They say war is hell, right? Well... whoever "they" are must have never been in one, because hell sounds like a nice place to be in comparison to a war zone. People like to think they understand what it's like to be in a war because they've watched "Black Hawk Down" so many times they could recite the script word for word. Or because they've played Call of Duty Modern Bullshit 2 for six months straight, or they read a book about it.

Give me a fucking break.

You have no idea what it's like out here. Do you really think that those games, those movies, those fucking books are the most accurate representation of what it's like to put your ass on the line day in and day out for a country that pretends to support you and then leaves you stranded out in the desert to get said ass shot off by some dumb fuck in a turban? If you do, let me tell you something.

You know nothing.

You know nothing, but I will teach you. You probably won't learn a damn thing, but fuck it, it's worth a shot. We are here, risking our lives for your sorry ass back home in the good ol' U S of fucking A not because we like it, not because we enjoy it, but because it is our fucking job. We signed up for it. Some of us are better at our job than others, but none of us like it. We go here thinking that we like it, with visions of movies and games and books about war dancing in our heads, but then we step off of that plane, and we see.

We see a place that is no fucking hope and all fucking despair. We see cities riddled with bullets and craters. Blood. Everywhere, more fucking blood. On the walls, on the ceiling, on the floor, in the sand. And that's just the beginning. Have you ever seen an orphan with a bleeding strip of skin for an arm? How about a woman whose hands and feet were dumped in a vat of battery acid? That's just the beginning. Have you seen your friends die one by one right next to you and by some sick, sardonic twist of fate you are the only one left standing? That's just the beginning.

So if you know where hell is, please tell me. I'd love to go on vacation there.