Posted by Michael Putzel • October 13, 2017
Excerpt from an address to alumni of C Troop, 2/17 Cavalry, 101st Airborne Division
San Antonio, Texas, October 7, 2017
How many of you know the term “moral injury?”
It is not a recognized disability or as carefully defined as PTSD, but it is a concept many of you may recognize. As it is generally understood, moral injury refers to people who come home from war and find over time that they can’t square was they did with the values they learned growing up. They may have performed admirably, been proud that they fulfilled their duty, saved the lives of buddies and earned the gratitude of their superiors, their friends and their families. But for one reason or another they come to feel a sense of guilt, of betrayal.
Whether the cause they fought […] READ MORE
Posted by Michael Putzel • September 30, 2017
When I stepped off the Pan Am plane that brought me to Vietnam the first time in the fall of 1969, a small crowd of greeters was assembled on the tarmac between the new arrivals from the plane and the obligatory customs and immigration officials waiting for us inside the terminal at Saigon’s Tan Son Nhut (now Tan Son Nhat) Airport. There was a war on, but only one person was wearing a helmet. He had on a custom-made civilian “TV shirt” with epaulets and multiple pockets, including one for pens on the left sleeve and another for cigarettes on the right. I was already nervous about my new assignment as a war correspondent and probably took little comfort in hearing the guy with the steel pot on his […] READ MORE