Fiction Or Nonfiction, War Has The Same Effect

952 words - 4 pages

A true war story is not always true. Some would say a true war story is an experience from war. Others, who came from war, would say they make up stories to make war seem crazier than it really is. Tim O’Brian states that the story is fiction, but the moral is true. Tracy Kidder had written war stories based on his time in Vietnam, and his book is rated as nonfiction, even though he admits that some war stories are made up.
Contained within The Things They Carried, is a story by a man named Mitchell Sanders. “Sanders tells a story about a group of soldiers that camped on a listening mission, and all they did was listen. They heard many different noises, and paranoia hit them. They ordered airstrikes on the motionless, noisy ground, and when the commander asked why they did that, the soldiers had no answer” (O’Brien 74). The moral of the story is that the quietness of war can drive someone crazy. In war, according to Sanders, when there is no noise, the soldier never knows what to expect to break that silence. The moral is believable, even though the book is fiction, and Sanders states that the story was false. Also, even though the story is fiction, Sanders is good at lying because the story is quite believable.
Inside of My Detachment, chapter one, is a story about a man named Bill. “Bill was riding in an APC when they had gotten hit, and his friend fell, wounded. Bill tried to stop the captain from driving, but the captain pursued his own path. Later, the captain moved Bill to a different section, so that Bill wouldn’t talk dirty about him. Bill wanted to kill him” (Kidder 7). Bill later states that this was true, but he came home wounded because of his bad influence of being drunk. This story seems true, because of the horrible death that Bill’s friend probably faced, and the terrible decision by the captain, in Bill’s opinion. The fact that Bill’s major wound is from being drunk doesn’t help with the believing part. “Bill later states that he may have made some pieces up to make his stories sound exciting” (Kidder 8). He doesn’t want to seem like the loser that did nothing in the war. He wants to be the hero, but the more lies he tells, the more he believes them.
Between the two stories, they are both believable, but they both have a possibility of being false. In Sanders’ story, “He explains a very detailed story of soldiers hallucinating strange noises after doing nothing but laying and listening” (O’Brien 74). This seems true because people can tend to go insane if they do nothing for about a week. The piece that makes this unbelievable is the fact that Sanders says he made the story up, but the...

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