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PDF µ BOOK What It Is Like to Go to War é DCMDIRECT Á [PDF / Epub] ☉ What It Is Like to Go to War ❤ Karl Marlantes – Dcmdirect.co.uk From the author of the New York Times bestseller Matterhorn this is a powerful nonfiction book about the experience of combat and how inadeuately we prepare our young meFrom the author of the New York Times bestseller Matterhorn this is a powerful nonfiction book about the experience of combat and how inadeuately we prepare our young men and women for warWar is as old as humankind but in the past warriors were prepared for battle by ritual religion and literature which also helped bring them home In a compelling narrative Marlantes weaves riveting I am of the age where I could very well have been a veteran of the Vietnam War Or I could have died there But I was spared that first by student deferments and then the timeliness of the Paris Peace Talks However I know and have known many men who fought there On the surface they seem fine Their silence about their experiences is uniform Yet I know one man who cannot stand to be touched He has an exaggerated startle response at the slightest contact And a good lady friend had a lengthy relationship with another veteran of that war That ended after too many nights shattered by his night terrors and on than one occasion his choking her believing he was engaged in hand to hand combatMy Uncle celebrated his 21st birthday at Hickham Field on December 7 1941 During his lifetime he never spoke of that morning Island hopping across the Pacific his only story regarding New Guinea was having been in the same unit as Mario Lanza He didn't like him Crude vulgar he described himBut if you want to know what it is like to go to war Karl Marlantes will tell you He leaves no doubt as to what it is likeThe briefest biography of Karl Marlantes immediately informs the reader his books will not be ordinary fare A National Merit Scholar Marlantes attended Yale University He attended Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar interrupted by his service in Vietnam as a young Lieutenant There he was awarded the Bronze Star the Navy Cross and twelve Air Medals Marlantes earned the right to be called a warrior and to educate those who have never been to war what it means to be oneMarlantes battled thirty years to achieve publication of his novel Matterhorn in 2010 Now Marlantes has followed up his novel with a memoir on his experiences in Vietnam and his opinions on how young men sent into war are done so without the necessary education to understand what they will experience and without the appropriate services necessary to reintegrate them into civilian lifeWhat it is Like to Go to War is a hard hitting portrait of the experience of war and its effect on the human psyche When an author of Marlantes' stature rubs elbows with Joseph Campbell and Robert Bly the end result is an elouent articulate and psychologically astute punch to the gutGenerations ago young men were sent to war by old men who had forgotten what it was like That is no longer the case Our military has grown successively younger No longer do green young men have the benefit of older career non coms and officers who have fought in previous wars Nor have the vast majority of our nation's leaders had actual combat experience The graying Master Sergeant portrayed by Sam Elliott in We Were Soldiers is fast becoming a thing of the pastMarlantes expresses disdain for congressional combat junkets where representatives never see the results of actual combat Their experience is one of calm and uiet conducted to assure their constituency that all things are under control and there is nothing to worry aboutInterlaced with Marlantes' personal experiences are freuent references to classic military uotations and writings that address the essence of what it is like to go to war Here Marlantes shows us ancient cultural examples including the Celtic mythos surrounding Cuchulain examples of the Code of Bushido and some pointed uotations from General Patton addressing the importance of the principles of loyalty flowing from the top of leadership down to the enlisted man being important than its flow in the opposite directionMarlantes is merciless in his exposure of lying in the military world for the protection of career reputation and personal aggrandizement His primary example centered on the false importance of body counts during the Vietnam War Marlantes cheered Schwarzkopf when that General indicated the number of Republican Guard destroyed was irrelevant that what mattered what who gave in first In the end that is what mattersToday unless we have family members stationed in a hot spot that we have troops engaged in military operations causes us little concern Marlantes reminds us Warriors deal with death They take life away from others This is normally the role of GodThe Marine Corps taught me how to kill but it didn't teach me how to deal with the killingIt is impossible to read Marlantes' account without realizing that our young men who have returned from Ira and who have yet to return from Afghanistan will not be the same young men we knew when they first went there As they have served to ostensibly protect us in turn we must now see that we acknowledge their return and welcome them home with the necessary services to lead the semblance of a normal life away from the sound of the guns

Karl Marlantes ´ What It Is Like to Go to War EPUB

Accounts of his combat experiences with thoughtful analysis self examination and his readings from Homer to the Mahabharata to Jung He talks frankly about how he is haunted by the face of the young North Vietnamese soldier he killed at close uarters and how he finally finds a way to make peace with his past Marlantes discusses the daily contradictions that warriors face in the grind I first encountered Karl Marlantes while watching Ken Burns’ documentary The Vietnam War I was impressed by what he had to say and after reading What It Is Like To Go To War I can see that my first impression of him was the right oneThis is a fascinating book an odd but effective blend of memoir and carefully thought out recommendations for helping soldiers to come to terms with the nature of their profession and the killing it entails and reintegrate with their societies when they return from warSometimes this mix of recollection and recommendation jars a little but in the main this is a very interesting read Marlantes writes well and vividly bringing the fear the pain the tension and the exhilaration of war to life Yes – I did mean to write exhilaration Marlantes spends some time exploring the seductive life defining excitement of combatAs Marlantes outlines when he was at war he was a young man in his early 20s with a platoon of heavily armed men who would follow his every order a brace of machine gunners and the industrial might of the United States war machine behind him only a radio call away With a radio call he could order a hilltop pounded to dust by artillery a village napalmed by air support or an enemy bunker shattered by the mighty guns of offshore naval ships As a lifetime civilian I can only imagine the sense of power and importance this could bestow upon a young manAlong with this was the ever present threat of death the utterly focused flow state of infantry fighting and the euphoria of coming out of combat both victorious and alive War may be hell but Marlantes notes there are aspects of it that soldiers miss feelings and experiences that they can never replicate in their civilian lives The reality of this exhilaration and its addictive destructive nature is something not often discussed by soldiers or those treating them for post combat issues and Marlantes argues that this along with other aspects of soldiering must be recognised and discussed to help warriors come to terms with their experiencesMarlantes argues for a strongly spiritual approach to assisting soldiers beginning from their enlistment and continuing through their service and beyond into civilian life His approach seem to me to be a soundly rational one – realistically discussing the warrior experience between soldiers setting up support systems in the military to assist soldiers in dealing with their role as dispensers of death and to help them process the deaths of their comrades He draws on rites of passage present in many societies around the world seeing a role for ritual commemoration and new traditions that could not only heal soldiers after their service but help them be better ethical warriors while they are in uniformI suspect that Marlantes and I wouldn’t see eye to eye on politics and I don’t agree with all the positions he puts forward in this book particularly around male and female societal roles I also tend towards the less spiritual than he does and he focuses fairly heavily on that aspect of preparation and healingHowever his overall stance is a well considered one hard earned through blood pain and decades of post traumatic stress Marlantes unlike the many armchair generals in politics both in the US and here in Australia knows very well what trite phrases such as ‘boots on the ground’ ‘surgical strikes’ and ‘collateral damage’ mean He has seen the heaped broken bodies heard the screams of men whose faces have been torn off by bombs and mourned both his cruelly killed young comrades and the enemy soldiers he personally inflicted death upon His bitter experience and his considered thoughtful approach provides both engaging reading and some important contributions to the way that war veterans are helped to deal with their traumatic experiences and effectively reintegrate into civilian life after they put down their riflesI can only hope that both politicians and military brass read this book and for the sake of both our soldiers and the people they are sent to fight that they take up some of its suggestions

DOC ✓ What It Is Like to Go to War ´ Karl Marlantes

What It Is Like to Go to WarOf war where each battle reuires them to take life or spare life and where they enter a state he likens to the fervor of religious ecstasyJust as Matterhorn is already being acclaimed as a classic of war literature What It Is Like To Go To War is set to become reuired reading for anyone soldier or civilian interested in this visceral and all too essential part of the human experien After the warrior returns home from the initiation of combat he becomes a member of “The Club” of combat veterans It has always been a club with its own secrets and its own and societally imposed rules of silence Traditionally it has been a club tied in with the mystery of gender because being a warrior was tied in with manhood This ancient mystery combined with the silence forms an intriguing and powerful combination for attracting future members particularly boys You don’t join this club; you can only be initiated into it This book is complicated and thought provoking Karl Marlantes says “This book is my song Each and every one of us veterans must have a song to sing about our war before we can walk back in the community without everyone uaking behind the walls” Karl Marlantes is macho He calls it “hyper masculine warrior energy” He lets you know that right off It’s the macho guys in Kill Anything That Moves who rape the young girls manhandle the civilians and kill the babies I don’t think I like macho Marlantes much But he does know how to write about learning to be spiritual in Marine Boot Camp I am still not impressed God told Abraham to sacrifice his son Isaac And stupid Abraham was going to do it I am not much in favor of being spiritual if it means sacrificing Isaac I have been on another streak of Vietnam books I don’t seem to be able to stop fighting that war I recommend Loon A Marine Story A Rumor of War and Kill Anything that Moves How did you feel about killing Mr Marlantes? My feeling? I was elated I shouted to the team “We got Chrispy Critters all over the hill” If back then I was who I am today I would have felt differently There would have been no elation But back then I was just like the battalion staff that cheered our victory on the hill I had identified with the reconnaissance team whose lives were very much in doubt Psychologically I had become identified with the threatened group and the advancing enemy was no longer human like “us” I didn’t kill people sons brothers fathers I killed “chrispy critters” It could have been krauts nips huns boche gooks infidels towel heads imperialist pigs yankee pigs male chauvinist pigs the list is a varied as human experience This disassociation of one’s enemy from being human is called pseudospeciation You make a false species out of the other human and therefore make it easier to kill him The touchdown feeling combined with disassociating the enemy as human was in full glorious effect Ideally I would hope that in spite of the adrenaline I would at least stay conscious of a terrible sadness while I burned these people But burn them I would No kidding? Say what Mr Marlantes? But in some way Marlantes had a sensitivity that I will never be able to own I who had never made a decision that someone else would live or die would judge Marlantes from my safe world that never threatened death or was threatened by death And yes I am judging him right now knowing that I will never be in his place to make the decisions that he made about life and death I am righteous in my pacifism I can’t believe that Karl says this There’s a part of me that just loves maiming killing torturing This part of me isn’t all of me I have other elements that are indeed just the opposite of which I am proud So am I a killer? No but part of me is Am I a torturer? No but part of me is Karl says that he worries about the part of me that cannot understand that And I want to tell Karl that I certainly cannot understand thatIn the continuum of warriors where does Karl Marlantes stand? He is so philosophical that he must be an aberration How many like him came home in a body bag with a chunk of brain missing? How many books like this have not been written? I find it hard to attach him to his self definition as a spiritual being He seems tortured than torturing How much agony has he suffered not in the moment but in the much later reflection? Decades later he suggests This book is unbelievable There is a chapter titled “Lying” that starts out this way People lie They lie in business they lie in universities and they lie in the military Lying however is usually considered not normal the exception In Vietnam lying became the norm and I did my part Only in Vietnam lying became so much part of the system that sometimes not lying became immoral This book is unbelievable lying is the norm? Tell me about mom and apple pie please Body count is a lie but it is the score that counts Marlantes distresses me over and over with his apparent pleas to ignore individual conscience Isn’t that what this says? That your decisions in war must be guided by your stand ins for the incomprehensible “like the Marine Corps”? To be effective and moral fighters we must not lose our individuality our ability to stand alone and yet at the same time we must not owe our allegiance to ourselves alone but to an entity so large as to be incomprehensible namely humanity or God For us mere mortals who can’t grasp the incomprehensible we limp along with allegiances to various stepped down versions of the incomprehensible that seem to suit us like the Marine Corps the family France the Baptist Church or the Order of the Eastern Star We must strive however to always see these smaller entities as only small pieces of the larger one we’ll never comprehend That is because when the moment comes for a tough decision we can make it in light of the larger ghosts even scared to death in the mud with all those frightened kids around us Marlantes has some stunningly complex or maybe obtuse conversations about why he might follow “stupid orders” because of a loyalty to the larger unit He observes “We are generally delighted to be cogs”Some other nibs shared by Marlantes? There are plenty “Combat is the crack cocaine of all excitement highs – with crack cocaine costs”One motivation for bravery “I wanted a medal” “One very strong reason why I deplore ignorant attempts by civilians and non combat veterans to make boot camp ‘humane’ There is nothing ‘humane’ about dead kids because someone cracked under the pressure”“ he and the chopper crew were dead for sure if we didn’t break through to them we all simply rushed forward to reach them before the NVA killed them No one gave an order We the group just rushed forward all at once We couldn’t be stopped Just individuals of us were stopped Many forever But we couldn’t be This too is a form of transcendence I was we no longer me” “When a President or Member of Congress decides to go to war they must do so as warriors not ‘policy makers’ It is they who are choosing sides and using violence to stop violence the very definition of a warrior It remains a reason why the electorate should value military experience in its leadership positions” The chapter titles are a guide to the content of the book Temple of Mars Note Mars is the god of war Killing Guilt Numbness and Violence The Enemy Within Lying Loyalty Heroism Home “The Club” Relating to Mars There is some that is graphic and much that is intense Although I only succeeded minimally reading What It Is Like to Go to War was a lesson for me in trying to be non judgmental Karl Marlantes is a bright guy who has a lot to say about being a soldier Since I have never been a soldier it is probably good for me to hear what he has to say Since he speaks very well I cannot just write him off by saying “Bullshit” His opinions and beliefs are not ones that I am often able to confront rationally I can sympathize with him when he talks about being abused as a returning Vietnam veteran I want to respect his effort not to return abuse for abuse and to acknowledge his battles with the furies within himself I hear him say “The phrase ‘politically incorrect’ hadn’t been invented yet but I was a living prototype” I wonder what I would think if I had devoted as much energy to being a pacifist as he has devoted to being a warrior? It is clear from the book that he has struggled with his experiences from so many years ago Pre school teachers constantly use the convenient short hand “use your words” when a child gets aggressive The over riding message is “aggression is bad” It doesn’t recognize the healthy aspects of aggression Unrecognized the healthy drive goes over to the dark side There are times when physical aggressiveness is an appropriate response When you meet the serial killer on the jogging path words are going to fail you I would like to be able to be as cogent as Karl Marlantes is in this book His references to the Roman gods and the Greek myths are erudite He makes Yale his alma mater proud I have uoted many of his words I have read many books about the American War in Vietnam and this one is uniue It has some of the horror stories you come to expect in books about that war but it is also filled with an effort to teach and guide in a way that is different from any other book I have read I wrote this book primarily to come to terms with my own experience of combat So far – reading writing thinking – that has taken over thirty years I could have kept my thoughts in a personal journal but I took on trying to get these reflections published so that I could share them with other combat veterans Perhaps in some way I can help them with their own uest for meaning and their efforts to integrate their combat experiences into their current lives I also want to share my thoughts and experiences with young people who are contemplating joining the military or who are about to enter combat themselves sort of like providing them with a psychological and spiritual prophylactic for indeed combat is like unsafe sex – it’s a major thrill with possible horrible conseuences So if by reading this book before entering combat a young warrior can be helped to better handle the many psychological moral and spiritual stresses of combat then this book will have been worth writing In addition if the ideas in this book help citizens and policy makers attain a clearer understanding of what they are asking of their warriors and of their own role in sending these warriors into the morale uagmire and sacrificial fire called war then the book will have succeeded if not beyond my hopes beyond my expectations Marlantes is a proud Marine I can’t relate to that He has killed and wrote to help others confront what it means to be a killer He wants warriors to be able to kill in the right circumstances for the right reasons I am having a hard time assigning a number of stars to this book I would not expect a book about war to be an easy read It isn’t Marlantes is in a different emotional space than he was when he was a twenty three year old Marine lieutenant in 1969 I am going to cop out and suggest that you go online and read the NY Times book review that concludes “its facility and sensationalism are symptomatic of the book’s prevailing emotionalism which too often stands in the way of sustained social critiue and of the patient moral and political analysis reuired to unravel the convoluted network of courage shame honor obligation and betrayal that war entails” Print that on your book jacketI could rationalize three stars because I found it too disagreeable politically or five stars because I found it stimulating I am going with four stars and a recommendation that you think about reading What It Is Like to Go to War if you made it to the end of this loooooong reviewI have just finished listening to this as an audible book on June 21 2019 I haven’t re read my previous review but I am very certain that I now see this as a three star rather than four star book I honestly think the reason for that is that I just find myself in too much disagreement with the author He does a whole lot of self examination in the book and I think he very much errs by assuming other people have the same reactions as he does I simply do not believe that he is representative of the average person He is very much self identified with a warrior mentality and he overgeneralizes that aspect of personalities as a significant part of every human being He thinks a big part of the PDST problem is that people submerge there postwar hostility He is also very much a believer in talking things out continuously through the process of military training and war experiences I have left a number of notes as I listened to the Audible blog so will cut this short since the review is already very long This is a fascinating and introspective guy who has a lot of pretty interesting things to say but I think he is a little overly impressed with his version of the psychology of warfare And I am a little distracted by his view that guys should be proud of their war experiences and membership in the club