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Thursday, June 19, 2003

This is what war does:
Specialist Corporal Michael Richardson added: "There was no dilemma when it came to shooting people who were not in uniform, I just pulled the trigger.

"It was up close and personal the whole time, there wasn't a big distance. If they were there, they were enemy, whether in uniform or not. Some were, some weren't."
-- From a Mirror article on US soldiers killing civilians. And these soldiers will be coming home (hopefully). Most certainly will not have deliberately targeted civilians, but most will probably have been deeply affected by what they saw and did in Iraq. Most will deal with it more or less successfully, able to return to society with only the occasional nightmares. Others will be deeply traumatized, and many of these will end up killing themselves more or less intentionally (It is reported that more Vietnam soldiers have committed suicide since the war than were killed in it). And a few will turn their anger on the rest of us, like Timothy McVeigh, Terry Nichols and John Allen Muhammed did.