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But who to they subscribe their sacrifice to? The constitution? The president and they swear new every election? The flag and country, but who decides what’s in that’s best interest?
I get your point, and when I was in the service I would ask myself questions like that at funerals for friends. It’s not about the costs one takes, it’s about the privilege to protect those at home. Let’s remove the military name and look at it from a different angle; Cops.
Cops got about everyday protecting what? Why? and they don’t get the benefit of having a well laid out plan of attack for events they have to deal with, every situation for them is very different from the last. Same goes for Firefighters, Medical units, and others. What makes everyone tic?
I don’t think there is a single answer for your question, everyone that serves/served has their own reason for joining the military of their choice, everyone is personal, and it is a very rare time when one will come right out and give a true answer for it. Not because we are brainwashed, hard headed, or “kill-Bots”, but because people sacrifice their own freedoms for reasons that are deeply personal to them.
Is the price you pay worth it? Sure, I can’t sleep at night most days, but when I reflect back on why it was worth it. People are alive because of what I did, that’s what matters. You’ll never get an answer from the dead as to what they feel about dying for their cause, but you can try and understand that when something like this happens, those who died wasn’t thinking about their safety, but was more worried about those around them and the lives they were sent to save. It’s all about conviction I guess, some understand it some don’t, but either way if your time comes you will do what your conviction tells you to.