Kill Anything That Moves: The Real American War in Vietnam

Kill Anything That Moves: The Real American War in Vietnam

Book rating: 05 Hardback

By (author) Nick Turse

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  • Publisher: Metropolitan Books (imprint of Henry Holt & Company)
  • Format: Hardback | 384 pages
  • Dimensions: 160mm x 239mm x 38mm | 590g
  • Publication date: 11 February 2013
  • Publication City/Country: New York, NY
  • ISBN 10: 0805086919
  • ISBN 13: 9780805086911
  • Illustrations note: two 8-page inserts
  • Sales rank: 103,035

Product description

Americans have long been taught that events such as the notorious My Lai massacre were "isolated incidents" in the Vietnam War, carried out by a few "bad apples." However, as award-winning journalist and historian Nick Turse demonstrates in this pioneering investigation, violence against Vietnamese civilians was not at all exceptional. Rather, it was pervasive and systematic, the predictable consequence of official orders to "kill anything that moves." Drawing on a decade of research into secret Pentagon files and extensive interviews with American veterans and Vietnamese survivors, Turse reveals the policies and actions that resulted in millions of innocent civilians killed and wounded. He lays out in shocking detail the workings of a military machine that made crimes in nearly every American unit all but inevitable. "Kill Anything That Moves" takes us from archives filled with Washington's long-suppressed war crime investigations to the rural Vietnamese hamlets that bore the brunt of the war; from boot camps where young American soldiers learned to hate all Vietnamese to bloodthirsty campaigns like Operation Speedy Express, in which a general obsessed with body counts led his troops to commit what one participant called "a My Lai a month."

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Author information

Nick Turse is the author of "The Complex," the managing editor for TomDispatch.com, and a fellow at the Nation Institute. His work has appeared in the "Los Angeles Times," the "San Francisco Chronicle," and "The Nation," among other publications. Turse's investigations of American war crimes in Vietnam have gained him a Ridenhour Prize for Reportorial Distinction, a Guggenheim Fellowship, and a fellowship at Harvard University's Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study. He lives near New York City.

Customer reviews

By Calvin 14 Mar 2013 5

Kill Anything that moves is as important a contribution to vast Vietnam War record as any ever published. Extremely well written, Turse takes a story hard to hear and offers a book hard to put down.
The research and documentation are unparalleled in my experience and he makes a decades old account compelling in our present circumstance of war without end.
Kill Anything That Moves is a Must Read!

Review quote

No book I have read in decades has so shaken me, as an American. Turse lays open the ground-level reality of a war that was far more atrocious than Americans at home have ever been allowed to know. He exposes official policies that encouraged ordinary American soldiers and airmen to inflict almost unimaginable horror and suffering on ordinary Vietnamese, followed by official cover-up as tenacious as Turse's own decade of investigative effort against it. "Kill Anything That Moves" is obligatory reading for Americans, because its implications for the likely scale of atrocities and civilian casualties inflicted""and covered up in our latest wars""are inescapable and staggering.