Synopses & Reviews
Best-selling author and Pulitzer prize-winning journalist Chris Hedges and journalist Laila al-Arian spent several months interviewing Iraqi war veterans to expose the patterns of the occupation and how it affects Iraqi civilians. The testimonies of these soldiers and Marines provide a disturbing window into the indiscriminate killing of unarmed and innocent Iraqis that is carried out daily by the occupation forces.
Collateral Damage is organized around key military operations on the battlefield — Convoys, Checkpoints, Detentions, Raids, Suppressive Fire, and “Hearts and Minds.” Hedges and Al-Arian uncover how the very conduct of the war and occupation have turned the American forces into agents of terror for most Iraqis. The military convoys that speed through the centers of towns, often driving on the wrong side of the street or on sidewalks, have become trains of death. Soldiers fire upon Iraqi vehicles with impunity at checkpoints; pregnant women being rushed to hospital have been killed at roadblocks when their husbands failed to slow down and children have watched in horror as their parents have been killed.
Hedges and Al-Arian show how this widespread pattern of civilian killing has fueled the insurgency in Iraq, giving rise to instability, sectarian violence, and total chaos.
Best-selling author and Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Chris Hedges and journalist Laila Al-Arian spent the past year interviewing over fifty veterans to expose the patterns of the occupation in Iraq. The testimonies of these soldiers—many of who remain deeply traumatized by their experiences—uncover how the very conduct of the war and occupation have turned the American forces into agents of terror for most Iraqis.
Collateral Damage is organized around key military operations—Convoys, Checkpoints, Detentions, Raids, Suppressive Fire, and “Hearts and Minds.” Military convoys traveling at tremendous speeds through towns have become trains of death. Civilians are routinely run over or shot to death. Soldiers fire upon Iraqi vehicles with impunity at checkpoints. Late-night detentions based on shoddy intelligence terrify women, traumatize children, and radicalize the young men caught in their dragnet.
These soldiers have found the moral courage to speak out about the true nature of a war that has become one long, unchecked atrocity, and has given rise to the instability, sectarian violence and chaos that we witness today in Iraq.
The first account of the war in Iraq, as told by returned veterans, that gives a disturbing insight into the indiscriminate killing that is carried out on unarmed and innocent Iraqis.
About the Author
is a Senior Fellow at The Nation Institute and the author of several bestselling books including War is a Force That Gives Us Meaning
and American Fascists
Laila Al-Arian is a freelance journalist who has written for United Press International, and the Washington Report on Middle East Affairs.