While we usually don’t cover the Army on this blog, this piece by Elizabeth Samet, a West Point professor, reflecting on the death of one of her students in Afghanistan, touches on some themes not partisan to any one service.

In the years since his graduation, Dan had become a correspondent–someone whose messages I welcomed, whose insights I valued. When I asked what he needed, he would say he needed nothing: “No specific needs or desires right now, but I’ll let you know if I lose/break anything.” When I asked him how he was, he would say, “[L]ife is good. Except the whole Afghanistan thing.”

Posted by Jeffrey Withington in Army

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  • UltimaRatioReg

    I would disagree with Ms. Samet on one point.

    As close as she may have grown with her correspondents, they have not brought Helmand or Herat or Kabul, or Anbar, Ramadi, Mosul, or Fallujah any closer.

    On the contrary. In a very real way, they have keep such places very distant. Intentionally so. So that Ms. Samet and the vast majority of people in her life do not have to be worried about having their throats cut in the night or being burned alive or blow to bits for the “crimes” of free thought, or worshiping in the way they believe. No, the heroes Ms. Samet knows will never tell her the real price of keeping those places far away.

    But she can be assured that the gifts she gave each of them are brought out in the grimmest of times there and cherished as much as any they own.