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Inside the Book — An Excerpt from the Preface

Why put together a collection of old war stories? What useful purpose does it serve? My answer is simple. To me, now a septuagenarian, it seems that our planet — and maybe Washington in particular — has become almost comfortable with regular wars. President Eisenhower's warning to America to beware of "the military-industrial complex" has been brushed aside.

We Americans are notoriously deficient about taking lessons from our own history. So perhaps this book will remind people what war is really like. Slaughter is no less bestial now than it has been through recorded history.

Armed with this knowledge, the next time a politician says we must invade and destroy evildoers who are being well contained by other means, maybe we'll think twice.

And, then, maybe we won't.

Read the entire Preface


What's in Each Chapter

Chapter One. Cambodia, An Unnecessary War
An eyewitness account of the fall of Cambodia to the genocidal Khmer Rouge.

Chapter Two. The Killing Fields
The desperate search for Schanberg's Cambodian colleague Dith Pran who was unable to leave the country and became lost, for nearly five years, in the madness of the Khmer Rouge regime.

Chapter Three. East Pakistan Fights to Become Independent Bangladesh
During Schanberg's first foreign posting to New Delhi, India went to war with Pakistan to help free neighboring Bangladesh.

Chapter Four. Vietnam, 1972
First-hand reports from the front lines in Vietnam during the massive 1972 North Vietnamese Easter offensive.

Chapter Five. Return to Cambodia: A Military Coup
Years after the defeat of the Khmer Rouge, Schanberg returns to assess Cambodia -- and a military coup erupts.

Chapter Six. The Cover-Up of U.S. POWs Left Behind in Vietnam
President Nixon's declaration that all American POWs had been returned by Hanoi was not true. A cover up began that continues to this day.

Chapter Seven. The Bush Doctrine in Iraq
Long before the Iraq War, Neo-Conservative ideologues who would later run the Bush Administration formed a think tank and published a blueprint for that conflict — nobody paid any attention.

See a listing of all articles in each chapter