War, Public Health, and our Children

This weekend we had the honor of a weekend visit from my brother’s middle son. He is 5. It is already the second time in his young life that his father is away for more than a year, deployed for this Iraq war. He doesn’t really talk about it, but I wanted to cry while he was playing and he said “They sent the very best one in the whole wide world and now he is dead.” It was the first part of the sentence that got to me. What does he know about where his father is? What does he worry about? How much anxiety has he already lived with at this tender age?

Certainly my heart and sometimes more goes out to children more directly impacted by war. There are lots of websites and ways to help those children. I’d be happy to hear of good organizations helping the children of American reservists and veterans, too. Please leave comments.

In the meantime, I’ll check out the book War and Public Health. Its new edition is updated to include chapters on the Iraq War, mental health and establishing a culture of peace.


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