November 09, 2007
Name: Eric Coulson
Posting date: 11/9/07
Stationed in: Iraq
Milblog url: badgersforward.blogspot.com
"Why?" That is a question I have received frequently over the last couple of weeks. Why, when I could be at Fort Living Room, seated on Camp Couch, my command and duty safely behind me, two dogs, a cat, and a loving wife vying for my attention, did I choose to stay in Iraq?
The answer of course is complex and has a myriad of reasons both personal and professional. It was a mutual decision between Mrs. Badger 6 and myself. We took about a week to consider how it would affect us, and decided that the personal challenges it would afford also offered us personal opportunity.
Professionally I was simply not ready to call this done; I think I have something to contribute to the war effort and while there are things I could do from home, for a variety of reasons I became convinced that in fact I would not make the difference I hoped to. And thus I decided, when presented with the opportunity, to stay in Iraq.
Unfortunately most of the United States is not at war; her Armed Forces are, but it seems the rest of the country simply wants to move it off the evening news.
I get so tired of people saying "I would serve, but...", usually followed by some personal choice they have made that has nothing to do with an objective constraint on their ability to serve. I particularly love the "I have a family" excuse. So does most of the military. If you don't want to be in the military that's fine, I think the all volunteer service is preferable, I want to be with people who want to be here. Just be honest with yourself and the rest of us.
I receive personal satisfaction from serving my country. Values such as Duty, Honor, Country may not be the only reasons to serve, but they do resonate with me and with many of the people I serve with. So as we sacrifice by separation from our families we also know we are contributing to our national effort and our brothers and sisters in arms.