One of my adult children asked me what I did in Vietnam. All my children know that I was directly involved in the war more than once in two tours of duty but none had asked me what I’d done. It wasn’t an easy question to answer as I was in operations and intelligence aboard a nuclear armed ship of war. What I did was classified and I still respect that security clearance, even after all these years.
Once you’ve been to war in any capacity there are a couple of truths one should never deny or obfuscate. War is about killing and what I was tasked with was finding certain groups through RF signals and having those groups eliminated. For better or ill I did my job well enough to have been promoted as high as I could go in four years. I was then asked to ship over to go a third time and refused. Third times the charm, had crossed my mind as I considered going or not.
So, in general terms I told him what I wrote above. I left out the weight I have carried since then after having found out the war was not truthfully begun and certainly should not have been waged. This turned me around and around for a good part of my adult life and led to a negative mindset for many years afterward.
Now I see the predicament repeated again and again such as Afghanistan for example. Why? That question is what all of us have asked since World War Two. Why did we put our lives on the line, those who lived, not for the country, but for politicians? I’ll tell you why. The military industrial complex. War is for profit and most anything will justify going to war now. I am not speaking of 9/11 however. Rather, I am speaking for the dead. Don’t kill us for profit.