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SOME ADVICE TO RETURNING 2003 IRAQ WAR VETERANS  THESOCI-@aol.com
 Apr 21, 2003 17:28 PDT 

          SOME ADVICE TO RETURNING 2003 IRAQ WAR VETERANS

                               by
                        James Roger Brown
                      thesoci-@aol.com

DEALING WITH THE LIES
You are personally going to be dealing with the consequences of lies
told directly to you by the Military to justify what you were ordered to
do and lies told about the Iraq War by the United States Government. It
is important for you to understand this, because any "help" offered to
you as a Veteran will be designed to maintain these lies and/or delay
disclosure of the truth until after you are dead.

If you want help, you are going to have to take responsibility yourself
for identifying and finding the physical, mental and spiritual resource
you will need to try and recover. Take some time by yourself to reflect
on how you have been changed and what your particular damages are. You
will need help in all three areas because killing another human being in
peace or war is a physical, mental and spiritual act that has physical,
mental and spiritual consequences.

At best, the Military Hospital or Veterans Administration Hospital will
provide you with access to resources with the POTENTIAL to help you with
the physical and mental problems. Whether you actually get help, will
depend heavily on whom your case is assigned to. It will also depend on
priority driven resource allocation. The Veterans Hospital I go to for
medical problems is responsible for the care of 400,000 veterans. Upon
your return, you will be added to the waiting list for your area. I have
waited on lists for diagnostic medical tests over a year long. Expedited
diagnostic testing lists can be one to three months long. Some Veterans
die waiting for diagnostic medical testing.

As for spiritual help, you will be completely on your own. To frame what
the spiritual consequences are, combat Veterans who have had near death
experiences recount reliving their killing and feeling everything the
person they killed felt. Short of having a near death experience, you
will feel a discomfort inside you that nothing can alleviate. When you
leave the doctor’s office and the psychiatrists office with the feeling
that nothing they have done has helped you, the discomfort is probably
the spiritual consequence these people do no even admit exists, let
alone have any tools to deal with. It most definitely is not covered in
Basic Training. The best recommendation I can probably give on this is
to pray for guidance to the knowledge and resources you need for your
particular situation. You will be dealing with the internal connection
you have with God, so that is probably the best place to ask for
guidance. If you want to know what the alternative is, go to a VA
Emergency Room and listen to the drug overdose and failed suicide cases
who come in weekend nights.

IF RAPED, BLAME THE RAPIST
Be careful about getting into the unhealthy state of developing an
emotional attachment to the War to justify what you did after being
ordered into combat. Self-deception can only be sustained at great
price. In some corner of your mind you know you are lying to yourself.
Trying to hold on to a lie in that way is the mental and spiritual
equivalent of self-inflicted brain cancer. Competent Command and
Generalship will not squander you as a resource and will not place you
in situations that have no outcomes that advance the campaign toward
strategic and tactical goals that are ONLY in the national interest.

All the United States military failures from the Vietnam War to the
blunders in the second Iraq war have been failures of Command and
Generalship. Some of the adverse consequences are the result of pure
corruption at the top. You are not to blame for the consequences of
incompetent and corrupt Generalship, as long as you did not add your own
fear, malice and hatred on top of it in the acts committed following
orders. It is unwise to embrace and defend someone else’s evil as your
own for false emotional security. In trying to deal with the pain of
inevitable nightmares, sort out what evils, if any, are yours and what
evils belong to the Chain of Command. It can be liberating.

Some understanding of the consequences of command failure to use the
correct strategy and tactics necessary to achieve victory can be gleaned
from the books of Col. Harry G. Summers, Ret., ON STRATEGY (Vietnam War)
and ON STRATEGY II: A CRITICAL ANALYSIS OF THE GULF WAR (Gulf War I). As
demonstrated irrefutably in Vietnam, superiority on the battlefield does
not ensure victory in war. It is possible to win all the individual
battles with superior fire power and technology and in the end achieve
nothing, to the lifelong detriment of every surviving soldier who
participated.

Whether or not you ever determine in your own mind if the orders you
were given constitute a rape of your remaining life, do not hate those
who perceive that your life was raped and publicly protest it through
opposition to the War or its aftermath. Those who have their facts
together may be right.

There is one subgroup to ignore. For some reason, in every human
endeavor jackasses and bottom-feeders emerge sooner or later. Some
antiwar and so-called peace activists will intentionally rub salt in the
wounds your life has sustained to feed their own sick emotional
perversions at every individual opportunity. After the Vietnam War, they
were the ones who spat on individual soldiers and called them “baby
killers.” Those who do not treat you with the respect a normal human
being would extend to anyone who has suffered a great trauma at the
hands of unscrupulous people (in this case Command and Elected Officials
in Washington) deserve whatever contempt they earn. Opposing war, in
general or specific, is one thing, using opposition to war as an excuse
to humiliate, insult or threaten an individual soldier, in or out of
uniform, is something else.

© Copyright by James Roger Brown, April 21, 2003. All rights reserved.
	
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