Ten-second review: Interviews and incidents in the Vietnam War. They add up to its incomprehensibility to the men who fought it. "The Intel report lay closed on the green field table and someone had scrawled, 'What does it all mean?' across the cover sheet."
Quote: “…in that village the f------g ducks are VC [Viet Cong].” p. 332.
Paraphrase: The bird colonel didn’t like calling the VC “Charlie” because he liked an uncle named Charlie. So he called the VC “rinky-dinks” which fit them perfectly except it was too long, so he called them “dinks.” p. 335.
Quote: “ ‘After the first tour, I’d have the goddamnedest nightmares. You know, the works. Bloody stuff, bad fights, guys dying, me dying…I thought they were the worst,’ he said. ‘But I sort of miss them now.’” p. 341.
Best American Essays of the Century. Editors: Oates and Atwan.