000 soldiers continued to stand at attention, eyes fixed
The music started again ... the soldiers continued to quietly stand at
And again, at the same point, the music stopped. What would you expect to
Even here I would imagine laughter as everyone sat down and expected the
movie to start.
Here, you could have heard a pin drop ... every soldier stood at
Suddenly there was a lone voice, then a dozen, and quickly the room was
filled with the voices of a thousand soldiers ...
'And the rockets
red glare, the bombs bursting in air, gave proof through the night that
our flag was still there. O say does that star-spangled banner yet wave,
o'er the land of the free and the home of the brave?'
It was the most inspiring moment I have had here in Iraq.
I wanted you to know what kind of Soldiers are serving you here...
=================== Written by Chaplain
Jim Higgins on 5/14/07. LSA Anaconda is at the Balad Airport in Iraq,
north of Bagdad.