I was an Airborne medic in Afghanistan. I didn't have to shoot anyone, just clean up the messes afterward. I told them what we were doing (our military occupying their country) was wrong. Today I'm slightly more enlightened and would say counterproductive. They said I had a personality disorder and kicked me out.
They backdated my separation orders and I outprocessed in one week. When I initially returned from deployment, I was required to go to a follow up interview with the psychologist based on my diagnosis. She asked all the questions that told to me that they already knew what kinds of problems soldiers were going to have. She checked off the boxes and I got no treatment.
I got an honorable discharge but no disability because I it was classified as a temporary disability. I was too screwed up to continue to serve but not screwed up enough to get any help. I don't care. I don't ever want any help from the government again.
If you define war as state sponsored lethal aggression, it's never justifiable if you subscribe to the Christian (American) notion of Just War Theory. Self defense of private property can be justified but that's it. No American war has ever fallen into that category - not the Civil War (the war to preserve the exploitive tax structure of the North) and not even the American Revolution (first war of succession). Even those wars were about business interests of the few. One of the major battles of the American Revolution was even Americans against Americans.
No soldier I know considers himself a hero. Ask any "hero" and you'll hear they were just doing their job or doing what any person would have. They have the same fear reactions as everyone else. It doesn't make you a hero to have a Pavlovian response that enables you to shoot someone. The month after I got home, there was a gathering I was attending where they asked all the veterans to stand up. I was mostly ashamed of what we'd been doing so I wouldn't stand with the others. I felt stupid for having been tricked into thinking we were protecting our country.
We have no idea of the full costs of war. The government usually does a good job of hiding that. If enough people had any clue, it would be over tomorrow. Did you know they stopped publishing figures for the money supply because the FED is bankrupting us all to finance this war? The State Department also stopped publishing figures on terror attacks around the world because our war on terror is making everything significantly worse. Their answer is that we haven't been attacked on our soil. But then behind closed doors they hope we will so they can continue to convince us we need them.
If we all realized the war on terror was a hoax, we'd just find another reason to go to war and let government continue "protect" us. Our enlightened European friends are giving up any civil rights they have left in the name of preventing terror or global warming. I only point that out in case someone thinks that Europe or anywhere else has all the answers. We're all struggling together in our own ways. Blaming one country or president doesn't help. Kerry would have kept us in Iraq too and Hilary is planning to if she wins.
Scariest words in the English language: "I'm from the government. I'm here to help you."