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  • Writer's pictureMichael Padilla-Pagan Pay

In the United States, May 27th is Memorial day.

As a former soldier, I feel compelled to talk about the soldiers commitment to protect the lives of his fellow citizens from all countries and nations.

A soldier does not fight to die. Although we know it can happen, we love life as much as any other - perhaps more, dare we say. We committed our lives to that of others. The meaning of the soldier's commitment is to protect the lives of his fellow citizens, his brothers in arms and those for whom he is asked to fight. Many soldiers have demonstrated this with an unwavering commitment, even as far as losing their own lives. This brother, this father, this son showed that their determination to achieve a goal set and accepted by them was flawless. This is possible only because this commitment made sense. This story and history of all of those who paid the ultimate price is worth the lesson.

The Anglo-Saxons forged a concept called "Mission Command". Command is not only by objective, it is done primarily for the purpose of the mission. This principle is applied by not only the US special forces, but by all special forces groups of all countries. It is what allows operators to adapt in action and to decide, in their soul and conscience, how they will achieve this goal according to the evolution of the situation. And how could it be otherwise? Those in contact with the field are best able to make decisions that are adapted to the environment. This is in line with the basic military principle of subsidiarity (a hierarchical level can only fulfill tasks that can not be performed at the subordinate level). We rarely risk death in a work carried out in a company, but for my company and others in my field that is also not true, we are in the business of protecting those under our care. What I ask, is that everyone self reflects about those we lost and the value of what our men and woman who wore the uniform bring to us, or who are serving currently, or who are protecting others even in the civilian world.  

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