When the Lord was creating Vietnam Combat Veteran, He was into His 6th day of overtime when an angel appeared.
"You're certainly doing a lot of fiddling around on this one."
And God said, "Have you seen the specs on this order? A Nam Vet has to be able to run 5 miles through the bush with a full pack on, endure with barely any sleep for days, enter tunnels his higher ups wouldn't consider doing, and keep his weapons clean and operable. He has to be able to sit in his hole all night during an attack, hold his buddies as they die, walk point in unfamiliar territory known to be VC infested, and somehow keep his senses alert for danger. He has to be in top physical condition existing on c-rats and very little rest. And he has to have 6 pairs of hands."
The angel shook his head slowly and said, "6 pair of hands....no way."
The Lord says "It's not the hands that are causing me problems. It's the 3 pair of eyes a Nam Vet has to have."
"Is that on the standard model?" asked the angel.
The Lord nodded. "One pair that sees through elephant grass, another pair h ere in the side of his head for his buddies, another pair here in front that can look reassuringly at his bleeding, fellow soldier and say, 'You'll make it' ...when he knows he won't."
"Lord, rest, and work on this tomorrow."
"I can't," said the Lord. "I already have a model that can carry a wounded soldier 1,000 yards during a fire fight, calm the fears of the latest FNG, and feed a family of 4 on a grunts paycheck."
The angel walked around the model and said, "Can it think?"
"You bet," said the Lord. "It can quote much of the Universal Code of Military Justice, recite all his general orders, and engage in a search and destroy mission in less time than it takes for his fellow Americans back home to discuss the morality of the War, and still keep his sense of humor.
The Lord gazed into the future and said, "He will also endure being vilified and spit on when he returns home, rejected and crucified by the very ones he fought for."
Finally, the angel slowly ran his finger across the Vet's cheek, and said, "There's a leak...I told you that you were trying to put too much into this model."
"That's not a leak", said the Lord. "That's a tear."
"What's the tear for?" asked the angel.
"It's for bottled up emotions, for holding fallen soldiers as they die, for commitment to that funny piece of cloth called the American flag, for the terror of living with PTSD for decades after the war, alone with it's demons with no one to care or help."
"You're a genius," said the angel, casting a gaze at the tear.
The lord looked very somber, as if seeing down eternity's distant shores. "I didn't put it there," He said. "A Veteran is someone who, at one point in his life wrote a blank check made payable to 'The United States of America' for an amount of 'up to and including his life.' That is Honor, and there are way too many people in this country who no longer understand it."