By Major General Mrinal Suman, AVSM, VSM, PhD
According to common perception, soldiers are supposed to be cold-hearted and unsentimental fighters, totally impervious to emotional weaknesses.
The profession of arms is all about management of violence, destruction and death. As it is not easy to muster courage and nerve to kill other human beings, soldiers are trained to acquire a streak of raw ruthlessness and brutality. Consequently, according to common perception, soldiers are supposed to be cold-hearted and unsentimental fighters, totally impervious to emotional weaknesses.
It is just not `soldierly` to cry and shed tears like other mortals. But then as Voltaire said, "Tears are the silent language of grief". Grief is a fundamental sentiment. It spares no one and soldiers are no exception. Soldiers by nature are highly sensitive to the environment and its responses.
However, soldiers do not grieve through wailing, howling, weeping and even sobbing. Their grief finds expression not through tears but through their silent anguish. Here are five triggers that overwhelm soldiers` hearts and make them cringe with pain.
This June 1999 picture shows Army men trying to reach their homes from Kargil, to let their families know that they are safe. Image copyright: AFP. Any unauthorized reproduction prohibited