Stars and Stripes
This issue concerning military personnel both active and retired is about a newspaper.
Yes that’s correct. A newspaper. An item that many of us remember reading regardless if you were in England flying a mission, stuck in a foxhole in Germany or Korea , in the bush in Vietnam, serving in Bosnia and now being viewed by those who serve in the Middle East.
It is called ”The Stars and Stripes.” A newspaper which got it’s start as a newspaper during the civil war for Union troops. This newspaper has never taken a back seat to any other paper being published on a constant basis since 1942 in Europe and 1945 in the Pacific.
That is an achievement that many papers cannot claim.
Do you remember that newspaper reaching you in some far flung location and while it was perhaps a week old you were glad to have it to read?
In Korea in 1959 copies of the Stars and Stripes were maintained for months by many of us who had little reading material. This paper published primarily for all service members, is now always found now on a military base. It provides the military reader the opportunity to learn of new programs such as in the field of education, travel, health care and other areas.
Want to buy a vehicle or sell one? Want to now what to expect if you are on a PCS move to some far flung location? The Stars and Stripes has it covered and has been a paper which the military have depended on for years. However lets not forget one of the most important aspects of the classified section of Stars and Stripes in which civilian employers can advertise employment opportunities for those who are leaving military service. Such an employment opportunity has assisted many military families return to a normal life in our communities.
Stars and Stripes is the widest paper being distributed in the world today. They serve over 50 countries, wherever we have troops or a government presence. They have done an incredible job over the years and while many of us back here in ‘the world’ have no idea how much there efforts were appreciated. Many of our most outstanding television reporters and newsmen have served in the Stars and Stripes in the 1940’s and went on to a successful career. The late Andy Rooney of CBS was one which comes to mind.
However recently as reported in the New York Times the Stars and Stripes which originally was based in the National Press Building in Washington is being moved for cost savings measures to Ft. Meade, Md. This move has raised questions from the Stars and Stripes staff who suspect they could lose their journalistic freedom of what they report by the move. However due to the fact that Stars and Stripes operates with tax payer funding the end result could not favor the newspaper.
So to all the men and women who worked tirelessly to bring a little happiness to those of us in the field, a barracks, a jeep, a foxhole or for those of us who hurried up to’ sit and wait’ at an airfield, we say ‘Thank You’. Your efforts were and still are greatly appreciated.