26 May 2015
Open Ended Question:
How do the other soldiers in the Alpha Company react to the death of Ted Lavender and are their reaction a water shed example to the dangers of becoming overly attached to ones comrades in war?
The two people most affected by the death of Ted Lavender are Kiowa and Jimmy Cross. Jimmy and Kiowa both contain unremitting guilt for the death of their fallen comrade. Kiowa for a while could not stop talking about the death and when told to shut up by Norman Bowker, Kiowa still continued to think about Lavender’s death. Furthermore Jimmy Cross is hit hard by the death and burns the letters he has received from Martha as a way to make sure he is solely focused on the war. However, the reaction of Cross and Kiowa are not the result of being overly attached to their comrades. Although I cannot draw from personal experience, it is clear your fellow soldiers are all one has when fighting an enemy as vicious as the voracious Vietcong. It can never be seen as dangerous to become close with your fellow soldiers because they are all one has when fighting a war. The closeness of the unit throughout the conflict is an extended metaphor for how comradely is ones only hope in war. It is the only way one can avoid a state of decrepitude.
Current Event Question
In the next thirty years, is it possible to see similar books or movies written or directed about more recent wars such as Iraq or Afghanistan? If so, what does this say about the similarity between all wars?
The simple answer is yes. What people see in war can never be unseen and…