It's been said by others, but I will mention it again. Especially after my previous post. But it is possible to be pro soldier and anti war.
Soldiers are young men and women. As a prof, I see plenty of these young men and women, and they are filled with idealism. For those kids going into the service, their idealism puts American freedoms ahead of even their own lives.
My whole job is to stand in front of a classroom and talk smack (Sociology smack, but still). If I want to pick on our political leaders, I am free to do so. If I want to argue the mechanisms of free market economics (after tenure), I am free to do so. As long as it honestly speaks to the students, it is worthwhile.
There are 17 year olds out there who value that right of mine, that they are willing to put themselves on the line to protect it. These kids put their futures at stake for that freedom. I have nothing but the deepest respect for that. Thanks does not capture my debt to these fellow citizens.
That is why it is so important to me that we take these soldiers' commitment seriously enough to engage them only when absolutely necessary. And this respect is comlpetely seperate from the politics of oil.