This is an incredible accounting of a time period about the Vietnam War, told with such descriptive clarity by journalist Michael Herr.
The journalist conveyed the horror using such descriptive language you could smell the fear, feel empathy for these children who wore the uniform of of military. He descrobed the young men as young but their eyes were old, old before their time having witnessed horrors no one should ever see.
He rode in choppers that were under fire and those filled with bodies of dead marines. He had humorius stories about the converstions with the men and frightening moments when they were targeted by incoming missles. Drugs, drink, death and sadness.
“I went through that thing a number of times and only got a fast return on my fear once, a too classic hot landing with the heat coming from the trees about 300 yards away, sweeping machine-gun fire that sent men head down into swampy water, running on their hands and knees towards the grass where it wasn’t blown flat by the rotor blades, not much to be running for but better than nothing.”
Herr didn't have to be in Vietnam and soldiers and Marines who realized this were gob smacked. One Marine stated once he was back in the States his own mama could be sent over and he'd never come back.
It took him years to write the book Dispatches as he came home with crippling depression. Writing this was probably theraputic.
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