Perhaps when you were shot at in Korea you were forced to accept what the vast majority of the population has the luxury of not accepting? And it is written all throughout your fiction.
The biggest difference combat made is difficult to describe. A lot of it is fatalism, "I'll fight this thing until it's as good as I can make it. When it is, I'll send it out, reload, and resume firing. I'll keep on doing that as long as I can."
There's only one good thing that comes out of war. It is that the people who fight it are forced to see the lies that others tell them and the lies they tell themselves for what they are. It can be hard on some people – very hard. I wish I could say that it lasted for life; quite often it doesn't.
From An Interview With Gene Wolfe
'How could the Outsider have chosen such a bungler? ...When had he ever offered a single sacrifice, however small, to the Outsider? Never! Not one in his entire life. Yet the Outsider had extended infinite credit to him... Certainly he would never be able to repay the Outsider for the knowledge and the honor, no matter how hard or how long he tried.' (Gene Wolfe, Nightside The Long Sun)