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Iraq Vets: We’re Watching Everything We Fought For Fall Apart

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NORTH TEXAS (CBSDFW.COM) – A decade ago, a generation of soldiers thought they were repairing Iraq. Now they’re expressing confusion and anger as they watch everything they fought for fall apart. CBS 11 News talked to some of those soldiers.

At his son’s baseball game in Keller, Zach Briseno was thinking about the place where he lost his legs. “We spent all these countless hours, money, lives, [and] for what?” he asked.

Outside a friends store in Richardson, Mickey Mutchler was thinking about where he lost his friends. “The stuff that is happening right now, it hurts a lot,” he said.

Those two Iraq war veterans, and others CBS 11 talked, all said the same thing – they did their job the best they could.

While their efforts were not in vain, they’re upset that the work Americans died for may be coming undone — even though a part of them always knew that it might.

“We were always told, but the guys we were training – the Hillah SWAT, that as soon as we left there was going to be a civil war,” one veteran said.

After a decade of war and more than 4,000 lives lost, they’re ready to let Iraq figure things out on its own. But then their sense of duty also has them wanting to go back, finish the fight, so the next generation doesn’t have to.

Talking about his son Briseno said, “If he says, ‘hey I want to join the Marines,’ more power to ya. I’m going to support you. But, I don’t want him to be in that position if we could’ve taken care of it now.”

There was a very real sense of frustration coming from the veterans, especially as they talked about seeing cities, even streets they once fought on and controlled, now in the middle of chaos and fighting again.

(©2014 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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