If you ever wish to gain insider's look at the war in Afghanistan, look no further than Sebastian Junger's "War." After being embedded with a single platoon for 15 months, Junger came out of the experience with detailed stories of firefights and life in Afghanistan's Korengal Valley. Beyond his vivid depictions, Junger goes into the effects of war on the platoon members' military and civilian lives. Filled with the adrenaline rush of war and the heartbreak of attempting to adjust to civilian life, the author brings the reader into understanding as to what is happening on the inside of the complicated conflict.
"War" is not just another military account where author attempts to make readers "feel combatants' pain." The book is an essential volume in history for its in-depth examination of war's psychological impact. Junger goes above and beyond in his reporting to study the human mind in situations where extraordinary comradeship displaces individual survival. The phrase "we all go down together" couldn't be more true when Junger of these braves souls. With an armload of research, Junger argues that it is only the human who possesses the character traits of "sacrifice" and "courage." One never sees other species sacrificing for one another because they do not have humans' communication skills.
With so much of popular culture and even our own hectic lives occupying so much of our time, I highly recommend picking up a copy of this book to get a real sense of what much of America's military experiences in this region.
I'm excited about seeing Junger's documentary Restrepo. I'm curious to see if this is going to be a work that stands on its own or if it will be a "companion doc" which mirrors the book.