I could hear the unmistakable sound of explosives in the background as I ran for cover alongside my platoon. But the worst sound one can ever hear are the screams of the brothers with whom you pledged to give your life away. For thousands of us, the thought of ever returning home had become an illusion. We had become immersed into a life of brutality and inevitable pain. I do not remember what kept me going through the long years of violence. What I could recall, was the last time I ever saw Tom, my lifelong friend and military colleague. I remember hearing the fatal whistling blow of the enemy’s missile as it momentarily hung in mid-air.I glanced up to the redden sky, as another whistling noise arose from above the smoke that enclosed me. I held my head up high and my rifle firmly as I had been taught like the MAN I had become.