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August 02, 2004



Thank you for the post and for maintaining an important web site.
Most importantly, thank you, sir, for serving our country. You prove that one can be smart and moral at the same time: that used to be a standard but a rarity nowadays.

posted by TopQuark



Truman J. Smith
(Author of "THE WRONG STUFF")
( The Adventures and Misadventures of a WW-II Combat Pilot)
(University of Oklahoma Press)

We have a man on board who has never been an airplane commander, but who
desperately wants to take command of this aircraft, because be believes
he can fly it better, based on his experience of driving a river boat in
combat over 30 years ago.

Well, over 60 years ago, before he was born, I was a bomber pilot in
Europe, filling cemeteries with innocent people in order for him and
others to live in peace. And so it is that I can relate to his problem.
It's called PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder).

To state it simply, it is a madness that comes from the Basic Instinct
of SURVIVAL. The Truth is: Everybody really wants the same thing. The
difference between the Hero and the Villain is in HOW they go about
getting it: Lying and Cheating, or doing it Honorably.

I know about this disability, because I have it and have studied on it
for 60 years and I can relate to this young man's frustration and
desperation to even ally himself with the enemies of this country in
trying to solve the problem. Well, the problem is not out there
someplace, but within each of us --- and each of us has the privilege
and responsibility to make sure we put the most qualified person in the
pilot's seat.

I'm no longer a pilot in command. I have only one vote and I'm just
along for the ride. However, as sure as God made little green apples,
I'll be damned for not trying to stop a madman (such as myself) from
hurting millions of people and putting us into cemeteries, if their is
anyone left to bury us.

Please help all of us.

Truman Smith, Lt. Colonel US Air Force, Ret.. Member, DFC Society


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