Being a combat veteran, I have suffered, from the time I was in combat. There’s no pat on the back, or welcome back, that will take away the nightmares I have.
This idea of patriotism or having a flag or even attending parades does not, in my mind, represent the real truth. The veterans that have not seen combat are very fortunate. We that have seen what combat does have tasted the horrors of hell.
The public ideas of heroes that stand up to give speeches are things that politicians want and need to get votes. To me politicians that give speeches on Veterans Day about the fallen are like parasites. They feed off the emotion of limited-minded people to get the military corporate complex more money. Their propaganda is to scare the common man into believing more is better. We forget about the ones that lost limbs and lost mental capacity, and of a poor VA system. No wonder there is despair and suicide grips the survivors of combat. No wonder more Vietnam veterans commit suicide after the war, more than were killed during the war.
Those that are willing to go along with the lies of war, believing patriotism is the highest of good, have never seen the hell we call combat. “Thank you for your service,” we are supposed to say. They are used to perpetuate this myth.
We as veterans are used to this response to honor it. On Veteran Day we celebrate ourselves and our nation by the myth of glory, honor, patriotism, and heroism, but do we see the horrors of combat as myself and my Dad once saw? Do we know inhuman qualities drilled into soldiers and the ones that tasted combat, and we think that they will be normal in the real world? For more than just one day, we owe combat veterans our lives.