"If Dad calls, tell him I got too close to being dead but I'm O.K. I was real lucky. I'll write again soon." Army Sgt. Steve Flaherty's mother never received the letters, taken from him by Vietnamese forces when he was killed in action on March 25, 1969.
Those stories you hear about the foreign troops who pillaged and pilfered Iraq, the seat of ancient Mesopotamia -- those stories don't do justice to what we have learned from the tale of Nigel Ely. He's taught us things that only Saddam's buttock could have imparted.
I have this post-apocalyptic image -- that all we have made to endure is trash, permanent mementos of brief appetites, very, very briefly useful, disposed of, then surviving forever. We would do better to make statues in snow and leave nothing.