I left the Corps because I had become a reluctant warrior. Many Marines reminded me of gladiators. They had that mysterious quality that allows some men to strap on greaves and a breastplate and wade into the gore. I respected, admired, and emulated them, but I could never be like them. I could kill when killing was called for, and I got hooked on the rush of combat as much as any man did. But I couldn’t make the conscious choice to put myself in that position again and again throughout my professional life. Great Marine commanders, like all great warriors, are able to kill that which they love most — their men. It’s a fundamental law of warfare. Twice I had cheated it. I couldn’t tempt fate again.
Fick, Nathaniel. One Bullet Away: The Making of a Marine Officer. Houghton Mifflin; Boston. 2005. p. 364 (hardcover)