I close with home movies -- of a sort.

U.S. Air Force Maj. Dann Carlson of the Thunderbirds flying team -- in town for a show this weekend at Andrews Air Force Base -- kindly took me for a spin Friday in his F-16.

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But machines aren't our most important military asset. People are. The Thunderbirds -- like every other serviceman and woman I've encountered lately -- were stand-up guys, who treated my family like royalty, our crew with respect, and their profession with utter reverence.

They're a credit to the Air Force (search-- and to this amazing country.

Thanks, guys.