Thanks all, it was my honor to serve my country when she needed me.
Really, it requires a mental shift in the understanding of how we wage war. The current wars are not conventional warfare, they are extremely unconventional, and the key to winning them is based in a sound counter-insurgency mindset. If you want to understand what we are doing better, read "The three pillars of counter-insurgency" stuff, that was developed by Dr. Kilcullen.
It's not WW2 where we have beaches to storm and a clear, uniformed enemy anymore. It makes more sense to provide medical services to local children, and get the locals on our side, because they know who the enemy is, than get frustrated, and destroy the whole village, since we can not find the enemy.
And yes, counter-insurgency is about as frustrating as it sounds, especially to grunts.
Thanks for your service, buckeye. Thanks very much for your insight...
I'm one who would sooner see all our men at home, but the blood and treasure we have left there makes that an inadequate answer in and of itself... I guess, in the end, I hope we can give the people a fighting chance to choose the gov't they want, and if it's not our kind of democracy, so be it... All a man wants is the freedom to choose, and to be left alone with his choices. If he needs help changing things, a friend will give that help.
"Nation building" is rarely ever on that personal a level though.