U.S. Marine Crops photo by Cpl. Melanye Martinez

An elephant

Serving in the Indian military is an adventure, even if you end up working in the chow hall. Earlier this week, a video surfaced of an elephant wandering through the dining facility, much to the chagrin of the local troops.

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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.

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And no one knows that better than military service members and we have the pictures to prove it.

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Inbal Abergil, JOHNSON, 2017

Photographer Inbal Abergil remembers her confusion the first time a friend invited her to the beach for Memorial Day, shortly after she immigrated to the U.S. in 2009. “I said, ‘But we’ll be going to ceremonies right? To pay our respects?’”

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“He’s either going down as the best president ever, or the worst president ever,” the artist Jon McNaughton was saying in mid April over a breakfast of buttermilk pancakes at a cafe in downtown Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

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Photo courtesy of Danny Shervin

Danny Shervin was in college, drinking and playing with gunpowder as he and his friends tried to make miniature rockets and explosives, when a bunch of the incendiary grains spilled on their linoleum kitchen table.

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Brad Hardy photo.

War is destructive in nature, obviously. For Prussian military theorist Carl von Clausewitz, “destruction of an enemy’s armed forces is the means to the end…[and] the only means of destroying the enemy's armed force is by combat….” The timelessness of destruction is grounded in Army doctrine of the offensive, “to defeat, destroy, or neutralize the enemy force” with an aim to take or maintain the initiative in operations. Destruction of two cities proved critical to ending the Second World War, but left a lasting wound in Japan and set the tone for the Cold War arms race. Yet in many cases, destruction can be a source of renewal despite the scars it leaves behind. A nation often uses the fragments that war creates to build cultural artifacts that not only reflect, but look forward.

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