It's amazing to think that we've been in Shrub's War, fighting a country that never attacked us, longer than we were in WWII. And our politicians seem to be trying their best to keep us in Iraq into the next decade. This letter, from L. Miller in Diyala, Iraq, seems to be fairly typically of sentiment among those in the military about the recent 3-month duty extension:
Currently, I am an Army officer serving my second tour of duty in Iraq. I fought in Falluja in 2004. I protected Iraqi voters during the first elections in 2005. I'm currently slugging it out with insurgents and terrorists in the violent Diyala province. My soldiers and I have seen and been witness to things that no one should ever have to see and have lived through events that keep me up nights. Like most combat arms officers here, I live with the fact that many of my soldiers have not survived the battles we have fought, yet we survivors continue to soldier on. To learn of my unit's extension by watching the news is an insult. Many commanders and leaders throughout the Army, including myself, only learned of this extension after their own subordinates saw a press conference on TV and questioned them about it. Informing soldiers this way is a disrespectful act and angers me, many of my soldiers, and many of their family members.
While my own soldiers informing me of the inevitable extension of tours of duty disappoints and angers me, the fact that an already arduous yearlong tour is being extended absolutely infuriates me. Do leaders have absolutely no respect for soldiers and their families or is the Army this broken? I'm sure reality lies somewhere in between. As for myself, I am tired. I'm tired of this war. I'm tired of seeing my soldiers die. I'm tired of never being home. I'm tired of having no answer when my soldiers ask me if we're really defending our nation. I'm tired of not seeing my newborn son or my wife. I'm tired of not being home for Christmas. Because I am so tired of these things, I will tender my resignation when I return home ... whenever that is. I'm pretty sure I won't be the only one.