Very good article about Garry Trudeau. Well worth a read.
The very first person he spoke to was a 27-year-old MP named Danielle Green. She had been a college basketball star, a left-handed point guard at Notre Dame. Green had just lost that hand in Iraq. She’d been on the roof of a police station, behind sandbags, trying to defend it from enemy fire, when she took a direct hit from a rocket-propelled grenade.
“This was an elite athlete, and she’d lost her whole professional identity,” Trudeau said, “but that’s not what she wanted to talk about. What she wanted to talk about was how her buddies carried her down, put her on the hood of a Humvee, where they stopped the bleeding, then went back up to the roof, against orders, and found her hand buried under sandbags. They took off her wedding ring and gave it to her. She’s telling me this with a million-dollar smile. This was not about bitterness or loss. It was about gratitude.”
And so Trudeau started taking notes.
“When I talk to wounded veterans, I usually don’t ask them what they think the mission was. I don’t presume, because their lives are wrenching enough without the suggestion that their sacrifices may have been without meaning. Moreover, if that is so, it will become apparent to them soon enough . . . The young men and women who we’ve repeatedly put in harm’s way are paying the price for this misbegotten mission, and as long as it continues, I, like so many of our countrymen, must walk this strange line between hating the war but honoring the warrior. I don’t know how long we can keep it up. . .”