Posted by: CeCe | March 20, 2012

Sometimes the Army destroys them

Let me be perfectly clear before I begin, and say that I love the United States with everything I have (even if I hate the government.  Sorry guys.), and I can’t possibly begin to express my gratitude for the men and women in uniform who willingly lay their lives on the line to serve our country.  In fact, the latter is the reason for this post.  I’m sure all my friends on FB know, but of course not everyone out there in WordPress land knows, that my husband was in fact in the US Army for almost nine years.  In 2010, he was medically discharged (that’s another story, though it does play its part in this).  So, without further ado, “Sometimes the Army destroys them.”

I’m sure it is not news to some of you, or perhaps even many of you, that our nation’s military is currently facing one of its largest crises ever in American history.  This crisis may not necessarily have the potential to destroy the United States, but it absolutely must be addressed before it destroys more lives than it already has.

I’m also sure that by now everyone knows about the soldier who has been accused of killing sixteen civilians in Afghanistan.  This is by no means an isolated case.  If one does a simple Google search, there are many similar cases.  In San Jose, California, a soldier shot his 11 year old sister and then turned the gun on himself.  There are countless cases of soldiers coming home and killing their wives or girlfriends, such as this recent one, in which a soldier shot and killed his wife and then killed himself.

There is a huge percentage of soldiers who have committed suicide, to the point that military bases are actually beginning to be pushed into addressing the issue.  And when the military feels that it’s time to finally change something, it’s usually only because the problem has gotten to the point where it’s almost completely out of control.  I lived on a military base.  I know how these things work.  For example, while our soldiers were deployed at one point, several military wives were sexually assaulted on post.  At first, there was an outright refusal to address the issue.  But eventually, there were so many cases that they had to address it (though they still tried to keep it quiet; I only knew about it because I was a point of contact in my husband’s unit and I took it to the FRG leader).

Part of it is the fact that soldiers currently in the military were facing an extremely stressful schedule.  Over the last 10 years since we went to war with Afghanistan and Iraq, many soldiers have deployed up to eight times.  Many of them have not been given a full year to recuperate.  They weren’t given tools to deal with their PTSD.  And in fact, many soldiers who showed signs that they were suffering from PTSD and serious anxiety issues were told to “suck it up” and just keep driving on. Anyone who has ever suffered any trauma and developed PTSD can testify that just sucking it up and driving on is not going to work.  Eventually, that turmoil and torment within is going to find its way to the surface, and if the latest news is any indication, the results are going to give new definition to the word “tragic”.

Things are changing, yes.  But as of right now, we have thousands upon thousands of broken men and women who are looking around at a world in which they don’t feel they belong any longer, who are increasingly isolated and alienated.  How do they begin to pick up the pieces of the life they left behind for a year or more?  How can they ever feel “normal” again?  They’ve seen horrors you and I can’t possibly imagine.

What’s more, the military does sometimes destroy soldiers, even without them deploying.  My husband is a great example of this.  It’s only through his own strength and mine that things aren’t much worse.  The Army chewed him up, destroyed his health, and then claimed that it was his fault all along, and despite the best efforts of an amazing neurologist who insisted that my husband’s problems were not pre-existing, the Army chose to take the path that would lead to them having the least accountability.  This is what they do!  As long as they have more people as fodder, what does it matter if a few thousand lives are destroyed?  What does it matter if dozens of soldiers take their own lives and/or the lives of their loved ones?  So what if hundreds of families are broken and wind up dealing with the sudden and horrific deaths of people who should have outlived them?

It’s despicable.

These are human beings who willingly lay their lives on the line for our nation.  They deserve better than this.


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Responses

  1. […] couple months back, I hinted at what happened with my husband (here: https://aseekersmusings.wordpress.com/2012/03/20/sometimes-the-army-destroys-them/).  Now I think it’s time for those who don’t know to read the full story.  Let me […]


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