Texas Army ROTC
Texas Army ROTC

MS IV Cadets Attend Vets for Freedom Rally

Mon, March 24, 2008

There, they were greeted by local, state, and national political officials, reporters and news cameras, blue and gold star families, and several young veterans of OIF and OEF. They were all there for the Austin leg of the Vets for Freedom National Heroes Tour.

Cadets listened to Knox Nunnally and David Bellavia, the founders of Vets for Freedom, speak about what the organization has done and what soldiers are doing in the fight and back home. According to their website, http://www.vetsforfreedom.org/ , their mission is "to educate the American public about the importance of achieving success in these conflicts by applying first-hand knowledge to issues of American strategy and tactics in Iraq."

The cadets had an opportunity to speak individually with one of the co-founders, David Bellavia, who served as a Squad Leader in Iraq. He stressed that he, as a Non-Commissioned Officer, was empowered by the officers in his chain-of-command.

If the Platoon Leader did not respect his own officer rank, and did not demand that respect from others, then it affected how people reacted to him as a Squad Leader. He also taught the MS IVs a valuable lesson about how they should always know the positions two levels up due to the unpredictability of the fight. All cadets will receive a signed copy of his recent book, House to House.

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