Wednesday, August 12, 2015

War is Hell

War is hell. There is no two ways about it.

Some of my favorite war films are:
  • Saving Private Ryan
  • Blackhawk Down
  • Band of Brothers
  • Dirty Dozen
  • Patton
  • Lone Survivor
  • American Sniper
Netflix now knows I love war movies!

It amazes me the dedication that is depicted in these movies. Men willing to take bullets for others. Men purposely getting in harms way to do the things asked of them. Combat medics willing to run with their weapons lowered to quickly assess and care for the wounded are particularly awesome. In another life this is what I would have wanted to be after being a pilot and an astronaut. I don't enjoy blood and guts (though as an EMT right after my mission I saw some but NOTHING like war) but the ability to help in seconds is awesome. I love emergency medicine on every level but especially as the scene unfolds. There is a reason my "small" first aid kit is always rather large.

The character Hoot says in Blackhawk Down when asked why he returned from the Mogadishu Mile* run, quickly reloaded and was returning to fight and find his brothers:
"There’s still men out there. … When I go home people’ll ask me, ‘Hey Hoot, why do you do it, man? Why, you some kinda war junkie?’ I won’t say a word. Why? They won’t understand. They won’t understand why we do it. They won’t understand that it’s about the men next to you, and that’s it. That’s all it is."
What happened surround the The Battle of Mogadishu is a wonderful example of horrible leadership that was out-shown by great servant soldiers. Sometimes leadership just gets in the way. The reason this incident wasn't worst was because of the grunts on the ground were thinking with their heads. They improvised, adapted and overcame. They took their crappy situation and just found a way to succeed even limiting casualties. 19 men lost their lives that day. Men who should never, EVER be forgotten. That being said it could have been a lot worst. There is something inbred into Americans. We don't die easy and we don't die quick. Our soldiers especially.

*Read about the Mogadishu Mile by clicking the link (there is even a Goruck event based off of it). I will withhold most of what I think other than to say men left behind who were using UN vehicles for cover is a gross breach of responsibility by all levels of leadership. You don't leave people behind. EVER!

No comments: