your memorial day to-do list

see triptych portraits of british soldiers from before/during/after their deployment in afghanistan.  then see some more of them & read an interview with the photographer, lalage snow.

from the war, literature & the arts journal, download and read a pdf of dan moreau’s “108 degrees under partly cloudy skies.”

watch a fascinating documentary on pbs about the ghost army of wwii.  kept a secret for 40 years after the war, the visual artists who were recruited by the u.s. army to create a completely fake battalion are now free to talk about their service.  my local affiliate even did an interview with a member of that 603rd engineer camouflage battalion.

read, from just a single issue of willow springs, some excellent work related to our brothers in arms:  issue 67 features poetry from iraq veteran hugh martin and a short story from natalie sypolt about a soldier who comes home with a prosthetic arm.

from national geographic magazine, see photography from lynsey addario of a rebuilding iraq in 2011.

revisit some reports from the front lines, including ernie pyle’s “the god-damned infantry” from 1943 and the 2002 rolling stone piece from evan wright (who went on to write the book that david simon’s generation kill was based on).

check out an entire issue of the iowa review devoted to the work of u.s. veterans & active duty personnel, or the first issue of so it goes, which featured a “war and peace” theme.  there are also journals which always publish literature of/about the military, including o-dark-thirty‘s the report (online) and the review (print), as well as epiphany.

on the new york times website, read words straight from veterans via their “home fires” and “warrior voices” series.


  • Melissa says:

    Great post, J. The most recent issue of Tin House (55) also had a war theme, and features some great stuff, including WWII fiction from Anthony Doerr and a fascinating interview with a journalist reflecting on the wars she’s covered.

  • Jason Sommer jason says:

    thanks! i totally missed that tin house issue. but i figured this week we could focus on the good men & women of the armed forces who have served, sacrificed, and even died on behalf of their country, doing things most of us can’t ever imagine doing, let alone volunteering for. then next week we can get back to trying to figure out what the fuck is up with all the rampant sexual assault.

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