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Support the Troops? A Community in Dialogue
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The vigorous national controversy surrounding Steven Salaita's article, "No, thanks: Stop saying 'support the troops' " in Salon.com (Aug 25, 2013: http://www.salon.com/2013/08/25/no_thanks_i_wont_support_the_troops/) raised questions about the connections Americans feel between military personnel and the policies they are called upon to carry out. Beneath the questions lie a disjunction in American society: a very small percentage of Americans have served in the military, and a very large majority have neither personal military experience nor even personal acquaintance with veterans. In this panel, the Rev. Gil Ott, a combat veteran of the Vietnam War, and Col John Montgomery, the commander of the Air Force ROTC detachment at Virginia Tech, engage Professor Salaita and the audience about how Americans ought to think about military personnel and veterans.