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Saturday, March 06, 2010

Ghosts of war

Amazing essay in the NY Times, written by a soldier who served in Iraq. He says he is speaking out to honor the lives that he took there. Below is just the first 3 paragraphs.

February 22, 2010
Distant Wars, Constant Ghosts

SINCE the two recent NATO-led military strikes that accidentally killed dozens of Afghan civilians, I have been thinking a great deal about the psychic toll that killing takes on soldiers.

In 2007, I was an Army lieutenant leading a group on a house-clearing mission in Baquba, Iraq, when I called in an artillery strike on a house. The strike destroyed the house and killed everyone inside. I thought we had struck enemy fighters, but I was wrong. A father, mother and their children had been huddled inside.

The feelings of disbelief that initially filled me quickly transformed into feelings of rage and self-loathing. The following weeks, months and years would prove that my life was forever changed.


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