I don't read a lot of military blogs, but those that I do all have one thing in common: their authors have demonstrated a sense of professionalism, and a sense of empathy for the civilian populations in the areas where they work. Of these, Sgt. Devore has grown to become a real favorite of mine. His long and detailed posts seem like something more out of a Tom Clancy novel than a blog, and have so much detail and heartfelt feeling in them that one can easily see through his eyes what it is really like being a soldier in Iraq.
One thing in particular I like and respect about Sgt. Devore is that he has demonstrated a real sense of concern towards the Iraqi people around him. All soldiers care about the guys in their unit, but it takes a real sense of humanity to extend that thinking to people on the street, especially when some of those people may resent you. I honestly think if the US Army had a few more guys like Sgt. Devore and a few less guys like Charles Graner, the whole Abu Ghraib fiasco would have never happened, the US Army would have had a much easier ride in Iraq, and they would be respected today by most Iraqis as being level-headed and fair.
Sgt. Devore's best friend was killed by a sniper last week.
Sgt. Devore is a good man, and I really hate when bad things happen to good people. Last week, after Sgt. Devore's friend was shot dead by a sniper, Sgt. Devore was sent off to Qatar to clear his head, and his last post can give you an idea of how well he is taking it:
I curse my life. I cures the fact that I am left behind to remember. Why me? I do not deserve to live. I should have died. Why was I not killed? If I was the sniper I would have shot me. I was in the gun. I was the obvious target. Why not me?
This guy needs some support.
I left Sgt. Devore a nice comment yesterday, and I was glad to see that Hassan, my Iraqi friend in Baghdad, had left Sgt. Devore a comment also. For anyone else reading this, I would personally appreciate it if you click on this link and write something nice to Sgt. Devore also.