Emotions of War Pain, wounds, scars, love, hurt, emotions, anger, death, victories, losses, burdens and regrets, all elements defining war. War is a word that instantly creates beliefs, tension, feelings and of course opinions. Tim O??™Brien reflects on the physical and emotional burdens of soldiers during war in the prose, ???The Things They Carried.??? A disturbed Veteran??™s inner demon??™s is revealed by Yusef Komunyakaa in the poem, ???Facing It.
??? Hunter S. Thompson??™s prose of a historical terrorist attack on the United States causing a constant fear amongst the entire population is depicted vividly in, ???Kingdom of Fear Seize the Night, September 11, 2001.??? War in its entirety, has the ability to destroy any physical and emotional characteristics of life as a whole.???The Things They Carried,??? by Tim O??™Brien introduces the physical and emotional burdens soldiers carry with them during war, creating distraction, despair and regrets remain.
O??™Brien??™s prose took place during the Vietnam War, which was the longest in history. Using his personal experiences in the Vietnam War from 1969 to 1970, O??™Brien creates a heart felt story. Tim Obrien portrays character of the Platoon leader, Jimmy Cross in his personal story of ???The Things They Carried???. Using his first hand experiences during the Vietnam War, O??™Brien unleashes the raw truth of the physical and emotional burdens he and other soldiers carry.
We, as a society, possess the common knowledge of the physical stress and demands put on soldiers during engagements. Through O??™Brien??™s depiction we are introduced to stressful burdens of soldiers that weighs heavy on mental state. O??™Brien tells of Jimmy Cross??™s deep, paralyzing love he holds for the love of his life that ironically doesn??™t love him. Cross incurs intensive day dreams of his fantasized relationship with Martha, which leaves his men vulnerable. He reveals during one of Cross??™s delusional episodes the breakdown Cross experienced due to his feeling of responsibility for the death of Ted Lavender. O??™Brien reflects on this by saying, ???Cross found himself trembling when hearing about the death.
He tried not to cry. With his entrenching tool, which weighed five pounds, he began digging a hole in the earth. He felt shame. He hated himself. He had loved Martha more than his men and as a consequence Lavender was now dead, and this was something he would have to carry like a stone in his stomach for the rest of the war???. Men killed, and died, because they were embarrassed not to. These men carried the secret of cowardice, a soldier??™s greatest fear of blushing. Many instances occurred, leading the reader to sympathize with the soldiers regarding their enormous burdens of love, grief, memories and death that tend to cause them distraction.
Human beings are not bullet proof, nor made of stone. A soldier is not different than the store clerk, they too have emotions and normal life struggles. The difference is that men at wars are just that, they are at war. No mom, dad, sister, brother, wife, husband or family member is by their side to help them with their every day burdens. Do the best one can do with such extreme conditions, for there is no blame to be placed.
The poem, ???Facing It,??? written in 1986, shows how war can leave physical battle wounds on it prey, emotional scarring, heartaches, losses, victories, death and may steal one??™s soul. Yusef Komunyakaa shows ultimate scarring emotionally from his military service experiences during the Vietnam War. He not only lost fellow comrades, he lost the peacefulness within himself that can never be undone.
Observing other??™s who have lost and suffered from the war, ???he finds it shocking that they can continue living normal lives???. Yusef found it hard to comprehend that other people could not visibly carry the impact of the war with them, wherever they go. In 1965 he joined the longest War in history, the Vietnam War.
The poem was created with personal feelings and experiences. Yusef Komunyakaa reveals the extreme depth of his inner guilt, having shared memories and events with his fallen brothers, he is angry that he indeed did not share these men??™s ultimate end. Visiting the Vietnam Memorial Wall, Yusef reads the names on the memorial: ???I go down the 58,022 names, half-expecting to find my own in letter like smoke???. Being filled with such emotional distress, he has reoccurring illusions of flashes from the past, mere memories that take on a surreal quality within him.
As his rock-solid control and emotions struggle against each other, his perception of himself and his surroundings constantly alters as well. Yusef portrays ultimate emotional scarring within himself, refusing to allow inner healing. The ability of others to carry on creates hostile emotions within him. He writes: ???Names shimmer on a woman??™s blouse, but when she walks away the names stay on the wall???. He finds it hard to comprehend that a woman can approach the memorial and then walk away and take nothing with her, leaving it all behind exactly as it existed before.
Hunter S. Thompson wrote ???Kingdom of Fear??? on September 12, 2001. The war against terrorism is causing an everlasting fear among our population.
Thompson screams, ???We are At War now-with somebody-and we will stay At War with that mysterious Enemy for the rest of our lives???. History was made on 9-11-2001, the most devastating terrorist attack on American soil. These attacks caused the fall of the Twin Towers in New York City and the attempted destruction of the Pentagon and White House.
Thompson??™s prose was based on these terrorist attacks, steering him into a whirlwind of emotions and anger about war. He screams with ear piercing volume and curses outrageously that it is going to be a religious based war, undertaken by Muslims against unbelievers that shall never end. He portrays the actions of the U.S.
Government wasn??™t and will never be ready for such attacks. He states with sarcasm, ???Nothing-not even George Bush??™s $350 billion ???Star Wars??? missile defense system-could have prevented Tuesday??™s attack???. He shows no faith in the U.S. Government??™s ability to end the war on terrorism, but a great deal of certainty that war shall be continuous forever more. He shows no trust within our leaders, which we as a Country elected to do the job. War alone is a dreadful event, much less terrorist attacks on our nation killing thousands of innocent people.
Degrading Presidential Officials, Military Leaders, or innocent citizens could not prevent the catastrophic events of that horrific day nor allow for the unity our Country should have to be restored. Given the United States is viewed as a super power, terrorism has and will always be a threat from religious zealots and fanatical regimes around the world, not from one sole event or group.So many outlooks and thoughts on what affects war may have on an individual or a Country, the subject could be never ending.
Personal experiences tend to range from one extreme to another. One??™s victory is another??™s defeat. The Author??™s writings through first hand knowledge, verify the vast opinions on war alone. Works CitedKomunyakaa, Yusef. ???Facing It.??? The Wadsworth Themes in American Literature Series:1945 ??“ Present. Theme 20: Witnessing War.
Henry Hart: Jay Parini, Gen. Ed. Boston:Wadsworth/Cengage, 2009.
42-44. Print.O??™Brien, Tim. ???The Things They Carried.??? The Wadsworth Themes in American Literature Series: 1945 – Present.
Theme 20: Witnessing War. Henry Hart: Jay Parini, Gen. Ed. Boston: Wadsworth/Cengage, 2009. 46-60.
Print.Thompson, Hunter. ???Kingdom of Fear Seize the Night, September 11, 2001??? The Wadsworth Themes in American Literature Series:1945-Present. Theme 20: Witnessing War. Henry Hart: Jay Parini, Gen. Ed. Boston: Wadsworth/Cengage, 2009.