"When I arrived back in the States, everybody wanted to talk with me about Afghanistan. It was very difficult for me, even to hear the name; I just wanted to hide somewhere private and cry. I couldn't really understand why that was for a while. But I think I've come to realize that here in the West, people's opinions about the region, its people and the war have really congealed into this sickening sort of knee-jerk bring-the-troops-home or these-colors-don't-run blather that ignores the humanity of everyone involved. I think it's very easy to ignore people when we don't want to genuinely confront the difficult questions that come with acknowledging their existence. It's easy, but it's wrong. I don't want to tell people what to think about this war, whether it's good or evil — that would be an arrogant presumption on my part and I've learned from Afghanistan that nothing is so unambiguous — but I want them to think of the broader implications for humanity in their considerations of where we should go from here. We can't always avoid making mistakes but we can at least avoid being uninformed. And that means more than reading the news. It means understanding the people."