For the first time, the Ministry Of Defence has allowed television cameras to follow the recovery and rehabilitation of severely injured soldiers returning from Afghanistan.
Earlier in the week I watched this documentary which follows the journey of two seriously injured soldiers; Andy Allen, a 19-year-old Ranger and Tom Neathway, a 24-year-old Lance Corporal.
It moved me to tears.
We experience first-hand, the true effect of war. The ‘Collateral’ damage and sanitised pictures we usually get on TV, as some form of super PC Game, were stripped bare. Unlike the movies, what we saw here were real people, really, really hurt – blood guts and all.
And their families and loved one’s were there too, helplessly sharing their pain, anguish and journey to recovery. And here was I, a fly on the wall viewer feeling like a voyeur, watching this very intimate and personal journey unfold.
The programme humbled me and changed the way I think about things that personally trouble me and left me with three distinct and clear thoughts.
What impressed me most about both Andy and Tom was their formidable mental strength. They just got on with the job of getting better and back to living their lives. They were incredibly stoic, without an ounce of self pity. I truly hope that they can maintain this because it will make them unstoppable, achieving whatever they want to do in their lives.
They both had a magnificent sense of loyalty and belonging. The Army and their mates were incredibly important to them and they went the extra mile and will I’m sure, continue to do so for either. This was an unswerving loyalty and a quality they should be proud of, as self interest was definitely at the back of the pack.
That any politician even considering taking their country to war should watch this film at least twice and face up to the magnitude of human suffering and misery that their decision to pull the trigger will inevitably unleash upon thousands.