"The American experience in Afghanistan varies widely. Some areas get no activity, some areas get excessive activity. The fobbits of Bagram may never leave the confines of that most august enclave for their entire tour.
The fobbits of Phoenix may only boast two conops in their entire tour.
The young men out in Kunar* get shot at nearly every day.
The young men and women at Bagram and Phoenix get shot at never.
The major problem I had with some of the young Americans under my command was that most of them were scared, privledged, lazy, assuming, careless, disrespectful, harbingers of yet another generation of ungrateful black holes that believe everthing that gets caught in the tendrils of their gravity should be given to them on bended knee.
Kinda like the "I only joined for the college money." type.
Now I'm not disrespecting all of the tower guards and those who were forced by command to stay at Phoenix and BAF because a lot of them hated it and would be the pivot man on "Gay Thursday" for a chance to leave But, if you were there you could spot the fobbit a mile away. I actually had to "fire" i.e [send back to monster base] two of my squad cause they couldn't manage to play well with others. [see falling asleep on guard, dropping a 240 B off the roof and lying to the CSM about it, Drinking, driving a UAH into a river etc...] These were the types that were a danger not just to themselves but to all others around them for their carelessness and inability to spend the time and effort it takes to be a member of a team.
Some were released from "fobbitude" for a short forray into the wild , kinda like a catch and release program, they now feel that since they experienced war close up and were changed by it that they have the clout to pass judgment on others and their experiences. I got news for you boys…all the dead in Afghanistan can’t erase your guilt for surviving or end your grief. You must walk that path alone.
Many of these men hate me to this day for making them do the right thing but guess what...they may be alive today because of the things I made them do.
I'm getting out of the Army in a few months after 12 years and the war had a lot to do with my decision to leave but more to the point was the lack of heart and soul and sense of sacrifice from these young Americans I worked with.
Are all young men and women this way? Of course not. I have found many that I treat like my sons and would , if I had too, go back to war with. Alas, there are too few of them for me to stay.