US News and World Report posted a clip of an unnamed soldier filmed in northeast Afghanistan in which he was shot four times. The video, uploaded to YouTube as part of an ongoing documentation of the war, has been viewed more than 1.3 million times. How did I find out? Well, just after writing bit number 1, I went to refill my coffee and CNN was showing the clip.
This young man was wearing a helmet cam, and returning fire, when he suddenly and repeatedly yells, “I’m hit,” as he was maneuvering to draw fire away from his team, which were pinned down. “The rest of the squad was pinned down by machine gun fire. I didn’t start the video until a few mins into the firefight for obvious reasons. I came out into the open to draw fire so my squad could get to safety,” he explains. Luckily, his body armor and helmet stopped any bullets from getting through.
This, we should watch. This, we should be privy to, and this should be front page news. You want violence, horror, shock, reality? But, it’s not in the Washington Post, or The NY Daily News – who chose to lead with Lindsay Lohan’s hotel spat. It’s not in the NY Times, or even the Huffington Post. In other words, you had to know it happened, or accidently see it like I did, and then go look for it.
This clip and accompanying story should be run daily in every news outlet until we get out of Afghanistan. This is ugliness with a point – that our young people are in a life and death struggle for absolutely no reason.
Nothing can be more important for us to realize, not even the live video of a suicide.