Friday, August 1, 2008

Expiation for Killing: Young Soldiers Are Taught How to Kill But Not Taught That Killing in Combat Is Okay CONTINUED

In my July 27th post (, National Guardsman Big Tobacco ( currently deployed in Iraq provided his response to my July 20th post about post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in military personnel ( In that same July 27th post I put forth an insight from my husband Mitch about biblical public ceremonies of expiation of guilt for killing in battle.

In my earlier post today ( you can read Big Tobacco’s main response to this July 27th post. Below you can read the follow-up email Big Tobacco sent about this subject:


I thought more about what I said and I have more.

I think that it is easier for the officers than the men when it comes to PTSD. They might feel survivors’ guilt but they get over it. How many officers have you seen interviewed about PTSD? Probably none, even if they retired. It's always the Joes.

I can remember my first deployment when there was a suicide bombing at another checkpoint. My checkpoint went to 100 % security and we were ready to be attacked ourselves.

I was in a bunker with my machine gunner when he said: "Sergeant, I don't want to kill anyone." So I told him to get off the gun and go relieve our RTO and he would man the gun. In hindsight, this was a bad idea because freezing up on the radio would have been worse than the gun.

But that was proof right there that fear of killing permeates a soldier's existence, even if he doesn't know it.

Gotta go. Got a mission

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