"If you’ve never hunted humans, if you’ve never been hunted, if you haven’t been shot at on a regular basis…."

The title is from the most powerful op-ed piece I have ever read about our troops who have been fighting in the mid-East. The author, George Masters, enlisted in the US Marine Corps in the 1960s to serve his country. He spent 18 months in Vietnam, much of that time as a frontline combat Marine.

The piece is here: Washington Post

I’m driving.

Jack, my co-pilot, sleeps in the passenger seat. His chin rests on my upper leg. The car in front of us wears two Support Our Troops ribbons. One is yellow; the other red, white and blue. Both are made in China. On the rear bumper is a faded black MIA sticker. That driver probably means well, but by now I’ve seen too many ribbons. While the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq kill and maim, I think of how they are also shaping the future of returning veterans. Many of these men and women will come home and go missing, and you won’t even know it. Returning from a war is more than getting off an airplane and putting on civvies. Combat changes a person. It changed me.

I’m driving angry.

I want to tell the guy in front of me: You want to support the troops? Get them the hell out of the line of fire. Or, if you think this war is so necessary, get over there yourself. If you’re too old, pull your kids or grandkids out of college and send them…

[Source: Washington Post.]

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Charles McCain

Charles McCain is a Washington DC based freelance journalist and novelist. He is the author of "An Honorable German," a World War Two naval epic. You can read more of his work on his website: http://charlesmccain.com/

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