Go In For A Haircut, Leave With A Beating

Augusto Giacoman went in for a haircut, high and tight. Then things went terribly wrong.

Putting Down Our Guns for A Tray Of Hummus

Nathan and his unit traveled to Oman in 2013 to train with its military. Quickly, training evolved into an experience the Corps had not prepared them for.

So We’re Famous, So To Speak

Michael Carson talked philosophy and tragedy in a Mosul coffee shop. Back in the U.S. he’s still asking questions for which there are no answers.

How To Lose A War

Drew Pham saw his refugee parents in Afghan civilians. Compassion, he thought, was the answer. But a part of his soul hardened as he learned to love war.

As Iron-filled Tears Stained The Deck

He bore his son’s body to the Americans’ base and let the blood drip and congeal on the wooden deck. And then he left, and left the blood behind.

Those Are The Eyes Of A Demon

Augusto Giacoman parked his Stryker under the streetlights and then the bomb exploded. What happened next is a hazy mixture of memory and nightmare.

Until He Saw the Terror They Sowed

Augusto Giacoman almost jumped for joy when he was assigned his first midnight raid, but what he saw that night quickly changed his mind.

For the Love of Machine Guns

Jerad W. Alexander fired his first machine gun at 12 and was hypnotized. Not many years later, patrolling Iraqi streets, he learned the weapon’s power.

The Frog’s Revenge Came in the Form of Rockets

Augusto Giacoman’s humanity was reduced to instinct as the rockets began to hit, and he understood how the frog he’d encountered as a child must have felt.