Best Defense

Thomas E. Ricks' daily take on national security.

To the bone

Speaking of Vietnam, I remember a friend telling me that the coldest he’d ever been was one rainy night as a soldier in the Vietnamese highlands during the war there. I thought of that when I saw a fundraising appeal from some retired Special Forces soldiers for students in the mountains of Thailand. (At the ...

589569_090113_Vietnam_Mtns_1.13_resized2.jpg
589569_090113_Vietnam_Mtns_1.13_resized2.jpg

Speaking of Vietnam, I remember a friend telling me that the coldest he'd ever been was one rainy night as a soldier in the Vietnamese highlands during the war there. I thought of that when I saw a fundraising appeal from some retired Special Forces soldiers for students in the mountains of Thailand. (At the hyperlinked site, click on "Operation Warm Blanket.") After one child died of cold three years ago, the retiree group started buying them blankets. They also provide good students from remote areas with bicycles to get to school. It is not often that a mere $5 can make a real improvement in the quality of someone's life. So if you take a sandwich to work tomorrow, and send in the lunch money you would have spent, you will make a difference in the lives of two kids.

HOANG DINH NAM/Getty Images

Speaking of Vietnam, I remember a friend telling me that the coldest he’d ever been was one rainy night as a soldier in the Vietnamese highlands during the war there. I thought of that when I saw a fundraising appeal from some retired Special Forces soldiers for students in the mountains of Thailand. (At the hyperlinked site, click on “Operation Warm Blanket.”) After one child died of cold three years ago, the retiree group started buying them blankets. They also provide good students from remote areas with bicycles to get to school. It is not often that a mere $5 can make a real improvement in the quality of someone’s life. So if you take a sandwich to work tomorrow, and send in the lunch money you would have spent, you will make a difference in the lives of two kids.

HOANG DINH NAM/Getty Images

Thomas E. Ricks covered the U.S. military from 1991 to 2008 for the Wall Street Journal and then the Washington Post. He can be reached at ricksblogcomment@gmail.com. Twitter: @tomricks1

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