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No Apology Could Atone- PTSD

August 7, 2011

When I came back home from Vietnam I realized just how different I had become.  War had seemed like a game or a movie to me before I went to Vietnam. I had always had a strong self image and actually thought I was special.   After only a year I realized how insignificant I really was.  The powers that be really could have cared less whether I lived or died.  If the order was given for me to lay down my life, I would really have had no choice.  No matter how stupid or wrong the decision was that put me in that position, I would have had to obey.

No apology could atone for what I had seen or found out about the war.  Not only would I return a non hero (which I am thankful for) but a non-being as well.  My life and actually the lives of 44,000 brave soldiers could be snuffed out on a careless act, a stupid act, a random act.  We meant nothing in the grand scheme of things.

I came home and this scenario carried over to those who were supposed to welcome me with open arms.  People at home had gone on with their lives and life just went on without me.  Everyone was rushing around pursuing things that now, to me, seemed so insignificant.  I came more to realize that the war was about power and making money and very little of it was about “Keeping America Free”.  The Domino effect which was meant to terrify the public about the rise of Communism if we failed, was completely forgotten and kicked by the wayside once the War ended.  The lies told to justify our involvement in the war went unpunished nor apologized for.  44,000 young men and women gone in a blink and never to be heard from again. 44,000 mothers and spouses and families and friends that would never be the same.

I know that, had I died, my Mother and Father and Sisters would have been proud of me and they would try to justify why my sacrifice made sense but really, what did it matter?  We left Vietnam in defeat and what changed? Nothing changed and now I realize it was just another lie to try and sway the uninformed public to keep the war going.

It took me quite a while to wrap my head around this issue.  I suppose religious people will claim that there is evil in this World and without evil we cannot have good.  I personally have problems with this grand scheme idea.  I simply cannot see it.  My idea of God, is one that would not see war, mass deaths or suffering of innocents, as any part of a grand scheme OKed by God. 

So when I hear the “Support the Troops” I hear it differently.  This is not a cry to support the troops but to support the policy of war.  No matter what each service person will come home with his own crosses to bear.  It is only in the safety of home that the healing can begin.