Phil Klay's Redeployment takes readers to the frontlines of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, asking us to understand what happened there, and what happened to the soldiers who returned.

Interwoven with themes of brutality and faith, guilt and fear, helplessness and survival, the characters in the stories struggle to make meaning out of chaos.

When Marie Colvin was killed in an attack in Syria in February 2012, the world mourned the loss of the greatest war correspondent of her generation.

Marie was known for her signature style, her black eye patch and the pearls gifted from Arafat, and her fearlessness in covering some of the world’s most dangerous conflicts. She died while reporting on the suffering of Syrian civilians,sacrificing her life with a cause she believed in- the need to witness the bear anonymous victims of war.

Telling her story for the first time is Paul Conroy, a British war photographer who had forged a close bond with Marie, and was with her when she died. His book is Under the Wire: Marie Colvin’s Final Assignment. It is a gripping and moving account of their friendship, and of their final assignment to one of the most hellish places on Earth.

    Fearing a backlash, according to our next guest, the military has routinely distorted its casualty reports in order to hide the true cost of war.

When Soldiers Fall takes a new look at the way Americans have dealt with the toll of armed conflict. Drawing on a vast array of sources, from George Patton's command papers to previously untapped New York Times archives, historian Steven Casey ranges from World War I (when the U.S. government first began to report casualties) to the War on Terror, examining official policy, the press, and the public reaction.

Martin Fletcher has been called the gold standard of TV war correspondents and is rapidly building a new reputation as an author. He has won almost every award in television journalism, including 5 Emmys.

His latest novel is Jacob's Oath. As World War II comes to a close, Europe’s roads are clogged with 20 million exhausted refugees walking home. Among them are Jacob and Sarah, lonely holocaust survivors who meet in Huddle berg. Jacob is consumed with hatred and cannot rest until he kills his brother’s murderer, a concentration camp guard.

He must now choose between revenge and love, and avenging the past and building a new future. 

  Based on years of intensive primary document research, Lawrence in Arabia: War, Deceit, Imperial Folly and the Making of the Modern Middle East definitively overturns received wisdom on how the modern Middle East was formed. Sweeping in its action, keen in its portraiture, acid in its condemnation of the destruction wrought by European colonial plots, this is a book that brilliantly captures the way in which the folly of the past creates the anguish of the present.

Scott Anderson is an American novelist, journalist, and a veteran war correspondent.

  If All The Sky Were Paper is a new play by Andrew Carroll based on his New York Times bestselling books War Letters: Extraordinary Correspondence from American Wars and Behind the Lines: Powerful and Revealing American and Foreign War Letters - And One Man's Search to Find Them.

In 1998, Carroll launched The Legacy Project, a national, all-volunteer initiative that works to find and preserve wartime correspondence. Carroll has traveled to 40 countries, including Iraq and Afghanistan, to seek out what he calls "the world's great, undiscovered literature,"and he has collected more than 90,000 previously unpublished letters and e-mails from every conflict in U.S. history.

The play has recently awarded a prestigious $20,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Arts and a $10,000 grant from the California Humanities to help reach audiences around the country through a series of readings and performances. The newly created Center for American War Letters, which Carroll founded, will house the Legacy Project's collection at Chapman University.

If All The Sky Were Paper will be performed at The Linda on Saturday, November 16 at 8:00 pm.

We are joined by Andrew Carroll and John Benitz, director of the production and Associate Professor in the College of Performing Arts - Department of Theatre at Chapman University in Orange, CA.

There’s something strangely illusory in the approach (in less than a month) of the 69th  Anniversary of the end of WWII.  For those of us in the inexorably dwindling number of veterans in this category, there are the unsettling news stories of the “Right-Wing surge in Europe,” and the seemingly continuing inability of former allies (This nation included) to achieve peaceful resolutions to still volatile and incendiary ignitions.  These are dramatically fuelled by the wars and continuing intolerance of nations, still at odds over the seeming inequities that defy our abilities to analyze and end them.

"Theater of War" is a public health project, having produced hundreds of dramatic readings of Greek tragedies for mixed civilian and military audiences to start a conversation about the return of soldiers to civilian life.

Vassar College in Poughkeepsie, NY is hosting "Theater of War" for a dramatic reading of scenes from Sophocles' "Ajax" on Sunday, Nov. 3rd from 4:00-6:00p in the Vassar Chapel in association with the Vassar College Department of Greek and Roman Studies.

Bryan Doerries is the Founder and Artistic Director of “Theater of War” and he joins us to tell us more.

    John Lawton is a producer/director in television who has spent much of his time interpreting the USA to the English, and occasionally vice versa. He has worked with Gore Vidal, Neil Simon, Scott Turow, Noam Chomsky, Fay Weldon, Harold Pinter and Kathy Acker. He is the author of 1963, a social and political history of the Kennedy-Macmillan years, six thrillers in the Troy series and a stand-alone novel, Sweet Sunday.

His latest, Then We Take Berlin is a gripping, meticulously researched and richly detailed historical thriller – a moving story of espionage and war, and people caught up in the most tumultuous events of the twenty-first century.

Malalai Joya

Oct 9, 2013

Malalai Joya was named one of Time magazine’s 100 Most Influential People of 2010. An extraordinary young woman raised in the refugee camps of Iran and Pakistan, Joya became a teacher in secret girls’ schools, hiding her books under her burqa so the Taliban couldn’t find them.

She helped establish a free medical clinic and orphanage in her impoverished home province; and at a constitutional assembly in Kabul, Afghanistan, in 2003, she stood up and denounced her country’s powerful NATO-backed warlords. She was twenty-five years old.

Two years later, she became the youngest person elected to Afghanistan’s new Parliament. In 2007, she was suspended from Parliament for her persistent criticism of the warlords and drug barons.

Malalai Joya has a pair of events in our region today. She will be speaking tonight at 7:00 pm at the First Unitarian Universalist Society of Albany on Washington Avenue and at 1:00 pm at the Bush Memorial Auditorium at Russell Sage College in Troy, NY