How to Tell a True War Story

Topics: Army, Vietnam War, Vietnam Pages: 6 (2535 words) Published: August 8, 2012
The story by Tim O’Brien shows how the soldiers are themselves and can also be serious. O’Brien also sees how Vietnam changes the soldiers and how they see the world now. There will be people that will ask if it’s true or not true they can asks what happened. There can be different ways to tell a story but they can ask what happen. O’Brien would know which story he really believes. O’Brien will give use by looking at Rat’s point of view, and Sanders point of view of Lemon death and how Rat copes with a letter. Here are three points’ that will go with O’Brien story the history, biography and literary criticism. O’Brien tells his story when he was in the Vietnam War though books that he has written. For example in “The Things They Carried” there is a character named Tim. One of the interviews from Library of Congress Tim O’Brien states that “he goes back and forth about Vietnam and also about his first girlfriend.” He was in 4th grade when he was in love and that using his girlfriend as an example that Vietnam was not that easy like losing his girlfriend at nine years old. In the story Bob Kiley was known as Rat. O’ Brien points out that Rat that had a good friend with him in the Vietnam War. They both were good soldiers and when Lemon would volunteer Rat would volunteer as well. He lets people know that his friend and he were goofing around like always. Lemon showed Rat that the war can be fun but also very serious. There will be times to goof around and there will be times to be services during the war. He tells people that when they were goofing around they felt like kids again. Lemon and Rat “were giggling and calling each other motherfucker”. They would go a nature hike in the woods and started messing around. They heard a noise and next thing a bomb killed his friend. Rat had taken his friend back with the other soldiers. Hs friend named was Curt Lemon. He told Sander and the other soldiers what happen to Lemon. Rat and his friend were in Vietnam but his friend gets killed. Kaufmann states that “Kiley “heat[s] up the truth, to make it burn so hot that you would feel exactly what he felt” (338). Rat wrote a letter to his friend sister to tell her about her brother. According Diane Andrews Henningfeld, [Catherine Calloway] says that, “O'Brien immediately begins to write about the creation of stories after he tells the story of Rat writing to Curt Lemon's sister: "A true war story is never moral. It does not instruct, nor encourage virtue, nor suggest models of proper human behavior, nor restrain men from doing the things men have always done." He told her stories about her brother that he was a good soldier that he would volunteer to do jobs. In the letter Rat started to get serious in the letter he would tell her what happen to her brother. He tells her “that he will look her up when he goes over there”. He tells her that just because her brother is gone she can talk to him whenever she needs to. So he sends the letter and he waits for two months for her to write back, but she didn’t write back. It’s hard for him to talk about his friend and how he dies, but Rat does it that way in the future everyone can know that Vietnam was no game at all. Vietnam letter would be going back and forth with the soldier and their families. They would be same soldier that will write to their wife, girlfriend, friends, but most of the soldiers wrote to their families. The soldiers would be waiting for them to write back. According to Samuel Brenner there was this husband that writes to his wife saying “Dear Darling, I love you so very, very much. Finally it’s over for a while and I can write. I don’t know where to being or what to say or how. I’ll just try to tell you how I feel, which is mostly proud, sad, tired and relieved” (71). The letter continues his wife what she has been to doing. Wondering if she is doing well also tell her how much he wishes he was there with her. That he will see her soon he is happy that he can write to...
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