Invisible wounds

For veterans, the war goes on
We hear about the U.S troops killed in Iraq, and we sometimes see their faces on the TV screen or staring out at us from the newspaper. The number of dead stands at about 1,442. There is a second statistic: 10,770 troops have been injured. For many of them, their bodies are terribly damaged and disfigured, and they will never be the same.

There’s another category of wounded that is almost always ignored and neglected. We’ll never see this statistic, but I am certain these wounded will number in the tens of thousands before the war is over. These men and women may look fine. They may have no burn scars, gunshot holes or missing limbs—no visible evidence that they’ve been in combat. Yet their lives are as irreversibly damaged and debilitated as if they’d lost arms, legs or sight. Their wounds are emotional and spiritual, and they have left deep scars.


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