Long-Term Consequences of the Lessons of War

I don’t know what was going through Robert Bales’s mind in March, when he quietly picked up his rifle and went house to house shooting anyone he encountered. I have no idea how he arrived at the decision that this was an appropriate course of action. Perhaps it came suddenly. Perhaps he got some bad news from home, or learned he had lost yet another friend. Maybe it was gradual, the cumulative effect of violence pooling within him over time. Maybe what started as a trickle of anger during his first combat deployment grew into a torrent of rage by his fourth. But his action, which we call abhorrent, is visible to us only in its extremity. It is a manifestation, a symptom of the violence in which we have long been engaged. ...more
I think it is easy to forget the long-term consequences of war. We have so many young people ...more