Lisa Kott

As Interviewed by Ian Jenson, March 1, 2014
"This war is so much different from other wars because our enemy is less defined. Whoever wins over the locals, wins that area; so itís about showing the locals that we are there to help, not hurt, and that itís better to trust us than the Taliban because they have to choose."
Lisa Kott

Introductory Profile: About Lisa Kott

The person that I interviewed is Lisa Kott. She is my cousin from Montana, and she was an Army nurse for several years. After finishing college, she decided to go and serve in the military, and she became a captain. For several years she worked in the Peace Corps, then she worked as a UN Peace Trooper, and then took a nine-month tour to Afghanistan. During that time she was based in Camp Dwyer, which is near the southern border of Afghanistan, and in an international base near Herat in northern Afghanistan. When she got back, she worked in a hospital in Louisiana before deciding to move to Texas in order to be closer to her family and to resume studying in order to get a nurse practitionerís license. She is now 29 and lives in Austin. She is a very kind, outgoing, down-to-earth person. She is very open about her beliefs but is willing to respect other peopleís ideas and opinions.

In the interview we covered several major issues, the first of which is discrimination in the Army. She discussed that since most of the command were men, she had to really stand her ground to get them to listen to her. She also talked about how she was held back because of her young age, because everyone wanted to protect her and keep her out of harmís way. Another issue she discussed was the treatment of women in Afghanistan. She talked about several of her patients who had illegally learned to read, and about how bright they were if you could get them alone. The last major issue we talked about was the citizens of Afghanistanís view of America. It was eye-opening to hear about the level of hatred against Americans for the sole reason that they are Americans. Overall there was a fairly serious and grave tone about the issues in Afghanistan, but she expressed her hopes about what may happen there. Overall this was a very interesting experience for me, because a lot of questions I didnít even know I had were answered, and I now have a much better idea of the problems in Afghanistan and a better understanding of the country as a whole.