Artist / Writer: Camille McMennamin

The war in Afghanistan.
14 bloody years so far. 
Sparked by the horrific events of 9/11,
it is the longest war in American history. 
Our forces have fought. 
Been tragic victims of IEDs.
Since 2001, 6,828 American heroes have died here.
Imagine. They were volunteers.
Patriotic young people dedicated to preserving our freedom.
In such a primitive place! 
Dangerous terrain. Bleak, bombed out villages.
Chaos. Illiteracy. Cruelty. Civil war.
Roughly 20% of this tribal country still remains in the hands of the Taliban. 
Men who actually oppose education for boys and girls. 
Who burn down schools, kill students and teachers.
Who even use chemical warfare.
Who oppress women beyond our comprehension. 
Who publicly beheaded Daniel Pearl.
Now, there is ISIS. An unheard-of evil slaughtering Christians, Jews and gays.
Who kidnap and sell young girls and women.
Now, over 8,500 American troops who were scheduled to depart this primitive civil war zone at the end of 2016 will remain into 2017.
To you, we say a profoundly sincere, thank you. 
Thank you for your unbelievably brave service.