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Thursday, November 29, 2012

"On Killing" by Lt. Col. Dave Grossman

On Killing: The Psychological Cost of Learning to Kill in War and Society
by Lt. Col. Dave Grossman

Product Details
  1. Paperback: 377 pages
  2. Publisher: Back Bay Books

Point: Killing in war is not easy. It is gruesome, awful, and haunting - no matter what the media says. We have turned it into something it is not. Violence in media to real killing is often like porn to marriage.

Path: Grossman divides his work into eight sections. He begins by explaining the internal nature of resistance to killing in most individuals. He moves on in section two to the killing and combat trauma. Section three deals with the varying layers of guilt due to physical proximity. Section four brings the previous sections together to consider them. Section five answers questions concerned with killing and atrocities. Section six addresses the stages of response in killing. Section seven reveals victims of the Vietnam War. And section eight points the finger at media and how we are training our children how to kill.

Sources: Statistics, scholarly works, and testimonies line this work. The most difficult part for me was dealing with the personal testimonies. It was tragic.

Agreement: This book helped me to see the awfulness of killing. Taking a life is horrific. At times it must be done, but it is never easy. They are a soul. An individual. They have a family.

Disagreement: The psychology was heavy. The language was par for the topic.

Personal App: It gives me a new view of God telling David that he was a man of blood.

Favorite Quote: "The soldier above all other people prays for peace, for they must suffer and bear the deepest wounds and scars of war." MacArthur

I gave this a 3 of 5 stars only because I felt as though that is a neutral rating. I cannot rate this. It was valuable, but faulty. It made me reconsider my own value of human life in war. But it was awful to read. It hurt

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Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. (Philippians 3:8)