Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Exploration Seven

What stuck out the most to me was how dangerous a place like Korengal Valley in Afghanistan was. It was shocking to hear that about 70% of U.S. bombs we dropped on Korengal Valley. That Valley was one of the deadliest places. The soldiers would have to take fire and defend everyday. In the video there were multiple occasions where the viewers were able to witness the fighting and action. I thought it was interesting how the one soldier was talking about getting an adrenaline high from shooting a gun, and how there was nothing that could compare to it. When shooting a gun he states, "You can't get a better high, it is like crack . . . you can't come down." The interviewer then asked him, "What are you going to do when you gets home?" He replied, " I have no idea." That is one of the common troubles with returning veterans, they are always wanting the rush that they feel when they're in war. When they return home though there is nothing that compares to it, and they almost get addicted to the feeling they get with fighting.
There were many scenes in the documentary that were very impacting. Two of them really stood out to me while I was watching the video. The first was after the soldiers bombed parts of the Korengal Valley, and then it showed that the bombs had hit an innocent family's home. 5 of the local people died. The images of the wounded people, and especially the crying hurt children were heart breaking. It was interesting seeing Captain Kearney's response to what happened, and how upset he seemed to be that he let something like that happen. Another meaningful scene was that during one of the ending ambushes, Rock Avalanche. Most of the soldiers said that time was one of the most scariest times during their deployment. It was very eye opening to see what the soldiers went through, and how much emotional trauma was caused from the war. Especially when one of the best soldiers died, and watching how the soldiers reacted, like how Aron Hijar was so effected by the death of his friend that he was crying uncontrollably. He says that war and that specific time in the war, "was one of those moments that made me appreciate everything I have."
I would extremely urge my friends and family to watch this video. It made me respect and appreciate all the soldiers and what they are doing in Afghanistan. It is amazing of how blessed the U.S.A is to have such brave and honorable soldiers to defend the country. I believe by watching the movie that it can really shed light on what the war is really like, and for most people I am sure that they had no idea that war is truly like this. Especially after reading The Things They Carried, I was able to understand and appreciate everything in the video.


  1. Rachel, your comments are really insightful and comprehensive. I also noticed how the ruch of war is so addictive. I am reading a book called A Long Way Gone by Ismael Beah, who was a boy soldier in Sierra Leone. It's an incredible book and it shows the process of trying to rehabilitate children who have been in war and trained to kill without mercy. It is not an easy job for men nor boys, I think, to get a more "normal" or civilian way of thinking to return to your head after years of combat.

  2. I agree with you on the scene where the children were injured. It often seems we go into war without care or concern for other human life, but Captain Kearney's reaction to this shows that soldiers are not heartless. Our soldiers are there to do their job and do feel terribly guilty when things go wrong and innocent people get hurt.

  3. I completely agree with the impact that the image of the injured children left. I also wrote about this. That image of those little children just crying and hurting stuck with me all day long after watching that movie.

  4. Being in this much combat, really shows how hard it is to come back to a "normal" life. Most of us cant even come close to what they are feeling when they are in the heat of combat.