In Afghanistan, American Troops Patrol the Same Routes Their Fathers Did

Nineteen years ago last week the United States invaded Afghanistan, a country halfway around the world that few in America had heard of and even fewer knew anything about. Today, thousands of U.S. soldiers and many more private military contractors continue to pace and patrol exactly the same routes as their predecessors did in 2001, fighting a seemingly endless and pointless conflict that both the American and Afghan public have long since soured on.

One example of this is Master Sgt. Trevor deBoer, deployed to the country three times with the 20th Special Forces Group. “When we started this, people asked why I was going, and my response was, ‘So my sons don’t have to fight this war,’” deBoer told military news site Stars and Stripes.

The story was another case of life imitating art, as it bore an eerie resemblance to a three-year-old article in the satire outlet The Onion, called “Soldier Excited To Take Over Father’s Old Afghanistan Patrol Route.” In it, a fictional interviewee claims that “It’s just so incredible that I’ll soon be walking the very same footpath as my old man, securing the perimeter of Camp Chapman in Khost Province just like he did so many years ago,” expressing his pride in taking flak from the same angry rebel groups and dodging IEDs on the same deserted roads. But reality is increasingly driving satirists out of a job these days.

Continuing to send fathers and sons off to fight in foreign lands will mean fewer resources at home.

mintpressnews In Afghanistan, American Troops Patrol the Same Routes Their Fathers Did