A few years ago, some fools on the left thought we had come up with a fictional character when we wrote about Tom Cotton, a Harvard grad (undergraduate and law school) who resigned from a prestigious Washington law firm to join the Army after 9/11. Tom wrote to us from Iraq, where he was serving at the time, to share his less than complimentary thoughts about the New York Times. The Times had just disclosed a secret government program aimed at breaking up the financial infrastructure that was supporting terrorism, the kind Tom was combating on patrols in some of Baghdad’s most dangerous neighborhoods.
The loony left was convinced that Tom didn’t exist, at least not as we described him. To them, it was incomprehensible that an Ivy League educated lawyer would leave a high-paying job to risk his life for his country.
Now, these leftist fools are in for another shock. Earlier this year, Tom intended to transition from active duty into the reserves and move home to Arkansas to resume his law career. However, when he learned that the Infantry headquarters was seeking captains to deploy with provincial reconstruction teams in Afghanistan, he decided to withdraw his resignation and volunteer for this assignment. A provincial reconstruction team, according to Tom, is a joint-service, civil-military operation focusing on stability and security, governance and economic development, i.e., traditional counterinsurgency operations.
As Tom explains, “I had wanted to deploy again, but without a long delay, and this deployment is very rapid (by Army standards). Plus, I liked the idea of deploying to Afghanistan and seeing the other current theater. And I thought the greater responsibility and authority I would have in this deployment compared to my last deployment in Iraq would be rewarding.”
It has been my pleasure and privilege to get to know this great patriot during his time serving at Fort Myer here in the Washington, DC area. I cannot adequately express my admiration for Tom, so I’ll just wish him the best in Afghanistan.
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