Fifteen years of war have turned Iraqi cities such as Ramadi, Fallujah, and Mosul into ruins. Iraq remains as divided as ever along sectarian lines, despite the deaths of more than 4,500 U.S. troops and untold numbers of Iraqis.
The narrative myths of the Greatest Generation are so fixed in the American psyche that it can take a supreme cognitive effort to remember they were once angry young men who both feared and resented home.
On Sept. 29, 1899, a group of 13 veterans gathered together and decided there was a cause to which they personally related and collectively wanted to advocate for. Instead of just screaming on the street corner, they banded together and formed an organization now known as the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States, or the VFW.