Rachel Maddow highlights an effort by Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America to establish a national day of action to celebrate returning Iraq War veterans.
Will there be a parade down New York City's Broadway for returning war veterans? Not quite yet, says the Pentagon, even though the idea is gathering steam.
Thousands cheered the Super Bowl champion New York Giants as they made their way down New York City’s midtown thoroughfare on Tuesday in a massive celebration many veterans groups say should be afforded to U.S. troops returning from Iraq.
Even though military leaders say they support a parade for returning troops, they say now is not the appropriate time given that fighting is still going on in Afghanistan.
A ticker–tape parade, Col. Dave Lapan, spokesman for the Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey, “wouldn’t harm our efforts in Afghanistan, but we feel it would be inappropriate at this time given ongoing deployments and combat operations there.” Lapan said. He was quoted in both the The New York Times and Stars & Stripes.
Instead, a gala for returning Iraq veterans is planned at the White House.
Since American military involvement ended in Iraq in December, there has been increasing public debate about the lack of fanfare over the return of veterans of the Iraq war. Rather than national celebrations, individual cities and citizens have stepped up their efforts to honor troops.
Organizers of a St. Louis parade, which drew an estimated 100,000 observers and 20,000 participants on Jan. 28, said people attended from Chicago, Denver, Philadelphia, San Antonio, Oklahoma City, Seattle, Tucson, Ariz., Nashville, Tenn., Greensboro, N.C., and Clinton, Iowa.
President Obama unveiled a new plan to get post September 11 veterans back to work. NBC's Kristen Welker reports.
In New York, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn has called for a celebration there focusing on veterans of the Iraq war.
"While military operations in Afghanistan and elsewhere have not concluded, the fact remains that our military has made commendable achievements in Iraq," Quinn told NBC News last week.
Still, no decision has been made yet on such a celebration. New York instead is working with the White House and the Pentagon on the best way to honor troops, Stu Loeser, a spokesman for New York City Michael Bloomberg, told the New York Times.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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