James Fitzgerald, 34, was a sergeant in the Army’s 101st Airborne Division in Afghanistan from May 2010 to November 2010, when he was wounded in a firefight with terrorists in Kunar Province. The Brooklynite, now deputy director of NYC Veterans Alliance, spoke to The Post’s Eileen AJ Connelly on the US-Taliban deal.
My military journey began in 2005. It was a time at which the country was calling, and I signed up at the age of 19. I wanted to deploy.
I deployed to Iraq in 2007, and saw combat there over 15 months. It was one of those experiences that opened my eyes to foreign affairs and the US role in the world.
I transferred to the 101st Airborne in 2009, and deployed to Afghanistan in May 2010, on mission in the Kunar Province.
Now we’re finally signing a peace arrangement with the Taliban.
This is a step in the right direction, and will help to close a chapter that has long needed to be written. I say that as a veteran and someone who has been in consultation with the military community.
A military solution is not what is needed there now. This is more of a diplomatic situation. This peace agreement is in the best interests of the Taliban, the Afghan government and the US government. It’s in everyone’s interest to uphold the stipulations of this deal.
I am in support of the Afghan people, and I’m in support of the men and women that wear the uniform in defense of our country. That is what the peace deal is for, and that’s where the focus should be. I think it’s going to be a welcome and positive maneuver.
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