Miyoko Hikiji “All I Could Be”

July 15th, 2013

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Miyoko  HikijiHikiji

American women in the military are now allowed to take combat roles.

But long before that official decision was made, Miyoko Hikiji, a young woman from Iowa, found herself in Iraq in the early days of the war, doing one of the most dangerous jobs there was….

Miyoko  Hikiji

Hikiji was a truck driver, traveling across roads studded with IEDs, bringing critically needed ammunition and supplies to the men in combat.

Now, in her book “All I Could Be,”: Miyoko Hikiji tells it just the way it was.

She calls it “part military history, part personal revelation, part therapy, the stuff of so many war stories that have become a vital part of the great American tradition.”

Continue to the interview > > >

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Peter Van Buren “We Meant Well”

October 5th, 2011

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Peter Van Buren

After the U.S. invaded Iraq and toppled Saddam Hussein, the next American task was the rebuilding of Iraq. Initially in the hands of the military, it shifted to a civilian corps that included a number of State Department professionals, working in Provincial Reconstruction Teams.

Peter  Van BurenVan Buren

One of those who went to Iraq to help was career Foreign Service officer Peter Van Buren, who was tasked there for a year. But from his first day in Iraq, Van Buren realized this was not going to be what he expected. In fact the reality of what was going on around him was beyond what anyone may have expected. His new book is called “We Meant Well.”

Listen to Peter Van Buren

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Luis Carlos Montalvan “Until Tuesday”

May 27th, 2011

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Army Captain Luis Carlos Montalvan came home from two tours of duty in Iraq with the Combat Action Badge, two Bronze Stars, and the Purple Heart. He also returned with a damaged back, a blown-out knee, severe head injuries, blinding headaches, and post-traumatic stress disorder.

After his return to the states, the pressuress exacted their toll. Montalvan began drinking too much, he lost his marriage, he fell victim to agoraphobia. That was before Tuesday.

Luis Carlos MontalvanMontalvan

Tuesday is a golden retriever, a service dog trained to assist the disabled. Montalvan didn’t know it at the time, but Tuesday had had a difficult history, as well.Now Montalvan tells their story — two wounded warriors who found and healed each other — in his book “Until Tuesday.”

Listen to Luis Carlos Montalvan

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Kelly Kennedy “They Fought for Each Other”

May 9th, 2011

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Kelly  KennedyKennedy

When she went to Baghdad in 2007 Kelly Kennedy had something most other embedded journalists don’t have — combat experience. She’s a veteran of Desert Storm and Mogadishu, and joined Charlie Company, 1/26th Infantry, to cover it for Army Times.

Kelly  Kennedy

But as it turns out, even her military experience couldn’t prepare her for what she witnessed with Charlie Company. Daily fights with insurgents, criminals, and mujahedeen eventually cost the company 31 lives, a higher toll than that suffered by any other such unit. Kennedy tells their stories in her book “They Fought For Each Other.”

Listen to Kelly Kennedy

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Ryan Conklin “An Angel From Hell”

April 12th, 2010

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Ryan  ConklinConklin

At the age of seventeen Ryan Conklin enlisted in the Army, finding himself eventually a turret gunner with the famed 101st Airborne “Screaming Eagles” in Iraq.

A member of Angel Company he wound up in Tikrit. Now, in his book “An Angel From Hell” Conklin details his day-to-day life on the ground in the war — and the TV stardom he found upon his return.

Listen to Ryan Conklin

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