When I was younger, when someone brought up war, I thought of great battles between good and evil.
That's what I thought war, and, by extension, the soldiers who fought in them were like. Wars were noble battles of good and evil, of right versus wrong, and the men who fought in them had always chosen to be there by their own will.
Call it childhood ignorance, but that's the truth. So whenever I got to choose what I wanted to read, I always went for the war stories. And what did those stories show me?
At that point, something very different from what my mind could have even fathomed.
I won't say there wasn't heroism, or nobility in those stories, for they were there in spades.
But also there were the unspeakable horrors of war. I saw how good men on both sides were forced to fight against one another, and were torn apart in the process.
I saw the untold destruction that war had on civilians and on the world, as wrecks of once proud machines began to litter the earth.
And I saw how men lost themselves to war. How they buckled under the weight of war and came home broken, often to never be fixed.
Or how they never returned home at all. Living each day as if the war never ended.
So what am I trying to say here? Why tell you about war? Honestly I don't know. I think it's mainly just to get these thoughts out of my head. I want to forget what I learned and I want someone to hear them.
This isn't to say that I think man should never fight.
There are just some times when the only way to save what you love is through sacrifice, and sometimes even war.
For this world harbors evil that cannot be stopped by words alone.
Some simply want to see the greatness of human potential twisted into something horrible.
And there must always be those willing to fight against it. To fight for what is right and just above all else.
Without forgetting that those who fight for you and against you, underneath the armor, are men like you who are just as scared as you. They probably fight, or have joined the fight, for the same reason you did. They have watched their friends die, just like you, and they will bleed just like you.
And they fight, just like you, against an unyielding and colossal enemy, hoping that one day the fighting will end, and everyone can go home to people who love them, and that no one will ever have to experience the torture that is war.
It is a vain dream, but a dream worth fighting for, nonetheless.
And in war, a dream can help you stay alive, or at least help.
Perhaps I am still foolish and naive when it comes to war. Perhaps I don't have any answers. Perhaps this was all just bumbling about. But it come freely from my mind for the time being. And perhaps, someone will understand what I mean. Perhaps.
Amended text by cadistrius