Thursday, January 8, 2015

Article - "Why Soldiers Miss War"

Participating in a war has a great effect on people and some have trouble recovering. Many suffer from varying degrees of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) while others just miss the experience and adventure of the war. Some PTSD experts say many experience a combination of both. Some are able to leave it all behind. I don't know for sure as I am not an expert on the topic. Many Afghan veterans spent the war on large FOBs behind large concrete walls - seeing little combat; although some of these "fobbits" were on the receiving end of daily rocket attacks. FOB Shank in Logar province was referred to as "rocket city". Then there are the combat veterans who drove the IED-seeded roads or fought the many small combat engagements from isolated outposts scattered across the Afghan countryside. In the last few years the troops have been participating in advisory missions. One thing is for sure, over the course of the 13-year long war - everyone's experience is different and unique and yet there is a lot of commonality. In addition, upon returning to the states - there is a varied reaction to no longer being in the war. Some combat veterans certainly miss the war; others not so much.

One writer tries to capture this aspect of the Afghan War. He writes about rocket attacks on FOB Shank and then goes on to discuss PTSD. He explains to us that returning combat veterans see life a little bit different from the other 99% of the U.S. population who are not in the military. And he explains PTSD in a different manner than I have heard before; but with which I can certainly understand.

Read Nolan Peterson's piece entitled "Why soldiers miss war", posted on Blue Force Tracker, January 4, 2015.

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