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What haunts combat vets? Read my Forbes piece: "Veterans' Ghosts"

By Michael Fumento

Many of my feelings about what combat was like were difficult to describe but one was impossible until I read this quote from a Vietnam vet:

Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class (Sea, Air, and Land) Michael Monsoor in combat in Ramadi, 2006.

Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class (Sea, Air, and Land) Michael Monsoor in combat in Ramadi, 2006

There's a love relationship that is nurtured in combat because the man next you - you're depending on him for the most important thing you have, your life, and if he lets you down you're either maimed or killed. If you make a mistake the same thing happens to him, so the bond of trust has to be extremely close; and I'd say this bond is stronger than almost anything, with the exception of parent and child. It's a hell of a lot stronger than man and wife - your life is in his hands, you trust that person with the most valuable thing you have.

And what happens when that person dies, whether in your presence or later on? You may end up believing in ghosts, like the ghost of Michael Monsoor. Here's my story of the first Navy SEAL to win the Medal of Honor in Iraq.

November 11, 2009 09:55 PM  ·  Military