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I met one of our troops yesterday

I met one of our troops yesterday

a letter from a veteran
Coalition For Free Thought In Media
12.Oct.2005 11:00:03 PST

Dear Jay,

I've met a few of them now. This kid was in his dress greens, looking really sharp. When he started talking he talked way too fast and his sentences were delivered in a jerky, spastic manner. I could tell right away he was suffering from PTSD, but there was more. The scarring on his cheek looked like a shrapnel wound, and as he spoke he was constantly scanning the crowd with is head. but his eyes would roll up into their sockets and his chin would tuck down and to the right every few seconds like an elaborate version of a twitch. During his wandering diatribe he mentioned the scar was caused by a grenade, and the rest of the picture focussed.

This kid, no more than 20, had been on patrol, somewhere in Iraq, and gotten hit by shrapnel from a grenade in his left cheek and jaw. The concussion of the grenade going off so close to him caused a kind of brain injury which is becoming common among soldiers injured in combat. Because more and more of our kids are surviving wounds that used to kill them, the secondary effects they suffer are becoming more visible. It's a kind of brain damage which takes years to heal, if it ever does.

This young man - I ought to stop calling him a kid, the only thing kid about this battle scarred veteran is his age - gave his youth, his face and his brain function for his country, or so he may believe. What a travesty that his scarifice should have been given to a lie! More and more evidence is being added to the pile which will eventually bury GWB and his cronies. The shame of it is, the punishment can never be harsh enough to fit the crime.

Vietnam Veteran, 1st Marines 67-70


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