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Anyone who has visited here for a little time, knows I have a love for the Milblogs. There’s something comforting in hearing (reading) the troops thoughts, in an open format. I enjoy reading their perspective on what’s going on around the world, and right there in their own platoon, group, what have you. I have to admit, I have a tendency to gravitate toward the Army blogs, after all, I was a lowly soldier at one time.
I keep up with all the new blogs out there through Milblogging.com. I learn about new sites, and important things that are happening right there. Just last week, they shared information about a new blog that would be posting updates from Afghanistan. Flying O, is authored by an Air Force flight nurse. She introduces herself to the blogging community in her first post titled Genesis. She quotes within this article, and I found it moving. I will share both a quote from her, and the one she quoted.
“This journey will be novel in some ways and repetitive in others. The wounds may be the same but the patients, my troops, and the experiences will not be.” – Flying O.
“I may be compelled to face danger, but never fear it, and while our soldiers can stand and fight, I can stand and feed and nurse them.” - Clara Barton
I plan on keeping tabs on her journey for a couple of reasons. One is just basic curiosity, another is simple pride in our troops, and third, I have two family members over their. A Nephew and a Cousin. I receive updates from my cousin by email, he is an Air Force Pilot, training the Afghan National Air Force, and helping them to organize their own operations. I would love to be able to share his stories, for they are fabulous, but I can not, for they are not mine to share. My Nephew is a Mortar Man in an infantry unit, patrolling the Afghan country side, and sharing a few pictures on his facebook page, and no I won’t share his facebook profile with you either, sorry. I will say that many of the pictures he shares, look so much like the Colorado Mountains, it amazes me.
Another milblog author will be heading back into the danger zone also. Bouhammer, by Tony Steward, who will be heading back to Afghanistan, but in civilian clothing this time. He’ll be working as a military contractor, supporting the “War Fighter”. I’m sure there is more to it than that, but imagine he can’t share to much. Bouhammer has been around for a long time, and Tony Steward is a retired Army First Sergeant, with a highly developed sense of duty. He has blogged about his service during his last deployment, which was in Afghanistan, and about his experiences after Army retirement, and his entry into the civilian life. Now he’ll be sharing his unique perspective from the outside looking in, with the knowledge of what it was really like.
Tony Steward wrote a very interesting post about “That Look”. We all have an idea what he’s talking about, but how many of us know what the look holds for each of those individual soldiers. Is caused from a memory, or a nightmarish cloud of experiences no one wants? Personally, I don’t know, having never seen combat, but I did understand his distinction between the new, young soldier with their look of anticipation even excitement, and the older more seasoned veteran with that “indescribable look of weariness and determination” You can also read an article on why he’s going back, The Military Is In My DNA, is all about his reasons. He also shares that he has one son who recently served 6 years as a combat medic, and one son putting forward the effort to gain acceptance to West Point.
Be sure to check them out, and find out what’s happening from their point of view.