Generals Die in Bed certainly demonstrates that war is futile and the soldiers suffer both emotionally and physically. Charles Yale Harrison presents a distressing account of the soldiers fighting in the Western front, constantly suffering and eventually abandoning hope for an end to the horrors that they experience daily. The ‘boys’ who went to war became ‘sunk in misery’. We view the war from the perspective of a young soldier who remains nameless. The narrator’s experience displays the futility and horror of war and the despair the soldiers suffered. There is no glory in
All bullets were counted, beds made, uniforms cleaned, this occurred until suddenly 03:45 arrived. “Men, the time is nearly here,” my words choked as self-hatred flooded my body, “What we do here today will be remembered for generations to come, we fight today not only for ourselves, but all who we know. All our mates and family who live back home!” A faint cheer followed my speech as I steadied myself for what was to come. “We charge in 5 minutes. We charge not only for our freedom but for the freedom of our country. For the freedom of the world!” Spit filled the air from the cheer which erupted from my unit this time. A unity formed over the men, a cold malevolent sweat captured me. Who was I to send these boys to their death? A resolve set inside me, I would fight alongside my men, their lives are worth the same as mine. 04:00 “THIS IS IT MEN! WE FIGHT FOR THE WORLD!” I screamed as I led the charge. Vaulting out of the trench I saw no man’s land clearly for the first time. Death was everywhere, flies swarming the pools of blood. The land so barren of life no greenery was seen. A cold resolution set over me, it was the Germans fault, they caused
When people think of the military, they often think about the time they spend over in another country, hoping they make it back alive. No one has ever considered the possibility that they may have died inside. Soldiers are reborn through war, often seeing through the eyes of someone else. In “Soldier’s home” by Ernest Hemingway, the author illustrates how a person who has been through war can change dramatically if enough time has passed. This story tells of a man named Harold (nick name: Krebs) who joined the marines and has finally come back after two years. Krebs is a lost man who feels it’s too complicated to adjust to the normal way of living and is pressured by his parents.
I'm forty-three years old, and a writer now, and the war has been over for a long while. Much of it is hard to remember. I sit at this typewriter and stare through my words and watch Kiowa sinking into the deep muck of a shit field, or Curt Lemon hanging in pieces from a tree, and as I write about these things, the remembering is turned into a kind of rehappening. Kiowa yells at me. Curt Lemon steps from the shade into bright sunlight, his face brown and shining, and then he soars into a tree. The bad stuff never stops happening: it lives in its own dimension, replaying itself over and over. (O’Brien 31)
Beginning my love of reading an early age, I was never the type of child who was drawn to fictional stories. As an 8 year-old child in West Virginia, I was recognized by the local library for my love of biographies, autobiographies and recollections of world events. This love has continued throughout my adult life, desiring to read novels such as “We Were Soldiers Once…and Young” by Lt. Gen. Harold G. Moore rather than watch the major motion picture “We Were Soldiers” starring Mel Gibson. Even though the motion picture received multiple awards, when reading the recollection of Mr. Moore’s accounts, the feeling of loss, distress, anxiety and fear can be felt in each word that he has written while reliving this horrendous war.
When Jeff returned, the army broke camp and started the long march to Springfield, Missouri. The sergeant was Millholland, who Jeff liked much more than Clardy. The next evening they camped 25 miles away from Springfield. When Jeff shot his gun to clean it, he got arrested and was taken before Clardy. As his punishment, he got all-night sentry duty. The battle was going to be at Wilson's Creek, Missouri. The north planed to attack the rebels at dawn and by surprise. They failed to surprise the rebels, lost hundreds of men and the battle. The day after the battle, Jeff had to report for ambulance duty. The field hospital was 2 large gray tents thrown together in a clump of trees. When Jeff was scanning the field of people, he saw lots of dangerously injured people, none of them looked happy
John had 3 kids with her that he had watched by his parents while he went off to war. His main objective now is to not end up like his other squad mates and die at the hands of the germans. The desire became stronger as he stared at the bodies of his dead squad mates. The blood flowing out like a river. The cold dead look on their faces. The men find an abandoned house to try and radio call for help. As they were trying to make the call they heard men speaking in german again. The voices were near by. John went to look out the window and counted ten men armed with rifles and submachine guns. The three men froze upon seeing the sight of the angry germans. John’s mind turned blank and he was unable to think of a plan to get the three of them out of this if they were discovered by the germans. But just then an M2 Sherman tank came mowing down any trees that came in its path and shot down the germans with machine gun fire. Tears of joy stream down John’s face at the sight of seeing a friendly tank with a bright yellow sun behind it. The nightmare was over and the darkness from the night has fallen. The three men have survived and are fortunate enough to return home to their families. John will get to see his kids once again in a happy and safe
It was 115 degrees; the platoon was walking through the middle of the desert each of them with 40 pounds of gear on and an M16A2 rifle. It was summer time in the country of Afghanistan and the temperature was rising. At this point I asked myself what the hell I am doing here and why did I join the United States Army? Right when I was thinking that I felt a tug on my leg and there stood a young boy about 7 years old with only one arm, “Candy,Candy” he asked. Upon speaking with the local villagers we found out that his arm was taken from an improvised explosive device (IED) planted
War can be and has been proven to be a deeply scarring experience for many soldiers. Evidently, nothing can prepare them for warfare, seeing close friends die, and narrowly escaping death themselves. Yet, the worst part of it all is having to live with those memories for a lifetime and the inability to forget. “But the thing about remembering is that you don 't forget” (O’brien 34, 1998). The war which is fought in the minds of soldiers lasts a lifetime, and its effects stretch far beyond the actual battle that is being fought. War can significantly affect a soldier mentally, as seen in the novel “The things they carried” by Tim O 'brien, an interview with Richard Dlugoz, and the poem “Coming Home” by Joe Wheeler.
Imagine being suddenly drafted to war, not prepared for the death and horror. Young, confused, scared, naïve. During the Vietnam War, many young men were forced to face a war that changed them, and not necessarily for the better. Many of the men who went to war experienced terrors that changed them in a way that affected their lives after, as shown by countless war stories and poems. Norman Bowker, from Tim O’Brien’s The Things They Carried (1990), is a perfect example of the hard-bitten war veteran archetype. Fighting in the Vietnam War and feeling as if he had a part in his friend’s death (Kiowa) caused him so much guilt and pain that he ended up hanging himself after endlessly driving around a lake when returning home. Similarly, Yusef Komunyakaa’s poem, “The Dead at Quang Tri”, emphasizes the ghosts that haunt soldiers during and after war. Overall, the haunting memories that characters deal with in war stories, like O’Brien and Komunyakaa’s, display the long lasting effects of death and war on the minds of soldiers.
The psychological effects, the mentality of fighting and killing another human, and the sheer decimation of human values is what makes war atrocious. War is not only fought on the battlefield though. This book also describes the feelings of a soldier fighting his own demons that war has brought on. The battle that the soldier has with himself, is almost if not more damaging than the physical battle of war. He will never forget his experience with battle, no matter how hard he tries the memories of artillery, blood, and death cannot be erased. “I prayed like you to survive, but look at me now. It is over for us who are dead, but you must struggle, and will carry the memories all your life. People back home will wonder why you can't forget.” (Sledge). This struggle still happens to soldiers today. Sledge’s words of the struggles still captures the effects of warfare that lingers today. The other effects that war has on the men is the instability that surrounds them at every hour of the day. They are either engaged in battle having bullets and artillery fired at them, or waiting for battle just so they can be deposited back in the pressure cooker of survival. “Lying in a foxhole sweating out an enemy artillery or mortar barrage or waiting to dash across open ground under machine-gun or artillery fire defied any concept of time.”
Starting with boot camp in Parris Island, the young man, still reeling from the recent attack on his country, was soon transformed into a marine. With this transformation came the thoughts and feelings that accompanied this gruesome way of life. For instance, following an intense battle on the Tenaru River, Leckie and his fellow men were forced to hear the names of the fallen. Here it is shown just how much a man’s thoughts and feelings can change once going into battle. “It is not always or immediately saddening to hear “who got it.” Except for one’s close buddies, it is difficult to feel deep, wracking grief for the dead, and now, hearing the lieutenant tolling off the names, I had to force my face into a mask of mourning, deliberately adorn my heart with black, as it were, for I was shocked to gaze inward and see no sorrow there” (Leckie, 72). Before the life of a soldier, Robert Leckie presumably would have felt remorse for the men that died in the battle but something in him had changed. After seeing so much loss and pain, the death taking place around him soon became a normal occurrence and as a result, he found his heart hardening to death. This passage shows just how quickly war can change a man and the thoughts hidden within himself. Following this battle, Leckie continued to fight and morph into a man, though changes to his personality and demeanor became
He woke up sweating and breathing roughly; it has been forty-eight years since the war, but every night, his nightmares take him back to the forest again. He’s scared of closing his eyes, because the darkness allows the images of bloody limbs, empty eye sockets, of death to fill his mind. I’ve never seen my father as helpless as he looks after waking up screaming, and to help ease his suffering, I decided to read the entries of a diary that he kept during and after the war:
Listless is the air in an empty room, just swelling the curtain; the flowers in the jar shift.