Monday, September 03, 2012

These are the people

There was a terrorist attack against Americans in Peshawar, Pakistan today.

According to the most current reports, suicide bombers drove a car laden with explosives into a consulate vehicle. Two Americans and two local employees were injured.

You can read more about it here.

There are lots of people who think life in the Foreign Service is glamorous...and easy. This is one of the reasons why the American public is so willing to freeze our salaries for years and cut our pay when we go overseas. Because we have it so good.

Yes, there are great parts to being in the Foreign Service. I love my job, and I love serving my country.

But there are parts of it that are hard.

Like living in places where your health is compromised by the local conditions and local healthcare (or lack thereof).

Like having to spend your career away from your family, missing birthdays, weddings and funerals.

And like being a target.

I am lucky. I am in a safe place.

But I have been in dangerous places. And clearly, I have colleagues who are in even more dangerous places. Places I will likely serve in before my career is over.

So when you say your prayers tonight, say a few for those who are risking their lives to serve you. And when you hear someone talking about useless government employees and overpaid bureaucrats, remind them that the people who were injured today are the people they are talking about. That it takes both military and diplomatic power to advance our interests in the world, and that diplomats too sometimes pay the ultimate price for our country.


meredith said...

As always - simply and beautifully put. Thank you.

Carla Runs The World said...

I didn't comment but I linked to you on my post, and my friend who is in DS (and the one waiting for her visa to get to Pakistan) emailed me to thank for appreciating her service. She liked what you wrote as well.

Now if only the right audience were to read our posts...