77 votes

5 years since I felt compelled to share my story here on the Daily Paul.

Wow time flies! A little over 5 years ago my then wife sat me down to watch a Ron Paul video, and I couldn't just tune out what I had heard and seen and continue the life path I was on then. I was in the Army Reserves at the time and I wanted out, and I was looking for a way to do that. After putting my thoughts to paper after watching that video I was uncertain of how I would be able to share my story, until I found this wonderful site, the Daily Paul. My initial sharing of my story didn't get read much, but I was encouraged by all who replied and took the advice I had been given by several to make my own video, and I had a "yeah, why didn't I think of that" moment...the rest is history..the video ensured the end of my military career and I owe a huge thanks to the Daily Paul community and the support you gave me then during very uncertain times for me. So thank you! I still owe a number of you here a hug and a beer!

If you didn't read it then, here it is -

"A Soldier's Personal Revolution

I joined the Army in the early months of 2001; my patriotism led me to the recruiter’s office. I had grown up in awe of my grandfathers and their stories of World War II, and their reminiscing became my dreams. When I got to basic training I did not talk about missing home like the other recruits around me, I felt at home in ways I never had before.

The weeks after 9/11 found me in Kosovo, part of C co 3/7 Infantry, 3rd Infantry Division, patrolling the border with Macedonia as part of our duties. We had ammunition to defend ourselves with and the authority to apprehend anyone crossing the border illegally. I will get back to why these details are important later.

Fast forward to 2003, I am rolling across the desert in the back of a Bradley fighting vehicle, part of the spearhead into Iraq. Other than those first three weeks of “Shock and Awe” what I remember most about Iraq was the people. Crowds of kids wanting to know about Michael Jackson and Britney Spears, open-minded adults wanted to know about our social freedoms, and ninety some percent of Iraqis just wanted to raise their families in peace and did not hesitate to tell us. I really fell in love with the Iraqi people. My platoon and I played soccer with some of those crowds of kids, we had dinner and shared food with families in their homes, we even went to a few house parties, and my lieutenant and I spent one very memorable afternoon swimming in an irrigation ditch with five young women. It is all of them I think of when anyone tells me we need to turn the Middle East into a sheet of glass or that all Muslims are our enemies.

I remember thinking on this briefly when I was there, but more so since I’ve returned, usually when I’m day dreaming behind the wheel of my van, but what we were doing when we were doing our jobs, patrolling the streets, conducting road blocks vehicle searches, bodily searching individuals, and searching houses, couldn’t be helping our long range plans for winning hearts and minds. I really have to wonder, how long would it take me to move from a position of thanks for my despotic government being removed to feeling like I lived in a conquered and occupied country if I saw foreign troops on the streets of my hometown Tallahassee everyday? Add to this our having bases and troops in Turkey, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Qatar, Bahrain, Kuwait, Egypt, Oman, the United Arab Emirates, Morocco, Tunisia, Algeria, and Saudi Arabia, ( I may have missed a few, we have approximately 700 bases in 130 countries ) some of them for decades, our Navy of their coast, our fighter jets in their sky’s , the CIA in business with monarchs, dictators and thugs, and our State Department treating their leaders like irresponsible children, it’s no wonder moderate Muslims takes to the streets shouting “ Death to America” and a minority takes action against us. I would expect we would be doing the same thing if say, China had bases on our soil, and her Navy patrolled our coastline and Chinese fighter jets streaked across our sky. In short, this is all hard to admit, but our actions do have consequences.

Fast forward again to the present day, I am out of active duty, and in the Army Reserves. (I wanted to stay active duty, but my wife said I would be single, so we had a compromise.)To be honest the reserves has bored me to tears and I haven’t felt like I’m giving anything back to my country, so I looked into getting attached to a National Guard unit on our border with Mexico for a tour or two. However, when I learned they don’t have the authority to apprehend illegal border crossers and can only call up our overworked and overstretched border patrol when they spot illegal activity, I got myself in trouble again by thinking - about what I had done in Kosovo and about what I knew our military had done to our own people in the aftermath of hurricane Katrina ( disarmed law abiding civilians only trying to protect themselves when the police had failed to do so) . To add insult to injury, our Guardsmen and women on our own border don’t have ammunition and have on several documented occasions actually had to retreat when facing fire from Mexican paramilitary groups. Now why would I want to sign up for that? To be witness to the violation of America’s sovereignty? No one in the Executive branch of our government is doing anything about it, and it makes me wonder why I am even in the Army at all.

Why are we the worlds policeman when our own country is being openly violated? Why are we borrowing money hand over fist from nations not exactly our friends, just to spend it on our out of control foreign policy? I am starting to feel like the powers that be do not have America’s interests in mind at all. It’s starting to feel like our ruin is their objective. From our factories closing and moving overseas, to the plunging value of our dollar, America is crumbling. Yet I love her far to much to watch her fall apart.
This is why I am taking my personal revolution and joining forces with Dr. Ron Paul’s revolution. His “bring all the troops home” non-intervention foreign policy and plans to put America first again are just what we need at this time in our history. I don’t expect you to agree with everything he says, but I do hope we can all put our differences aside and join him in seeing that ALL the troops come home, the Republic is restored and America saved. Thank you and God Bless."

I'm a much happier person today than I was before watching that video and since I decided to share my story, and the journey between then and now has been amazing. I can't wait to see what the next 5 years brings for me and for all of us. Good things I believe!

In Liberty, Zak Carter
206-501-9221
http://freeandequal.org




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Glad you made it home, thanks for fighting for truth.

My cousin's son never made it back. It still pisses me off.
Thanks for sharing your story.

This is the article that got my posting privileges revoked:
http://bklim.newsvine.com/_news/2013/05/12/18212165-dr-stan-...

Thanks for all you do to advance freedom.

I joined the Army in the early 80s. I thought it was the right thing to do, as the nation was suffering from the after-effects of Vietnam and there was a real threat in Europe. I retired a few years ago, in part because of how our armed forces were being used excessively and without justification in so many places.

I would never encourage anyone to join the U.S. military today.

Your work at freeandequal is greatly appreciated. Thank you.

Magna est veritas, et prevalebit. Truth is most powerful, and will ultimately prevail.

Boss

Keep on truckin, Zak. Your excellence knows no bounds.

Wow

I am not American but I really appreciate what your doing Zak.

Freedom is a byproduct of acceptance - judge not.

Curious

Since you're not an American, what drew you to Ron Paul (how did you hear about him?) and the Daily Paul?

When the American spirit was in its youth, the language of America was different: Liberty, sir, was the primary object. - Patrick Henry

Well...

everything in the arenas of liberty are connected at some level. You might start out with health, or the economy, or human rights etc, but if you pursue any of them with an honest inquiry, they will all eventually lead to the corruption that is present within our power systems.

I am not sure exactly what got me on to RP, but it would have been due to my interest in justice, health and harmony. Once I found out about him though, one whiff was enough for me to know that he is a hero for these things ( albeit indirectly for health and harmony ). I've been following him for about 6 years now.

Freedom is a byproduct of acceptance - judge not.

Ill pat your

back as hard as you are!

Thanks!;p

It was my Daily Paul bday, I like it way more than my other one! Because 5 sounds way better than 40!:)

Support Liberty Media! http://benswann.com/

I believe we won't turn things around in this country until we first change the media and the culture - please donate to a liberty media creator today! http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/truth-in-media-project

ytc's picture

ZakC, your youtube declaration of independence from the military

was one of the very first of such personal testimonies. It was breathtaking and mind-boggling to us, in our household. We never knew there were so many of us, willing to *openly* take RonPaulian stand on foreign & economic policies. (yup, those were the fearful subdued days ;-) You encouraged and helped organize many others to follow you and inspired artists & musicians to perform for liberty on many occasions. Then came the debates among third party candidates, giving them the opportunity to express themselves *openly*.

Thanks to YOUR resilient indomitable activism, you & your group of friends helped RP r3VOLution develop its daring grit & colorful festive flares. It became much more than just a dry academic policy platform for libertarian-leaning republicans.

It really has been an amazing RonPaulian half a decade. Good luck to you, and all of us, for multiplying and magnifying this quest for LIBERTY for all! Now that we found the sweetness of liberty to speak up, we will not be silenced, again. . . hoping for our turn for an American Spring!

Thanks for all the

Very kind words ytc! I had a very wonderful Daily Paul bday!:) And call anytime, it's always good to talk to fellow Daily Paulers!

Support Liberty Media! http://benswann.com/

I believe we won't turn things around in this country until we first change the media and the culture - please donate to a liberty media creator today! http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/truth-in-media-project

Somehow

Maybe it's my 5 years here, but I feel you've left out a HUGE chucnk of your story that is very important and pertinant to DPd. and that is your activism.. which, while you and I do not agree on somethings, I di admire and respect your activism very much.

Please tell that story.

Love, BBG

Thanks Granger!

The respect goes both ways;)

The missing huge chunks of my life story is going to be out in a book - hopefully next year!

Support Liberty Media! http://benswann.com/

I believe we won't turn things around in this country until we first change the media and the culture - please donate to a liberty media creator today! http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/truth-in-media-project

STARTING to believe that Washington DC does not have our....

...nation's interests at heart?

LOL

Let's say the United States were, in fact, occupied by a foreign occupational military power who centered their operations in Washington DC - just for the sake of argument.

Would they operate much differently than those in Washington DC operate today?

I wrote this in December 2007...

Cut me a little slack?:)

Support Liberty Media! http://benswann.com/

I believe we won't turn things around in this country until we first change the media and the culture - please donate to a liberty media creator today! http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/truth-in-media-project

Smedley Butler lives!

That's a bright torch you've got there, soldier. Excellent choice of weapons.

This is the article that got my posting privileges revoked:
http://bklim.newsvine.com/_news/2013/05/12/18212165-dr-stan-...

Thanks Zak

I too am about five years deep into this and remember you from about the time we got to help Ron Paul run. Maybe it would be a good time for you to run for local office and get out of the military. That would be my suggestion, you could do better on the inside then on the cannon fodder side. We need people like you alive. Please consider running for office, and thank you for sharing your story. God bless, Semper Fidelis.

Those who expect to reap the blessings of freedom must. like men, undergo the fatigue of supporting it.-Thomas Paine

The R3volution requires action, not observation!!!!

And thank you Tog!

I got kicked out of the Army Reserves in early 2008 when I put this writing to video...I'm VERY happy where I am now working with freeandequal.org as their communications director. I helped get Larry King to moderate the "open" debate they hosted on October 23rd and I helped bring a lot of the cameras there that covered it - I've also crafted a 5 point plan to make that debate look small in comparison to what we produce in 2016...I could see myself running for something small in 2018, but I really prefer promoting others (like the very amazing Christina Tobin and Josh Tolley)....lot's of time to think about it between now and then:)

Support Liberty Media! http://benswann.com/

I believe we won't turn things around in this country until we first change the media and the culture - please donate to a liberty media creator today! http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/truth-in-media-project

thanks

for sharing your story, and for working with freeandequal.org. I find that organization to be one of the most important out there when it comes to expanding our choices for elections.

thanks for sharing

My moment was when I saw it live on television when Ron took on Rudy. Must have squirted whiskey through my nose when I witnessed it. I googled Ron Paul and have been a supporter ever since.

I come from a long line of military. Ron Paul reminds my of. my own grandfather. Staunch patriot.

'Peace is a powerful message.' Ron Paul

Thank you for serving!!!

Thank you for serving!!!

Thanks

Were any people ever shot/ executed for attempting to cross the border in Kosovo/Macedonia?

donvino

We detained people, and we confiscated weapons

And contraband, but no one in my unit shot anyone there.

Support Liberty Media! http://benswann.com/

I believe we won't turn things around in this country until we first change the media and the culture - please donate to a liberty media creator today! http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/truth-in-media-project

Their Objective

That is the question I ask myself every day. What do they know that we do not?
We will find out the hard way. Wake up America!!

dave anderson

Spot on!

Bump!

What would the Founders do?

Awesome Read...

...thanks so much for sharing.

We need to get an early start on 2016: Support Rand PAC 2016

www.randpac2016.com

https://twitter.com/randpac2016

Eloquent, from the heart.

This is what will wake up a lot of people like my mom. I'm going to print it and show it to her.

Thanks for sharing!

LivingTheDream

It's important that people who

have seen things first hand speak out. Thank you for doing that. I'm glad that things have been working out for you. May God bless you and your family.

When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the Universe.
~ John Muir

please post a link to the video

:D

drop me an email at

drop me an email at davidmackenzie65 at yahoo

it's about Phil and his quartz...

The original was pulled...

Here's a copy though... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=osWmKRHgj-M

Support Liberty Media! http://benswann.com/

I believe we won't turn things around in this country until we first change the media and the culture - please donate to a liberty media creator today! http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/truth-in-media-project