Wednesday, January 26, 2011

“All told, 268 U.S. troops were killed by the improvised explosive devices, or IEDs, in 2010, about as many as in the three previous years combined, according to the figures, obtained by The Washington Post. More than 3,360 troops were injured, an increase of 178 percent over the year before.”

This is a staggering figure. My mind balks at the notion that its true. I have been living it and yet it still seems so wrong. I can not express to you in words what this looks like. The loss of human life is such an ugly thing. I have lived it and I have seen the face of the victim of that loss. I have seen the face of the victim who was not killed. Part of me holds a hatred for myself and for the medical community that allows some of the people to live. Yes, they are “alive” but will never know the joy of running barefoot through a grassy field. I weep at their loss. I cry for them. Some wont cry, they just have a solid face that says “I accept this”. Perhaps I have a harder time accepting it than they do.

On the other hand, I see the people that we are here to help. I see the face of the new Afghanistan. I despise them when they sit in their compound eat food paid for by US citizens and chant about the fall of America. These are the people that my Marines gave their feet for? These men who rape their own comrades? These men who burn the toes off their own children? This is what my Marines gave their legs for?

On the other hand, I see the face of those who have killed Marines. My heart is confused with what to make of these different strings of thought. What is wrong with the world when the bad guy who got shot is more grateful for the medical care than the Afghan man we are here to actually help?

No one ever came to war and had the profound realization that it all makes sense now. I guess that for the most part, people see this and ask “Why?”.

I ask why. I don’t have a good answer for myself. It makes no sense.



t. said...

If I had a choice between never running barefoot again or never having the chance to even go home, I would lose a leg. Or both. It's not fair, and there's no good answer to your question of "why?", but I'm glad you're there to help the ones you can. I see sons going home to mothers, daughters going home to fathers, spouses going home to their partners, and even if they go home broken, they go home to someone who may need them more than they need a limb. (not to say that it's easy, comprehensible, desirable, or good. But it has some hope.).

The Jack said...

I googled a phrase from Braveheart. The one his father says to him in a dream, "Your heart is free have the courage to follow it". Your blog came up and I read that passage. I then clicked to see some of your recent articles. It looks to me you've come a long way since 2008. Thanks for serving and fighting the good fight.