The War on Terrorism and the Effect on Soldiers and Their Plight

The War on Terrorism is more than just a war over seas. Although some believe we are at War for the wrong reasons such as Oil there is a bigger picture to see like the life of a deployed soldier, the hardships they must face, and the things they left behind. Along with that though is the good we do helping other countries become liberated and rebuild for a better country.

There is a reason that we are at war overseas with certain countries. It is a political reason that I do not know of. Or maybe it is to help those countries. Either way we are doing a good thing while being over there. When I went to Iraq in 2003 at the start of the war I asked my sergeant “why are we here”. He replied with “to get Sadaam out of power”. That was a good enough reason for me. After the major fighting and the destruction of the Iraqi army the US pretty much controlled the country.

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One of the best things is how the people of the country thank you every day and are happy and do not have to live in fear all of the time. The US Military now polices the cities in Iraq and give it order in a sense. We have units that train the new government, police force, and new Iraqi Military. By training those Iraqi soldiers they will have the knowledge that we have to fight insurgents and other countries that mean to do their people harm. Helping train the police force will build the law that the country needs to have order in their cities.

And by helping them to build a Government they will have order and a democracy as opposed to the tyranny that once ruled that country. Over all we cannot just up and leave them battered and broken until they can stand on their own feet. When they can take care of the insurgents and combat that is being brought to their country on their own then and only then can we pack up and leave calling it a job done. One thing people could ask as a question could be is a 17 year old person ready to defend their country. The majority of the United States Military is made up of new recruits from the ages of 17 to 25.

A person is considered an adult at around the age of 18 some might say but are they really ready to see what war looks like and is about. Not everybody at the age of 18 is mentally the same. When a person goes from living at mommy and daddy’s and enlists into the military and they get sent overseas right out of basic training it is a big shock to their minds. They are no longer in a safe atmosphere under the wing of a parent and they are thrown into a place that they have to make critical decisions that could be the difference of life and death.

During war people die. It is inevitable. But not everybody can pick up a weapon and be able to take the life of another and be able to just shake it off. One can never be prepared enough for an experience like that. It is easier as you get older and more used to the thought of it but that could take a little bit longer than when you are 18. However there are those out there that are able to handle the life in combat and if so give the ultimate sacrifice, that being their own life. A great example is a 19 year old man named Private First Class Ross A.

McGinnis. He was awarded the highest medal the Army has to offer, The Congressional Medal of Honor. He was awarded this for his acts of bravery by jumping on a grenade that was thrown into his vehicle to absorb the blast so that his other four comrades could escape. It is an act that should never be forgotten. Life in a combat zone is a rough life. It is not for everybody and all times are not bad but one thing is that you are never alone. No matter how bad it gets there is always somebody to your left or to your right.

It is those people that depend on you and you depend on those people for support, to help you in times of need, and to cover your back while you cover their front. While going through the hard times with your fellow soldiers you build comradary. It brings soldiers closer together and makes lifelong friends out of complete strangers. Those same people years down the road will always remember you and you will always remember them. There are many times that you fear for your life in the combat zone. One must have a clear mind when the time comes that bullets are flying.

Having to see lives being taken, bodies just laying around for days, and blood stains in the streets from battles a week long past is a tough thing to soak up and is not for the faint hearted. Seeing a country in distraught and children who lost their fathers can break ones heart. As I said though not all times are bad. You are not always in actual combat and do get time to relax. Some people bring guitars and play some music, others read books, and some just listen to music which helps ease the mind. One of the greatest things to receive in the combat zone is a letter from home.

Hearing about a day your mother had or what your children are doing help ease the pain of being away from home and in such a horrible place that nobody should ever have to be in. The majority of soldiers in the military have a significant other at home. In some cases the spouses are in the military also. The stress on a military spouse can be great at times. They are the ones who have to stay at home for 12 to 15 months at a time taking care of everything at home while their soldier is away. They must pay the bills, maintain the house, and take care of the children.

They themselves become a one person army in a way. There are even some military wives that are pregnant and give birth to a first born child while their soldier is away for that time. Sometimes a military spouse does not know what they are getting themselves into and it is a new experience to them. Any person who is going to marry a soldier should always understand what it entails to enter that lifestyle. One of the major parts of being a military spouse is to always be on the go. When the soldier must change duty stations they must up and move to another state or sometimes another country if that be the case.

Becoming a military spouse is a job in itself if you ask me and I am sure others will agree. Everything I have talked about throughout this writing pertains to the war in 2003. Times have changed and things are done differently now and I am sure people think things a different way. I hope that Americans know the sacrifices that soldiers make every day by willingly putting their lives at risk so that we may all enjoy the freedoms that we take for granted on a daily basis. I also hope that this will enlighten any reader on the different aspects of The War on Terror.

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The War on Terrorism and the Effect on Soldiers and Their Plight. (2018, May 09). Retrieved from