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My War: Killing Time in Iraq Paperback – 13 Feb 2006


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Product details

  • Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Corgi; New Ed edition (13 Feb. 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0552154377
  • ISBN-13: 978-0552154376
  • Product Dimensions: 12.8 x 2.5 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 784,246 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Review

"'My War by Colby Buzzell is nothing less than the soul of an extremely interesting human being at war on our behalf in Iraq'" (Kurt Vonnegut)

Book Description

An extraordinary account of the war in Iraq.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
The book is based on PFC Buzzell's weblog - "live" from Iraq.
If you're about to deploy to Iraq or Afghanistan and call a Stryker, Piranha or a similar armoured vehicle your home for six to twelve months, this is an especially interesting read.
I had hoped for some more details about the small-unit tactics employed, but I understand that it would be much too sensitive for the World Wide Web. In the end operational security becomes a major hurdle.
Colby Buzzell comes across as straightforward, to the point and honest. There's no hiding his fear or covering up breaking general order number one. It appears that killing time can be almost as difficult, challenging and dangerous as killing insurgents, if you can find them. Then again don't worry they'll find you.
If you can manage to put it down, it's also an excellent "stop'n go book". Well, it's basically a diary with short stories in between the entries so you can read a couple of days worth, go to work and easily pick up where you left in the evening - possibly with a sneak peek during the lunch break.
I considered doing a "relief in place" by replacing Just Another Soldier by Jason Christopher Hartley - another US Army blogger from Iraq - with My War on my "Platoon Commander's Favourites" listmania list. I decided against it though, because they both tell their stories so well, and it's fascinating to hear it from the "trigger pullers" instead of the generals.
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Format: Paperback
This is not some view from the top but a look at the war from someone who fought it as a young soldier with mixed feelings about the military establishment and with solid feelings for America and our purpose there. His writing is refreshing, his humor is laugh out loud and his insight is immediately identifiable from those of us who have served our country in the military. I served 4 years on active duty with the Marine Corps from 1970-74 and left the Marines as a newly promoted Captain. Mr. Buzzell was the kind of thinker I'd loved to have had in my platoon. When presented with the mission, he gave it 100% every time, never losing his humanity and morals. For those who want to know the truth (and can handle the truth), this book is highly recommended and will come to be recognized as one of the best books to come out about this war from an infantry soldier's viewpoint. He has my respect.
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11 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Richard Pursehouse on 2 April 2006
Format: Paperback
This book was recommended to me and I was not disappinted. In an often humorous account on his time driving around in 'Stryker' fast patrol vehicles as part of a Quick Reaction Force, Buzzell describes how he changed from a drifter/ waster in and out of dead-end jobs into someone with a purpose. Failing to impress the Marine recruiter (their loss), he joins the Army and ends up in Iraq. Bored at the uncomfortable life there he starts his own 'blog' reflections (similar to 'Just Another Soldier' blogger) on life in Iraq. Eventually these draw attention from the authorities, who allow him to continue because his writings are funny and give a far more accurate portrayal of life in Iraq than any offical communiques or press releases (and that includes from embedded journalists).
His Dedication (at the end of the book) sums up his sense of humour, as it includes his recruitment officer "without whom all this would not have been possible."
Wait for the film, it should be awesome and if done properly, on a par with 'Blackhawk Down.' He describes the plethora of digital cameras - some even used while firefights were taking place! Including some by himself. At times his understated writing on the randomness of fate (eg a mercenary killed en route to the airport, his letter of resignation found in his pocket) make the reader pause to reflect on the whole crazy war. And the 'peace'
In short this is a presumably accurate account of life in the Army by someone who lived it, and loved it, and came out the other side a better person for it. Even his marriage survived (unlike in "Shooter"). He joined the Army because they guaranteed him the chance to shoot big guns and blow things up. He fulfilled both aspirations.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Nice to read about USA's oil war from the point of view a average guy who actually fought it, with his motivations, doubts, fear and questioning about what he was actually doing there. Not a great book from a professional writer, but then again it's a collection of blog posts and other comments, so nobody is being fooled here.

Even though I see Iraqi's invasion as pure imperialism, I liked the book and it was stimulating enough to stop me from judge all the GI Joes mentioned there, after all they had as much control of the situation as me, who don't even live in one of the coalition forces' countries.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By John E on 25 Feb. 2006
Format: Paperback
I'll keep this short; it's an excellent book, eye-opening, shows the dark side of war (is there a bright side?), well detailed and the author is has a great sense of humour. The accounts of combat scenes are particularly good.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Blue frog on 14 May 2006
Format: Paperback
Don't get me wrong, I liked this book. Fast paced and a slightly different take on the first person front line accounts. Buzzell is different or at least different from how I imagined US forces personnel to be in Iraq. I never though they would like the same music as me!

I had to write this review to balance some of the other reviews which were a little too gushing (for gushing read American). I never read Buzzell's blogs live, as it were, and I think the transfer to a book loses some of the potency and it becomes like a lot of other first person accounts. I get the impression that the passion that some people seem to like about this comes purely from the immediacy of it originally being live on the net. Certainly Buzzell's level of description and demonstrated understanding of the Iraqi issues are far from in depth. The book is simply a combination of his blogs and I suspect diary entries. It is definitely worth a read so don't be put off but don't expect more than a simple fast paced read.
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