Letters to the Editor

Tuesday, Mar 19 2013 11:00 PM

Maybe we should all put ourselves in Jara's shoes

By The Bakersfield Californian

Thank you for reprinting the Los Angeles Times article about Fernando Jara ("From student to CIA spy, and back again," March 19). I'm glad he talked about his service to our country during the war on terror. Jara is a hero and I wish that he could march with us in our Veterans Day parade. Our national security depends upon many nameless, faceless people who support our military, counterterrorism and political operations worldwide. Credible human intelligence is usually gained at great risk. Thank you, Mr. Jara.

I can only imagine being alone in a different and virally hostile culture, with no buddies at my back or to hang out with. I never had to break bread with our enemies, hurt my friends and not know who is which. Jara was working with knowledge that one slip of the tongue or a mannerism could lead to certain death. Maybe we should all try to imagine that for a while.

Many of those of us who have served in foreign locations have participated in operations and taken risks that cause ongoing pain, angst and some regret. These adventures also come with a stark awareness of the complexity of the world, its people and history. The experience makes it impossible to see things like a simpleton ever again. Time in the crucible will either destroy or strengthen us. I'm glad Jara made it home again. The Lord heals all wounds with love, time and prayer; and brings peace. Obviously, Jara and his wife, Leticia, know this too. I'm sure that Jara will be known as a wise and kind pastor for years to come.

Jon Carrithers

Bakersfield

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