I originally posted this eight years ago, but it bears repeating again.
The citizens of the United States have a different relationship with the Military than many countries do. The Military is seen as being part of the citizenry (and actually vice versa, as a reading of the Second Amendment will show). In many countries the military is seen as separate and distinct from the populace.
This isn't unique - the same dynamic has long been in play certainly in the Anglosphere, and other nations as well (c.f. Switzerland). This has resulted in the Military being seen as high status, and commanding broad respect through society.
It's the soldier, not the reporter who has given us
Freedom of the Press.
It's the soldier, not the poet, who has given us
Freedom of Speech.
It's the soldier, not the campus organizer, who has given us the
Freedom to Demonstrate.
It's the soldier, not the lawyer, who has given us the
Right to a Fair Trial.
It's the soldier who salutes the flag, serves under the flag and
whose coffin is draped by the flag,
Who gives the protestor the right to burn the flag.- Father Dennis O'Brien, USMC
And so in the United States, today is the celebration of Veteran's Day. The rest of the Anglosphere (and other places) hold today as Remembrance Day or Armistice Day, recalling the Millions slaughtered in the Great War which ended 95 years ago today. America does not need a Remembrance Day, as we have our own Memorial Day holiday (an outgrowth of the American War of Southern Independence a half century earlier than the War To End All Wars).
As a result, there's less sadness here. On these shores, today is a day for the living, not for the dead. We see signs at small restaurants saying "Veterans Eat Free", which would be difficult for those asleep in Flanders' Fields.
But even here it's worth a moment's reflection on the War where Europe committed suicide, when a whole generation was butchered and damned. And how they nearly took us with her, then and 20 years later. It's rarely the politicians who caused the problem who bleed.
Thanks to all who served, including Grandpa, Dad, Uncle Dick, nephew Daniel, The Queen Of The World's son, our Son-In-Law (now back from deployment), and last but by no means least our very own ASM826. The citizens - of whom you were once part and to which you returned - are grateful indeed that this nation does not fear its own Armed Forces.