Followers

Friday, April 29, 2005

MEMORIES OF DEATH

There is good out there even though at times it all seems bleak. There is also Death. How many have dealt in death? Some would call it murder. Well, I have a confession to make, my platoon and I have had over 192 confirmed kills during our first deployment here (during the war on our way to capture Baghdad). We targeted people and then they just disappeared. Why? They were going to kill me. I had my orders and they had theirs. We were mortal enemies because we were told that we were. There are some who would tell me to not think about what I had to do, or it will drive you insane. For me however, I can't help but think about it. They were men like me. Some of them were even conscripted into military service. What made them fight? Were they more scared of their leader than of us? What has become of their families? How could I forget or not think about all that I have done? Should I wash my hands of it all like Pontius Pilot? I think not. My choices have been made, my actions irreversible. So live I will, for we were the victors right? The ones who survived. It is our victory, and our burden to carry, and I bear it with both pride and with the greatest of remorse. Do you think that there is a special place in hell for people like me? Or will God judge me to have been a man of honor and duty? When they told us how many we had killed my first thought was pride. Pride for such a high number. How does one feel pride for killing? Two years later and my thoughts are changed, transformed if you will. Those were just numbers so long ago when I first heard them. Now however, I know that they were men with families like mine. It is crazy that we humans can be so destructive. There are people out there lining up to become martyrs, to kill themselves in order to kill others, and yet you still have people who fight tooth and nail to live for just one more minute longer. We are an oxymoron, humanity that is. What makes someone look down the sights of a rifle to take aim on a fellow human being? What does it take to pull the trigger? I have done those things. I have done them and would do it again if it meant returning to my wife and children again. Some of you may think that I am a beast and you are probably right. I am. I will kill, I will take aim and fire, I will call fire upon you from afar with rockets and bombs or anything I can get my hands on if it means that I will see my family one more time. But, I will also choose to dwell on and live with my choices. I chose to enlist as a soldier. My time has been served and now it is becoming overtime, but I won't just run away. As much as I would love to just be done (and rightly so now that I have been involuntarily extended). One thing is all I ask of you. I ask that you not judge me. Let me be my own judge for my judgment is harsher than any you could give me anyway. For I will always have those memories to remind me of what I have done and what I am. Please know that I pray for peace everyday, that and to see my family again...

9 comments:

Stacy said...

You are not a monster, you are a United States soldier. Evil does exist, Islamic terrorist are evil. Lines have to be drawn and enforced. Seventeen UN resolutions did nothing, actions were required. Maybe if we would have stepped in earlier in WWII, Hitler wouldn't have killed as many Jews.

Anonymous said...

It is only because the President of the United States declared war
that many had to bear the consequences. He, and not you, will be judged.
He has said it many times. History will be his judge.
Your conscience may be troubled now by so many things but so many others
are praying for, and with you. Draw comfort from such a thing now, if you can.
If not, then later when it is possible. Easy does it.

otowi said...

I think intention has a lot to do with judgment. Maybe not in U.S. law, but I think perhaps so in God's judgment.

So if we go through life with the best intentions and sometimes things just suck or we're stuck with lose-lose choices, that is something entirely different than if we go through life with hate in our hearts, actively seeking to cause pain, etc.

God bless you.

Trevor said...

The only sure thing is that humans will judge you while you live, and God will not. When your death day comes, only you will be able to decide whether you lived your life in a way that was worthwhile.

Lots of people think they are enforcing God's will here on Earth, and all I can tell you for sure is that all of them are wrong most of the time. Don't do things in the name of God and you'll be OK when and if you ever meet.

Nettie said...

I, for one, choose not to judge you. I choose to say that even though we may disagree on some issues, that I think anyone who questions as you do can never lose his humanity. May you continue to think as you do.

Anonymous said...

I do not know you, SGT Scott-Singley, but I thank you. I thank you for putting human emotion into was; for again stating what should be obvious, all Iraqis are not evil; for protecting me and all of us in the USA; for making my hardest decision of the day being what beer I choose. There is no way to thank you enough, but if you're ever in Indiana, I'll buy you your choice of beer.

Anonymous said...

800-394-9544 is the GI Rights Hotline number. They can help you if you want to end your participation in this war.

mj said...

I admire you for your truthfulness to yourself. I pray for you soldiers every day as I would not want to be in your shoes. The saddest blog is the one about the 3 year old boy that was killed by soldier gunfire. (one of many I am sure)
I do not judge you. I hope all military is as truthful as you.
and I pray you get to be one of the lucky ones to return to your family
mj

Sara said...

All Soldiers go to heaven. You are no monster. You signed a contract "kill or be killed". I am proud to call you an American Hero...your work made the world a better place for my son, and your children who are adorable as hell, to grow up