President Hahs statement of support for troops
BLE International President Don M. Hahs issued the following statement concerning the war in Iraq:
"As the war in Iraq develops, hundreds of thousands of brave men and women in uniform find themselves in harms way thousands of miles from their homes and loved ones. They deserve our respect, admiration and support.
"American prayers were answered on April 13 when the seven prisoners of war in Iraq were returned to the freedom of coalition forces. It was a very welcome sight to see them in good condition and out of harm's way.
"After the daring rescue of PFC Jessica Lynch, these seven prisoners were on the minds of millions of people all across the globe. We are hopeful that those service men and women listed as Missing In Action will soon be accounted for.
"On behalf of the entire membership of the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers, I extend a heartfelt 'welcome home' to the former prisoners of war and express our most sincere thank you for the service you have provided in defending freedom against hostile forces. Your strength and courage are to be admired by all who embrace freedom.
"Furthermore, I ask that all BLE members, regardless of whether they support or oppose the war, pray for our troops in Iraq and in other places around the world. They are making great sacrifices on our behalf and on behalf of freedom. We should not let those sacrifices go unnoticed.
"I am very proud of each and every man and woman in uniform today - protecting our country and our way of life. They have my full support and best wishes for a speedy return to their homes and loved ones."
© 2003 Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers