I was having a formal conversation today with a fellow officer when he was
recently injected into a high tempo billet out of his normal command and on
short notice, yes our unit. He hadn't been to a deployment yet but that
doesn't matter to us. He is young, he is knowledgeable, he will do great
I quickly diverted the conversation to lighten him up a bit to one of me
looking at him and saying, funny, the American people have no idea what we
really do and/or sacrifices. Yes, they know we volunteered etc etc. But keep
in mind the amount of birthdays, Christmas mornings, anniversaries, first
borns we miss. It's a bit more than a volunteer force.
My fellow warrior quickly realized what exactly he got into and agreed; yes
the American people don't really have the concept of burning human poop,
wearing the same clothes for a month, living in total scum on their minds.
We are Americans. We have the best accommodations on this planet. Running
water, heat, A/C parasite free meat to eat etc. I think those simple
things, no, I know those simple things are often taken for granted ..until
you don't have them anymore.
Do you like to go camping ( I already hear those saying ewe, no, bugs, yuk).
Sweetheart, bugs are the last of your concerns over in some war torn
country. The parasitical things that like to eat you from the inside out,
the hazards of poisonous critters and let alone the fact that someone is
trying to kill you kinda put a different perspective on "camping" in a
foreign country. If you don't like camping, you probably won't ever really
even begin to understand the torments your service members go through. Hell
some of you can't even go poop outside your palace crapper in your home. I
went into a port-a- john the other day, hell it was the cleanest crapper
I've ever seen. I was trying to figure out how we could take it with
us…but I digress.
I think Toby Keith summed it up by saying "I can't call in sick on Mondays
when the weekend's been too strong, I just work straight through the
And sometimes all night long." Do this; plan a nice cruise for next year.
Save up for it, pinch your pennies, buy the airline tickets, schedule a
house sitter and all the other shit for it and two days before it is suppose
to go down, have your boss tell you, nope you need to get on this here plane
and go to this crap hole and help these people out. By the way do it with a
smile on your face will ya! Take your shittiest day, multiply it by 10 then
add in the factor that you can't see any of your family for let's say 7
months. When you get to "your shittiest day" part, remember you get to go
home and see your family and most of the times; no one is trying to kill
I love my job, I really do. No where can you find the camaraderie, and build
lifelong friendships with true warriors like these. The greater populace
will never know about most of their actions (F'ing crime by the way). These
are the kind of guys you would gladly take a bullet for. Live in hell, fight
bad guys and win hearts and minds. But to all that is holy, I wish there
was a way to show the American people what their servicemembers are no shit
made of. The morals, the tough mental and physical characters and the
willingness to do it in the most god forsaken places. Ya, it's a bit more
than a volunteer force.