October 11, 2006
Posting date: 10/11/06
Stationed in: Afghanistan
Milblog url: armysailor.com
While I was home on leave recently, all the talk on every news channel was about the 10-year-old murder case of a little girl, hardly any mention of the war at all. When there is mention of the war, it's almost always of Iraq. Many people seem to have forgotten about Afghanistan altogether. Many of us over here feel like the forgotten bastard step-children of war. We get the leftover equipment, and very little recognition.
Now don't get me wrong, we don't do what we do for the recognition. I recently got into a bit of a tiff with one of my officers over here. I was expressing the fact that I don't really agree with most of what we are doing here, and I definitely don't agree with our methodology. In my opinion it's wasteful, and not very productive. Basically, like all things run by the government, I feel this operation is being run poorly at best. So he asked me why I was over here then. I think I surprised him with my answer.
I am not here because I have to be. I am not here because of orders or a contractual obligation or anything of the sort. I am here to support my comrades-in-arms. I am here to support the man next to me. I am here to help relieve the burden of a soldier. I am here so that a man with a wife and kids can spend a little more time at home with his family. Few others seem to understand that.
What I don't understand is why so many Americans are so apathetic about this whole situation. I really feel like most people look at this war as little more than a television event. How many people have ever taken the time to stop and think about what we go through every day over here? The bullets, rockets and IEDs are not the hard part. The hard part is knowing that life goes on back at home.
(By the way, I am a U.S. Navy Sailor serving with a U.S. Army Special Operations Unit. Some people are not aware that the Navy is contributing a large portion of the effort on the ground, and that we march into combat, side-by-side with our Army brethren.)