Soul Sacrifice

Now it is said that Eddie Routh, the Semper Fi guy accused of back-shooting Super Sniper Seal back-shooter Chris Kyle, arrived shortly thereafter at the home of his sister, behind the wheel of Kyle’s black Ford truck; Routh informed her he had “traded his soul for a new truck.”

He stated that he was required to kill both Kyle and Chad Littlefield because “he couldn’t in the bagtrust them.” So, “he killed them before they could kill them.”

All three men had been wandering around with weapons at a Texas gun range. Reports are that Kyle and Littlefield had taken Routh to the gun range so he could bang-bang shoot-shoot as a form of “therapy.”

Routh had not been doing well for some time. A veteran of Operation Iraqi Fiefdom, Routh in June of 2012 was identified by his mother as the suspect in a burglary of her home in which the thief absconded with nine bottles of pills. In September of 2012, Routh was hospitalized after he threatened to kill himself and his family. Responding law-enforcement officers found him “shoeless and smelling of booze”; Routh stated “he was hurting and that his family does not understand what he has been through.”

On January 19, Routh was again hospitalized, this time after a Dallas woman told police she feared for his safety. He was released on January 24, soon returned, then released again, this time on January 29. It is said that Routh was released from this latest hospital-stay, against his family’s wishes, four days before he went out on the range with Kyle and Littlefield.

Kyle was an advocate of placing guns in the hands of troubled veterans.

In his book, Kyle wrote that gun-range therapy was meant to be easygoing and fun, with teasing, jokes and bonding over beers and stories.

“What wounded veterans don’t need is sympathy,” Kyle wrote. “They need to be treated like the men they are: equals, heroes, and people who still have tremendous value for society. If you want to help them, start there. In a funny way, bustin’ back and forth shows more respect than asking ‘Are you OK?’ in a sickly sweet voice.”

Oh yes. Heaven forbid that one inquire whether another human being is okay. Better to give them a beer, and a gun.

In a response to this piece, red reader roger recently revealed here that he almost became, like Kyle, a sniper.

I’m glad to see the article. It’s struck a personal theme for me. You see, they wanted me to be a sniper in vietnam. I would have done it, too. But a soon-to-retire active us army veteran of WW2 and Korea combat took me aside and, choosing his words cautiously, set me straight on that possible future. He’s gone now. I am forever in his debt. They say that the souls of the people you kill all go into a bag. A bag you’ll have to drag along throughout your life – and maybe for eternity. Evidently there were too many in Kyle’s bag. Garrulous souls, perhaps, and they wanted Kyle to join them in their whited sepulchers.

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4 Responses to “Soul Sacrifice”


  1. 1 roger February 10, 2013 at 11:59 am

    I like the poetic and metaphysical style – and I am sure they have value, too. So excuse me, please, when I speak directly and frankly. Fritz (I used to work with him for the Army) was Hitler Youth’d and the sent East – to stem the Soviet advance. He was maybe 16. When I knew him, in the mid 1990’s, the mere phrase “Russian front” always elicited a ritual. He’d hunt ’round in his pockets with shaking hands. Pockets where he always kept food and hard candy. Then he’d pop a candy in his mouth and bang it against his poor old teeth until it was gone. Combat fatigue. It never ends. His name really was Fritz, too. He came of age in a brutal Soviet POW camp. And there was Frank. He had the awful luck to be stationed in the Philippines in ’41 on an “S-Boat” (at that time an obsolete class of US Navy submarine). The Imperial Japanese Navy gave them 158 depth charges (if memory serves yet). Obviously they made it back – but the boat was scrap, and so were the men. All you had to say, in 1998, was “submarine”, and Frank did exactly what Fritz did, shaking hands and rattling hard candy and all. It’s hard to define – but the people who have seen combat fatigue can spot it across the room. Combat – that’s what they call it. Being a target and being tortured might be closer to the truth. Never mind what they say – most soldiers are simply meat on the hook, dangled in front of bombers or artillery. They’re bait. And that’s precisely how their lordships think of all of us. Both Fritz and Frank did alright. They had solid union jobs and a support network, a sense of belonging – they coped. But without the near-formula “treatment” of good job and family…and with plenty of guns to keep them warm (it was their fetish in war and so shall it be forever, clutch’d to the breast like a doll) and lots of pills… Of course the obvious moral course is to stop torturing the “meat” and find worthwhile and engaging work for the poor sods. Fat chance.

  2. 2 Alexa February 18, 2013 at 5:41 pm

    how is it “therapy” to pack a loaded piece into the hands of an emotionally fragile soul?

  3. 3 blog.maehongsonlife.com April 25, 2013 at 10:48 pm

    What’s up, constantly i used to check website posts here early in the morning, because i enjoy to gain knowledge of more and more.


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