The Long Walk: A Story of War and the Life That Follows

By Brian Castner

Brian Castner served 3 excursions of responsibility within the center East, of them in Iraq because the head of an Explosive Ordnance Disposal unit. every time IEDs have been came across, he and his males may paved the way in both disarming the lethal units or looking through rubble and is still for clues to the bomb-makers’ identities. And while robots and different distant ability failed, one technician could swimsuit up and take the lengthy stroll to disarm the bomb by means of hand. This deadly video game of cat and mouse used to be, and remains to be, the genuine struggle inside of America’s wars within the center East. while Brian back stateside to his spouse and kinfolk, he entered an both inexorable fight opposed to the enemy inside, which he involves name the “Crazy.”

This exciting, heartbreaking, stunningly sincere e-book alternates among harrowing realities: the fear, pleasure, and camaraderie of strive against, and the lonely conflict opposed to the unshakeable worry, nervousness, and survivor guilt that he—like such a lot of veterans—carries inside.


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I persisted on. The scent of shit was once overwhelming within the afternoon warmth. I regarded down. “Hey, i discovered it! ” I yelled to Castleman, who was once shooting of the scene for facts. There at my ft used to be a superbly shaped, and fully intact, reduce gut. The small gut above and anus lower than have been torn off and scattered, however the colon itself was once pristine, and lay there like I had simply got rid of it from the organ bag within the intestine of a Thanksgiving turkey. It was once attractive, crammed with the digested continues to be of an unknown final meal. Castleman walked over and regarded down the place I pointed. The gut smelled love it was once cooking in a pan. He shrugged. I shrugged again. We walked off and left that shit-filled colon to bake at the black asphalt within the sizzling Iraqi summer time solar. The cigar should have been a Cuban. If now not, it was once nonetheless rattling solid. Cubans have been available in Iraq, and the Colonel, an previous fighter pilot, looked like he knew his cigars. I didn’t comprehend the place he obtained them, and that i didn’t ask. I easily favored being provided one, as we sat and talked at nighttime scorching wasteland evening. increase! Ba-boom! The 155-millimeter howitzers hadn’t stopped for the final hour. I simply observed the preliminary flashes while the weapons fired and the end result the place they landed; the darkish dusty haze obscured the artillery items themselves. The Colonel and that i sat open air our tent, our transitority snoozing quarters for the evening, and watched the express. Tiki torches and miniature lighting on a string, bulbs encased in brightly coloured Easter Island heads, ringed our makeshift smoke pit. I ignored a tumbler of whiskey, however the cigar, hot evening, stress-free chair, and dialog took me again to many a patio bar at domestic. growth! Thump thump thump thump! The weapons by no means paused as chopper after chopper dredged an identical path all evening. Wounded and useless got here domestic, clean Marines went out. The touchdown lighting fixtures of the birds flicked on after they hit the sting of the air base, Al Taqaddum, a desolate gap up the Euphrates in western Iraq that the Colonel and that i have been caught at for the evening. Sticky and rainy the helos back, pausing on the pad, unloading their dripping shipment, after which up and turning to reload grunts at the different finish of the bottom. around and around they went on their grisly circuit. growth! growth growth increase! 3 illumination rounds the excessive explosives into town of Habbaniyah, a nasty local at the floodplain lower than us. The illum rounds hung within the air, stored aloft via parachutes as their candles bathed the city in an eerie too-white mild, transitority spotlights for the Marines relocating residence to deal with. Small-arms fireplace popped and belt-fed computerized computer weapons carried on their dialog within the distance, underneath our excessive plateau. We sat and talked simply because this wasn’t our struggle. We have been simply caught there, ready on a chook to Baghdad. A scholar of background, the Colonel have been telling me tales all evening. tales of the previous British Royal Air strength Base in Habbaniyah, a strip of concrete in that very city, now being shelled as we watched.

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