Yes sir, our military. Especially during this war, as (trying to stay non political) it’s not like the USA vs Japan, USA vs Germany, or even North USA vs South USA, etc. It’s the most undefined war our country has ever fought, and that’s the war on terrorism in general. It’s sorta the ‘unknown’ enemy, as you never know who in that country is on your side and who isn’t.
Nothing but respect for those men and women. They fight every single day for this country and its values, and it’s our values at their best.
Whatever you believe the ‘real’ reason for our war is, the truth is, NO ONE is signing up to kill and possibly die for oil, or money. They sign up because there is something going on over here or over there that they believe in. People in the military have guts and bravery rarely seen in this day and age.
The most this has ever personally affected me, outside of hearing my grandpa’s old war stories, etc, was a friend of mine. A pro wrestling promoter that I had worked for for about 2 years and become very close friends with at the time. We were scheduled to wrestle each other the night the war started. He was a veteran of the Persian Gulf War.
I remember showing up, walking into the locker room in Cleveland and seeing him sitting there, shaking and just staring off into space. And this is a guy I once wrestled in barbed wire (my one foray into ‘hardcore wrestling’), and have seen stabbed with glass, cut open, and lit on fire on at least 4 seperate occassions. He’s been shot 3 times in his life, and grew up in inner city Detroit. And I’ve NEVER seen him look like this.
The ref for our match, a mutual friend, came up and told me what was up. I went and sat down and talked to him. We talked for over an hour about the Gulf War, and how after he could no longer do field duty, his job was to send the bodies back with the flags on them, exactly like the pic above.
He cried, a lot. I hugged him, and we talked. He said all he could think about was shipping those bodies back home. 4 were the guys he was trained with, and very close to, and how almost ten years later it was something that he thought about at least once a day every day of his life.
And that night, ladies and gentlemen, I took easily the worst ass kicking I’ve ever had in my life. And I’ve been in a lot of legit fights in my day, grew up in Chitown, and been through enough shit in pro wrestling to consider myself ‘tough’. Nothing I’ve ever been through compared to those 12 minutes. He beat me like I killed someone he loved.
Then we got to the back, and he came up to me, thanked me for the match (lil inside wrestling info there…pretty standard), and then started crying again. I laughed, or tried to, and said it was okay. He apologized, and said, “Gavin, I had to do that. I hope you undertand.” After the stories about shipping his dead friends who had fought along with him for our country and freedom, as well as the freedom of an oppressed people in a foreign land, I did.