Thursday, October 17, 2013

The Forgotten War: Love Letter to a Soldier in Afghanistan

Despite what politicians say, the "war" in Afghanistan is not over. The claims that we are withdrawing troops is inaccurate. We continue to deploy soldiers to the country, despite press coverage of the President and others talking about a withdrawal. In plain words, this is simply false.

I can say this with certainty, because of the way in which deploying soldiers have found their way into my own life, especially one particular soldier, a soldier I love, respect, and admire. You see, that soldier is, once again, in Afghanistan, just like thousands and thousands of other American soldiers. So, this talk about withdrawal and everything is, as the German would say, ganz falsch (entirely false).

So, with that said, here is a second public love letter to that soldier currently deployed to Afghanistan (a snippet):

Pre-Deployment: Night

Your green combat fatigues, your gray combat goggles, your brown combat boots -- the boxes with holsters and caps and gloves and medicines and even more field supplies -- all of these things sit quietly on the floor of my tiny apartment. Even though you are away, the tan war bags that you will cart with you to dusty Afghanistan rest in front of my little black refrigerator. At the moment, you carry just one camouflaged colored backpack. You are gone because it's a weekday during pre-deployment training, but not by a very far distance, just a few hours away. Despite the short distance between the two of us, I cry and hug your green socks and combat clothing, even your holster, I hug that as well.
The piece can be read in its entirety here.

Photo Credit: Lawrence Torres

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