NOW IT MAKES SENSE |
December 21, 2007
NOW IT MAKES SENSE
Name: Combat Doc
Posting date: 12/21/07
Returned from: Iraq
Milblog url: candle_in_the_dark.blogspot.com
Oh. So this is what they're talking about..."P" TSD. Now it makes sense.
I have days when I just laugh out loud at some of the near misses I survived in Iraq. RPGs, IEDs, small arms fire pinging off the ground at my feet. I remember the shrapnel that hit my chest when I was running to the tower after the RPG near-missed a Kiowa helicopter. I remember walking through pitch black fields during no-moon nights in Fallujah using only the green-filtered nightmare of what Vietnam vets called a Starlite scope to open the darkness the Hajj used to hide right beside us. I remember the raids when we'd bust through the smoke and fragments left by the water-impulse charge after blowing the door and entering the room that was usually empty; sometimes it wasn't.
But none of that keeps me up at night.
Jake's face followed by Alcantara, Gummersal, and Khan. Then the blast. John outside crying into the arms of a Platoon Sergeant doing the same. Knowing I wasn't there. Knowing that I had no hope of saving or even seeing his last smile before he called me a fag and went in. Not being there when Hector was shot because of a lazy Iraqi cop mistake and bad commo. Not being there when Strong's legs were blown out from under him as he stood in the hatch pulling security in a place where that phrase is an oxymoron.
Why do those of us who stayed behind, those of us with responsibilities outside the Army, those others who chose lives after Iraq, those of us who still wish to feel the need to be there when it happens yet knowing it could have been us. Why does THIS and not the near-death punctuated blur of combat affect us?
Worse, why do they understand. Why does no one pass judgment. Why does no one say, " You shitbag, you abandoned us."
Both sides have reasons and valid points, but what America doesn't understand when they choose a side is that we hold both opinions.
They don't pass judgment, they don't complain, they don't hate because they feel the same as I do, and they would feel the same as me if they were here with me.
So they know what I'm feeling without asking...and they'll never ask.