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"I Am Sorry That It Has Come to This": A Soldier's Last Words
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vinman Offline
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"I Am Sorry That It Has Come to This": A Soldier's Last Words
http://gawker.com/i-am-sorry-that-it-has...-534538357


Daniel Somers was a veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom. He was part of Task Force Lightning, an intelligence unit. In 2004-2005, he was mainly assigned to a Tactical Human-Intelligence Team (THT) in Baghdad, Iraq, where he ran more than 400 combat missions as a machine gunner in the turret of a Humvee, interviewed countless Iraqis ranging from concerned citizens to community leaders and and government officials, and interrogated dozens of insurgents and terrorist suspects. In 2006-2007, Daniel worked with Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC) through his former unit in Mosul where he ran the Northern Iraq Intelligence Center. His official role was as a senior analyst for the Levant (Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, Israel, and part of Turkey). Daniel suffered greatly from PTSD and had been diagnosed with traumatic brain injury and several other war-related conditions. On June 10, 2013, Daniel wrote the following letter to his family before taking his life. Daniel was 30 years old. His wife and family have given permission to publish it.

I am sorry that it has come to this.

The fact is, for as long as I can remember my motivation for getting up every day has been so that you would not have to bury me. As things have continued to get worse, it has become clear that this alone is not a sufficient reason to carry on. The fact is, I am not getting better, I am not going to get better, and I will most certainly deteriorate further as time goes on. From a logical standpoint, it is better to simply end things quickly and let any repercussions from that play out in the short term than to drag things out into the long term.

You will perhaps be sad for a time, but over time you will forget and begin to carry on. Far better that than to inflict my growing misery upon you for years and decades to come, dragging you down with me. It is because I love you that I can not do this to you. You will come to see that it is a far better thing as one day after another passes during which you do not have to worry about me or even give me a second thought. You will find that your world is better without me in it.

I really have been trying to hang on, for more than a decade now. Each day has been a testament to the extent to which I cared, suffering unspeakable horror as quietly as possible so that you could feel as though I was still here for you. In truth, I was nothing more than a prop, filling space so that my absence would not be noted. In truth, I have already been absent for a long, long time.

My body has become nothing but a cage, a source of pain and constant problems. The illness I have has caused me pain that not even the strongest medicines could dull, and there is no cure. All day, every day a screaming agony in every nerve ending in my body. It is nothing short of torture. My mind is a wasteland, filled with visions of incredible horror, unceasing depression, and crippling anxiety, even with all of the medications the doctors dare give. Simple things that everyone else takes for granted are nearly impossible for me. I can not laugh or cry. I can barely leave the house. I derive no pleasure from any activity. Everything simply comes down to passing time until I can sleep again. Now, to sleep forever seems to be the most merciful thing.

You must not blame yourself. The simple truth is this: During my first deployment, I was made to participate in things, the enormity of which is hard to describe. War crimes, crimes against humanity. Though I did not participate willingly, and made what I thought was my best effort to stop these events, there are some things that a person simply can not come back from. I take some pride in that, actually, as to move on in life after being part of such a thing would be the mark of a sociopath in my mind. These things go far beyond what most are even aware of.

To force me to do these things and then participate in the ensuing coverup is more than any government has the right to demand. Then, the same government has turned around and abandoned me. They offer no help, and actively block the pursuit of gaining outside help via their corrupt agents at the DEA. Any blame rests with them.

Beyond that, there are the host of physical illnesses that have struck me down again and again, for which they also offer no help. There might be some progress by now if they had not spent nearly twenty years denying the illness that I and so many others were exposed to. Further complicating matters is the repeated and severe brain injuries to which I was subjected, which they also seem to be expending no effort into understanding. What is known is that each of these should have been cause enough for immediate medical attention, which was not rendered.

Lastly, the DEA enters the picture again as they have now managed to create such a culture of fear in the medical community that doctors are too scared to even take the necessary steps to control the symptoms. All under the guise of a completely manufactured “overprescribing epidemic,” which stands in stark relief to all of the legitimate research, which shows the opposite to be true. Perhaps, with the right medication at the right doses, I could have bought a couple of decent years, but even that is too much to ask from a regime built upon the idea that suffering is noble and relief is just for the weak.

However, when the challenges facing a person are already so great that all but the weakest would give up, these extra factors are enough to push a person over the edge.

Is it any wonder then that the latest figures show 22 veterans killing themselves each day? That is more veterans than children killed at Sandy Hook, every single day. Where are the huge policy initiatives? Why isn’t the president standing with those families at the state of the union? Perhaps because we were not killed by a single lunatic, but rather by his own system of dehumanization, neglect, and indifference.

It leaves us to where all we have to look forward to is constant pain, misery, poverty, and dishonor. I assure you that, when the numbers do finally drop, it will merely be because those who were pushed the farthest are all already dead.

And for what? Bush’s religious lunacy? Cheney’s ever growing fortune and that of his corporate friends? Is this what we destroy lives for

Since then, I have tried everything to fill the void. I tried to move into a position of greater power and influence to try and right some of the wrongs. I deployed again, where I put a huge emphasis on saving lives. The fact of the matter, though, is that any new lives saved do not replace those who were murdered. It is an exercise in futility.

Then, I pursued replacing destruction with creation. For a time this provided a distraction, but it could not last. The fact is that any kind of ordinary life is an insult to those who died at my hand. How can I possibly go around like everyone else while the widows and orphans I created continue to struggle? If they could see me sitting here in suburbia, in my comfortable home working on some music project they would be outraged, and rightfully so.

I thought perhaps I could make some headway with this film project, maybe even directly appealing to those I had wronged and exposing a greater truth, but that is also now being taken away from me. I fear that, just as with everything else that requires the involvement of people who can not understand by virtue of never having been there, it is going to fall apart as careers get in the way.

The last thought that has occurred to me is one of some kind of final mission. It is true that I have found that I am capable of finding some kind of reprieve by doing things that are worthwhile on the scale of life and death. While it is a nice thought to consider doing some good with my skills, experience, and killer instinct, the truth is that it isn’t realistic. First, there are the logistics of financing and equipping my own operation, then there is the near certainty of a grisly death, international incidents, and being branded a terrorist in the media that would follow. What is really stopping me, though, is that I simply am too sick to be effective in the field anymore. That, too, has been taken from me.

Thus, I am left with basically nothing. Too trapped in a war to be at peace, too damaged to be at war. Abandoned by those who would take the easy route, and a liability to those who stick it out—and thus deserve better. So you see, not only am I better off dead, but the world is better without me in it

This is what brought me to my actual final mission. Not suicide, but a mercy killing. I know how to kill, and I know how to do it so that there is no pain whatsoever. It was quick, and I did not suffer. And above all, now I am free. I feel no more pain. I have no more nightmares or flashbacks or hallucinations. I am no longer constantly depressed or afraid or worried

I am free.

I ask that you be happy for me for that. It is perhaps the best break I could have hoped for. Please accept this and be glad for me.

Daniel Somers

"Feminism is a trade union for ugly women"- Peregrine
06-24-2013 09:57 AM
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KeepMovingForward Offline
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RE: "I Am Sorry That It Has Come to This": A Soldier's Last Words
Very sad and disturbing. The way this guy speaks seems to define the phrase "war is hell," especially after it's over.

However, I'm skeptical that there was nothing to be done to help him. From how he described his mental state, it sounds like he needed help from both an expert psychiatrist as well as a neurologist to figure out exactly what was happening in his brain. Hard to say without more information, but I feel this man's suicide could have been avoided with proper research into his chemical makeup. At the end of the day, the suffering caused by PTSD and similar disorders can still be alleviated substantially with the right combo of therapy and medication.
06-24-2013 11:16 AM
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iknowexactly Offline
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RE: "I Am Sorry That It Has Come to This": A Soldier's Last Words
(06-24-2013 11:16 AM)KeepMovingForward Wrote:  Very sad and disturbing. The way this guy speaks seems to define the phrase "war is hell," especially after it's over.

However, I'm skeptical that there was nothing to be done to help him. From how he described his mental state, it sounds like he needed help from both an expert psychiatrist as well as a neurologist to figure out exactly what was happening in his brain. Hard to say without more information, but I feel this man's suicide could have been avoided with proper research into his chemical makeup. At the end of the day, the suffering caused by PTSD and similar disorders can still be alleviated substantially with the right combo of therapy and medication.

You're right in most cases, but the DEA, rather than going after ruthless Columbians with Uzis, has been doing some suppression of pain med use that has intimidated doctors. Pain is definitely undertreated in some cases. Doctors are cautious and obedient people.

http://www.txmedicallicensinglaw.com/201...n-houston/

They will often protect their license even if there's a 1/1000 chance a guy like this will kill himself.

No one will be accused of malpractice for under-prescribing pain meds to this guy.
(This post was last modified: 06-24-2013 12:38 PM by iknowexactly.)
06-24-2013 11:49 AM
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tiggaling Offline
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RE: "I Am Sorry That It Has Come to This": A Soldier's Last Words
It would have been good if he had gone into more detail!
06-24-2013 12:09 PM
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Architekt Offline
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RE: "I Am Sorry That It Has Come to This": A Soldier's Last Words
Yet still, so many teenagers sign their life away every day
06-24-2013 12:34 PM
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vinman
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RE: "I Am Sorry That It Has Come to This": A Soldier's Last Words
Speaking of war, thats 40, bring back our boys, thats enough blood...

http://www.defence.gov.au/defencenews/st...n/0623.htm
06-24-2013 04:25 PM
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vinman
Samseau Offline
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RE: "I Am Sorry That It Has Come to This": A Soldier's Last Words



Contributor at Return of Kings. You can follow me on Gab.

Be sure to check out the easiest mining program around, FreedomXMR.
06-24-2013 10:06 PM
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Malekhit Offline
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RE: "I Am Sorry That It Has Come to This": A Soldier's Last Words
Very disturbing letter.

PS.
Don't you even get me started on Obama... Warlord with Nobel peace prize...... It's like giving a Hitler medal for saving jews.....
06-24-2013 11:34 PM
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A War You Cannot Win Offline
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RE: "I Am Sorry That It Has Come to This": A Soldier's Last Words
Rest in peace, brother.

I'm proud of my membership to armed forces. I love my brothers in the corps and in the other branches I have worked with but honestly everyday I see more evidence that we have been used, lied to, deceived, and discarded when we're no longer of any use or convenience by the government we have sworn to serve. We do not protect liberty or those who cannot defend themselves, but shadowy government plots and expanded profit margins for the elite.


I was reading a science novel series about a galaxy-wide civil war. One of the characters tearfully exclaimed on some distant battlefield why he rebelled against the space government 'We were taken from our families, molded into weapons to serve in the forever war, in the name of a thousand lies.' The sentence hit me deep. Now I'm stuck wondering if it is a mere coincidence or if the series is supposed to a critique of today's military mission.

Meanwhile over 20 veterans a day kill themselves. What a fucking joke.

It's alright though. I'm happy to bear what damage and scars I have sustained in service knowing that people I've never met who are wealthier than I can even comprehend have expanded their fortunes due to the service of Daniel Somers and others who cannot speak any longer.
(This post was last modified: 06-25-2013 01:28 AM by A War You Cannot Win.)
06-25-2013 01:20 AM
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tiggaling Offline
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RE: "I Am Sorry That It Has Come to This": A Soldier's Last Words
(06-25-2013 01:20 AM)A War You Cannot Win Wrote:  We do not protect liberty or those who cannot defend themselves, but shadowy government plots and expanded profit margins for the elite.

Well said.
06-25-2013 01:48 AM
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Sp5 Offline
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RE: "I Am Sorry That It Has Come to This": A Soldier's Last Words
If you enlist, do so with the knowledge that TPTB do not care and will kick you to the gutter when you're used up.
06-25-2013 08:15 AM
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Samseau Offline
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RE: "I Am Sorry That It Has Come to This": A Soldier's Last Words
(06-25-2013 08:15 AM)Sp5 Wrote:  If you enlist, do so with the knowledge that TPTB do not care and will kick you to the gutter when you're used up.

Yep... and if they need more suckers, they'll just make unemployment rates go up.

They have you by the balls, from the moment you're born.

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06-25-2013 01:57 PM
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