Recently, best-selling author and award-winning New York Times journalist CJ Chivers visited West Point and spoke to cadets and faculty at an MWI-organized event. A former infantry officer in the US Marine Corps, Chivers has become one of America’s most well-known and respected journalists. In 2011, his book The Gun was published, tracing the history of the Kalashnikov assault rifle—the AK-47—the world’s most abundant weapon. His newest book is The Fighters: Americans in Combat in Afghanistan and Iraq, which he discussed during this event.
The book tells the stories of some of the more than 2.7 million Americans who have served in Afghanistan or Iraq since September 11, 2001. Watch the full video of his remarks below.
Agree that whole nation needs to have its stakes at any conflict. Partially agree with drafting. I'd would put it more as mandatory service to nation, that would be military (for those that have a passion for it), or any other service (Peace Corps, Fire fighters, etc.), or any other Public serving for a certain amount of time.
The goal is twofold. First develop a personal notion of nation by connecting each person with the community in one way or another. And by raising the stakes of any conflict to a larger portion of the nation without seriously hurting the advantages of a volunteer force.
My thanks to the Modern War Institute for putting this video on line. Having read both of C.J. Chivers books as well as his articles in the New York Times, I feel that I owe him my sincere thanks for bringing me just a little bit closer to understanding what our soldiers experience after they volunteer for service, and what they endure both during and after they are part of the active military. I'm an old lady who live in Connecticut, and I can assure you, very few of the people I know ever think too much about what goes on in America's wars. Again, my thanks to all of the people in the video audience, to the MWI, and to Mr. Chivers (as well as to the New York Times, who publishes some of his work).