Tim O 'Brien's How To Tell A True War Story'

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English 112-V1 Paper 1 True War Stories War is hell. For those that have not been there, that is a statement that must simply be accepted. There are stories to explain the hell. Those stories we should listen to respectfully and sometimes these stories may have deep, infinite wisdom attached, or they may not. The stories may simply be a form of release for the soldier telling them. Tim O’Brien, Vietnam veteran and author, in “How to Tell a True War Story”, explains to us the logistics of a true war story. He explains that a war story is never moral, cannot be generalized and that the point, if any, may not hit you until later in life and that in the end the story is never really about the war, it’s much deeper.…show more content…
(288) O’Brien explains that if “you don’t care for obscenity, you don’t care for the truth” He goes on to explain that when men go to war they will come home talking dirty. He opens telling the story of a soldier, Rat, that lost a close friend. Rat’s friend was killed by an IED. He and Rat had been playing a game, the young man turned to walk away and tripped the detonator on the IED. They were both 19. At 19 years of age Rat had watched his buddy die in front of his eyes. In the beginning of the story Rat has written a letter to his buddy’s sister and really “poured his heart out in it” ( 287-288).The “cooze” ( 288) never writes back. Many soldiers, male and female, are young, when they are sent to war. They are forever changed and their way of talk is just one thing that is altered. It alters their mind sets and they are hardened towards many unspeakable situations that would make a civilian cringe. Therefore, O’Brien explains throughout this piece, their stories tend to be filled, at times, with additional material because that helps them deal with the enormity of what they’ve been
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