March 17, 2006

Crusaders can’t be quitters.

Filed under: iraq — Alex @ 12:02 pm

(AP) AL-ASAD, Iraq — In the desert chill, on the lonely nighttime roads of Iraq, Joe Johnson looks out over his machine gun and thinks of Justin. It was on Easter morning 2004 that a chaplain and a colonel appeared on Joe and Jan Johnson's Georgia doorstep with the news. Justin, the boy Joe had fished and hunted with, the soldier son who'd gone off to Iraq a month earlier, was suddenly dead at 22, killed by a roadside bomb planted in a Baghdad slum.

Today it's Joe who mans the M-240 atop a Humvee, warily watching the sides of the road, an unlikely Army corporal at 48, a father who came here for revenge, a Christian missionary on a crusade against Islam, and a man who, after six months at war, is ready to go home.

"I shouldn't even have come," he now says. And if he leaves bloody Iraq with no blood on his hands, he says, that's fine, too.

Alex Says:  Awesome attitude, dad.  Make your son proud.  Real credit to our armed forces.  "Waaah.  This place sucks.  I was bloodthirsty, and now I'm hot and covered in sand.  Boo-hoo."

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