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Glamour of War

April 9, 2007

Recently re-reading Dispatches by Michael Herr, one of the most notable books to come from the Vietnam War.
Near the end of one chapter the book details a conversation with photographer Tim Page regarding the “glamour of war.”
Page goes off. The gist is is “how can you take the glamour out of war?” “The glamour out of a Huey?
I don’t have the book in front of me, otherwise I would write it word for word. I loaned the book to someone else, just so you know.
“You just can’t do it,” is the basic conclusion.

Then, about a month ago, I found myself watching Patton, the George C. Scott piece from back in the day.
Patton talks about the beauty of the battlefield.

Me, I have never seen, or known war, so I can’t speak on first hand knowledge, but these ideas got me thinking.

Is war glamorous? Is it beautiful?

It can’t be right?

What about the IED? How can this be viewed as anything but horrific? We have had mines, traps, etc, for a long time in warfare, but perhaps with the new IED and EFP, the ball of molten copper used for piercing armor, we have entered a new era in warfare?

It all seems stupid, crazy, but again, I don’t know. I haven’t seen it, experienced it.

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