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Pays homage and respect
March 31, 2009 - Jim Smith
After an 18-year ban, beginning Monday the media again will be able to photograph American war dead's flag-draped caskets returning to American soil.
Robert Gates, secretary of defense under former President Bush and President Obama, approved the policy shift last week and issued a memo outlining the conditions under which the photography can take place.
Obama had asked for a review of the policy that banned showing returning war dead's arrival in the U.S. Gates earlier said he was troubled by the former policy.
Under the new policy, members of the family of the deceased military personnel have the final say on whether photos can be taken of the war dead's arrival at Dover Air Force Base in Delaware.
I agree with the new policy for two reasons.
First, it pays homage and final respects to the troops who have given their lives in the name of our country.
Second, it is a powerful visual reminder to the American people that men and women in the military are continuing to die and are being seriously wounded in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The wars in those two countries continue, and we need to remember it and those there in our name.
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