“Read this unsparing, scathingly direct, and gut-wrenching account—the war Washington doesn’t want you to see. Then see if you still believe that Americans ‘support the troops.’”
—Andrew J. Bacevich
Author of Breach of Trust: How Americans Failed Their Soldiers and Their Country
PW’s Top 10 Authors Pick Their Favorite Books of 2013
Publishers Weekly picked: Dirty Wars: The World is a Battlefied by Jeremy Scahill
Dirty Wars, an exposé of the secrets behind the “war on terror” by Nation correspondent Scahill, offers a disturbing version of the militarized future. In his pick, Scahill celebrates an author and veteran journalist who provides a personal counterpoint to the subject of Dirty Wars, relating the stories of the wounded returning home from battle.
Jeremy Scahill picked: They Were Soldiers: How the Wounded Return from America’s Wars—The Untold Story by Ann Jones “My pick for the best book of 2013 comes from Ann Jones, who shows us a side of America’s wars that we often don’t see. She embeds with the doctors who spend their lives dealing with soldiers who are grievously wounded, psychologically scarred, or killed in combat. She talks to the families of troops who speak of their inability to recognize their sons and daughters, husbands and wives, or mothers and fathers because they have come home so transformed by their experiences in war. It’s a stunning portrait of the psychological and physical effects of war, with which we so rarely reckon. Jones, the daughter of a World War I veteran, brings a real understanding of the gap between the celebrations of our vets and the reality of how they are treated when they return. ‘America’s soldiers return with enough troubles to last the rest of their lives,’ she observes. She also questions the idea that war is inevitable. ‘War is not natural,’ she writes. ‘We have to be trained for it, soldiers and citizens alike. And the “wars of choice” we were trained for, the wars these soldiers took part in, need never have been fought.’ ”