05 April 2012

Mourning the loss of LTC Loftis, USAF Pashtun expert killed in Afghanistan

I'm sharing a sad painful loss related to me by my friend Clark. A little over a month ago, LTC John Loftis was shot in his office in Kabul, Afghanistan. His death struck me deeply, for several reasons. We are just about the same age. In the video below, it was apparent to me what a calm, thoughtful, and dedicated individual he was, one who believes in his mission, but also in a respectful caring approach to others the way a professional should. He was one of the military's most skillful experts in the Pashto language, and Afghan culture. He worked as a public relations officer, and was working on reconstruction teams, side by side with the Afghan police. He left behind a wife and two daughters. He is our modern US military in its best sense, educated, effective, humanitarian, proactive, fearlessly responsible to mission. His death is a great loss to us as a nation and horribly so to his family.

This New York Times video illustrates the man so clearly:


 (images from Together we served)

This war continues. Our neighbors are longing for their loved ones who are far from home. Remember.


  1. It's so much easier to destroy than build. You would think 10 years in we would have more Pashto speakers - perhaps they are in other agencies. What an awesome example of living intently and intensely to protect us from harm and make the world a better place.

    1. 100% agreed. The question came up, how do you get more Pashto and Arabic speakers? How about an incentive: you get paid $300 more per month on deployment if you complete language training. They'd have the program full before two years were up. And that is an infinitesimal fraction of a new jet or even one smart bomb.


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