No journalist has reckoned with the psychology of war as intimately as David Finkel. In The Good Soldiers, his bestselling account from the front lines of Baghdad, Finkel shadowed the men of the 2-16 Infantry Battalion as they carried out the infamous surge, a grueling fifteen-month tour that changed all of them forever. Now Finkel has followed many of those same men as they've returned home and struggled to reintegrate - both into their family lives and into American society at large.
In the ironically named Thank You for Your Service, Finkel writes with tremendous compassion not just about the soldiers but about their wives and children. Where do soldiers belong after their homecoming? Is it possible, or even reasonable, to expect them to rejoin their communities as if nothing has happened? And in moments of hardship, who are soldiers expected to turn to if they feel alienated by the world they once lived in? These are the questions Finkel faces as he revisits the brave but shaken men of the 2-16.
More than a work of journalism, Thank You for Your Service is an act of understanding - shocking but always riveting, unflinching but deeply humane, it takes us inside the heads of those who must live the rest of their lives with the chilling realities of war.
David Finkel maintains his objective distance as a professional journalist – this isn't a polemic against war or the way the United States cares for its veterans - but there really isn't much good news to report in this ongoing story. It is, however, a very important book that helps readers understand the human cost of war, and the ongoing problems our returning soldiers and their families face. (Reviewed by Kim Kovacs).
Fortune The Good Soldiers by David Finkel is the most honest, most painful, and most brilliantly rendered account of modern war I’ve ever read.
Starred Review. Told in crisp, unsentimental prose and supplemented with excerpts from soldiers' diaries, medical reports, e-mails, and text messages, their stories give new meaning to the costs of service.
Starred Review. The truly astonishing aspect of Finkel's work is that he remains completely absent from his reportage; he is still embedded. A real war story with a jarring but critical message for the American people.
Katherine Boo, National Book Award–winning author of Behind the Beautiful Forevers
I'm urging everyone I know to give Thank You for Your Service just a few pages, a few minutes out of their busy lives. The families honored in this urgent, important book will take it from there.
Ben Fountain, author of Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk, winner of the National Book Critics' Circle Award and finalist for the National Book Award Thank You for Your Service is one of the best and truest books I have ever read. David Finkel cuts through all the spin, the excuses, the blowhard politics and mind-deadening metrics to discover the cost of war for the soldiers who fight it and the families they come home to.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) are being called the "signature injuries" of the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars. These conditions are closely related, but are, in fact, vastly different.
PTSD is a psychological response to a traumatic event. While most associate the term with military combat, any overwhelming life experience can trigger it, especially if the event feels unpredictable or uncontrollable. It can affect anyone who experiences, witnesses, or cleans up after a catastrophe. Those with PTSD most often see symptoms develop soon after an event, but sometimes it can take weeks, months or years before they occur. People with PTSD find their symptoms do not decrease and may even get worse over time. Symptoms of PTSD include reliving the event, particularly through nightmares or flashbacks; avoiding situations that remind the person of the event; negative changes in beliefs and feelings; and/or feeling keyed up. It may also be accompanied by feelings of hopelessness, shame, or despair; depression or anxiety; drinking or drug problems;...
Michael Weisskopf, a journalist, was riding through Baghdad with a US Army patrol when they were attacked and his hand was destoyed by a grenade. This book is the story of his treatment and rehabilitation as an amputee, and the stories of the three soldiers who recovered alongside him.
A Man Called Intrepid author dies aged 89(Dec 03 2013) William Stevenson, a journalist and author who drew on his close ties with intelligence sources to write two best-selling books in the 1970s, A Man Called...