In 2013, Prince Harry shocked reporters with a candid assessment of the five months he had spent supporting ground troops as an Apache helicopter pilot during his second combat tour in Afghanistan.
In an interview conducted with reporters prior to departing Afghanistan, Harry, then 28 years old, admitted to killing insurgents. “If there’s people trying to do bad stuff to our guys, then we’ll take them out of the game,” he said. “Take a life to save a life.”
That was more than three years ago. Now, Harry, who left the British Army in 2015, admits that he’s still struggling to cope with some of the things he experienced overseas.
“I described it to someone ages ago as one of those slide shows that go through your mind,” Harry recently told Sky News. “If you’ve got a good imagination as well, everything that you see, especially if it’s something that is quite powerful, then that slide is in there.”
Harry was speaking to promote the Invictus Games, a Paralympic sporting event for wounded service members from militaries around the world, which he launched in 2014.
This year’s games begin on May 8 in Orlando. More than 500 men and women from 15 nations will compete in 10 different sporting events, including wheelchair basketball, archery, cycling and powerlifting.
It’s the largest competition of its kind in the world, and former President George W. Bush is an honorary chairman.
It’s clear that Harry’s time in Afghanistan continues to shape the way he perceives himself. Royalty or not, he’s still a combat veteran, albeit an extraordinarily influential one. Of the wounded soldiers competing in the Invictus Games this year, he said:
“You know there are images I’ve been lucky enough not to see, but there have been images that I’ve been unfortunate to see, nothing like some of these guys, but, yes, there is a percentage of me being able to relate to exactly what they go through.”
Benjamin Franklin nailed it when he said, "Fatigue is the best pillow." True story, Benny. There's nothing like pushing your body so far past exhaustion that you'd willingly, even longingly, take a nap on a concrete slab.
Staff Sgt. Daniel Christopher Evans was arrested on Jan. 29, 2018. (Photo courtesy of Wilmington Police Department, North Carolina.)
A special operations Marine is due in court on March 7 after being arrested last year for allegedly assaulting his girlfriend, Task & Purpose has learned.
Staff Sgt. Daniel Christopher Evans was arrested and charged with assault inflicting serious injury on July 29, 2018, according to Jennifer Dandron, a spokeswoman for police in Wilmington, North Carolina. Evans is currently assigned as a Critical Skills Operator with the 2nd Marine Raider Battalion at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, according to the Marine Corps Personnel Locator.
U.S. Army 1st Lt. Elyse Ping Medvigy conducts a call-for-fire during an artillery shoot south of Kandahar Airfield, Afghanistan, Aug. 22, 2014. Medvigy, a fire support officer assigned to the 4th Infantry Division's Company D, 1st Battalion, 12th Infantry Regiment, 4th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, is the first female company fire support officer to serve in an infantry brigade combat team supporting Operation Enduring Freedom. U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Whitney Houston (Photo by U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Whitney Houston)
Following Trump's inauguration, some supporters of ground combat integration assumed he would quickly move to reinstate a ban on women in jobs like the infantry. When this did not happen, advocates breathed a collective sigh of relief, and hundreds of qualified women charted a course in history by entering the newly opened occupational fields.
So earlier this week when the Wall Street Journal published an editorial against women in ground combat by conservative political commentator Heather Mac Donald, the inclination of many ground combat integration supporters was to dismiss it outright. But given Trump's proclivity to make knee jerk policy decisions in response to falling approval ratings and the court's tradition of deference to the military when it comes to policies affecting good order and discipline, it would be unwise to assume the 2016 lifting of the ban on women in ground combat is a done deal.
R. Lee Ermey was laid to rest at Arlington National Cemetery on Friday.
Best known for his iconic role as the Marine Corps drill instructor Gunnery Sgt. Hartman in the war drama Full Metal Jacket, Ermey died April 15, 2018 at age 74 due to complications from pneumonia, Task & Purpose previously reported.
A B-2 Spirit bomber deployed from Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri, and F-22 Raptors from the Hawaii Air National Guard's 154th Wing fly near Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii, during a interoperability training mission Jan. 15, 2019. (U.S. Air Force/Master Sgt. Russ Scalf)
The U.S. Air Force has two of its most elite aircraft — the B-2 Spirit bomber and the F-22 Raptor — training together in the Pacific, reassuring America's allies and sending a warning to strategic competitors and adversaries about the sheer power the U.S. brings to the table.
These stunning photos show the powerful aircraft tearing across the Pacific, where the U.S. has increasingly found itself facing challenges from a rising China.