Listen: New England Soldier Reflects On Afghan 'Moment Of Shock'06:36

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The U.S. Air Force is calling up some 500 Massachusetts reservists to active duty as part of the troop surge in Afghanistan. The Westover Air Reserve Base in Chicopee says the reservists leave in April.

In December, President Obama sent an additional 30,000 troops to Afghanistan — a strategy Capt. Craig Mullaney says is the right one. A Rhode Island native, Mullaney is a former Rhodes Scholar, a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point and the U.S. Army's elite Ranger School. He now works for the Pentagon.

When Mullaney served in the Army's 10th Mountain Division in 2003, one of his soldiers, 19-year-old Evan O'Neill, of Haverhill, was killed in a firefight in Afghanistan. The incident profoundly affected Mullaney and made him question his military training. The scene features prominently in his book, "The Unforgiving Minute: A Soldier's Education."

Recently, Mullaney joined WBUR to discuss his military experience and to reflect on the moment O'Neill was killed.

This program aired on March 16, 2010.

Deborah Becker Twitter Host/Reporter
Deborah Becker is a senior correspondent and host at WBUR. Her reporting focuses on mental health, criminal justice and education.