Exploring the citizen-soldier disconnect at the inaugural Yale Veterans Summit

Air Force ROTC cadet Madeline Skrocki '17 of Calhoun College (left) talks with Deborah Lee James, U.S. secretary of the Air Force, during the Yale Veterans Summit, held April 10–11 on campus. (Photo by Major Jason Bast)
April 13, 2015

When Chris Harnisch was on a plane home after a 14-month deployment in Afghanistan, the flight attendant, noticing his uniform, asked where he was coming from. When he told her, the surprised attendant said, “We still have troops in Afghanistan?”

It was an innocent question, Harnisch told the audience gathered for the inaugural Yale Veterans Summit, but it showed him for the first time “the magnitude and ubiquity of the civilian-military divide.”

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