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January 17, 2011

One U.S. service member's break-up letter to Afghanistan

The following is an open letter from one US service member to the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan...

Dear Afghanistan,

We need to talk.

Well...we had a good run, but when I said I liked sand, I meant next to the ocean and not in the form of a storm or in my lungs. So I'm going to pre-empt you now on Facebook like the classy girl that I am, and let you know that I'm breaking up with you soon.

Breaking-up It's not you, it's me.

Maybe we can be friends after this, maybe not. I just want to be free to wear my hair down and paint my toenails pink and break into spontaneous song and dance. And dammit I want to wear high heels and a different outfit every day.

I feel like we're getting too serious... and a year is a long time for me as far as relationships go. You're getting a bit clingy and needy, and I just need my space and independence.

My family and friends were pretty hesitant for us to be getting involved to begin with, and I think they're right. I'm just not ready for a relationship with a war-torn country right now. You want more than I'm prepared to give... and I love you but I'm not "in" love with you.

To be completely honest, I haven't been faithful. There was Arizona... and there was New York City. And you just don't quite compete. They offered me dirty martinis and first class flights... you offered me non-potable water that I was warned not to drink, and rocket attacks. They called me pretty and commented on my shoes, you called me "Ma'am" and took me to the same chow hall every single night. Not to mention, the very terrible cell phone and wifi service.

Believe me, there are other fish in the sea... and by fish I mean other bubbly, tiny Asian, doesn't-take-themselves-too-seriously U.S. service members. And by sea I mean... CENTCOM.

There, there...it'll be alright. I'm easy to get over, & just in a different league ;)

- J


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Checkpoint Kabul is written by McClatchy journalists covering Afghanistan and south Asia.

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