This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

The Man I Killed, By Tim O'brien

1677 words - 7 pages

"We have to start treating Vietnam as a country and not a war. It'll take the old age and death of all veterans before it stops being our 51st state (Alvarez, 2013)." In the story "The Man I Killed", Tim O'Brien, who served in the U.S military in Vietnam, describes the guilt many American soldiers felt about the atrocities they committed in Vietnam. "Vietnam is not an appendage of America. That sort of thinking got us into the mess in the first place. Were bound together by some painful history, but it’s not our liver or our appendix- it's a country (Alvarez, 2013)."
The Vietnam War was one of the longest and most expensive wars in American history. It started from 1955 till April 30, 1975. This war lasted for almost 20 years. According to the article "How the U.S Got Involved In Vietnam" by Jeff Drake the U.S attacked Vietman and this wasn't supposed to happen. This war could have been avoidable. The 58,000 Americans didn’t have to die, nor did the 2,000,000 Vietnamese. The U.S government was responsible for their deaths. What the government told the public from the very beginning was that they were going to war because they had to stop the communist menace in Vietnam or other countries would follow suit; that they had to defend the democratic South Vietnamese government against the gathering Red hordes. While other people say it was an attempt by the U.S to suppress a heroic Vietnamese national liberation movement that had driven French colonialism out of its country (Drake, 1993).
According to Jeff Drake "imperialistic arrogance, personal gain and prestige, greed, anti-Communist hysteria, and the desire to control, drove the decision making process that led to U.S to war." Jeff Drake was an American soldier who fought in the Vietnam War. He states that him as a soldier who initially supported the war, at the end opposed it. As many as other soldiers they couldn’t make any sense of the military policy that they were ordered to carry. According to him they were told that they were there to stop the communist menace and because South Vietnamese asked them to save them from the same communist menace, but what they experienced didn’t add up to what they were being told. The power to change the course of the history was in our government hands, but unfortunately this happened (Drake, 1993).
Tim O'Brien, author from the story "The Man I Killed" is considered to be a Vietnam writer. Tim O'Brien is an American soldier who fought in Vietnam. Even though O'Brien was opposed to the Vietnam War, he served for two years from 1969-1970 as a foot soldier in Vietnam ("Tim O'Brien"). O'Brien's Vietnam stories are not so much about the war as they are about people, with the war providing the background ("Rising Star Tim O'Brien"). Even though his experience as a soldier in Vietnam had to do a lot in becoming a writer, since he was a young boy he liked to read and write. Both his parents were bibliophiles so this became a great influence in him. By the age...

Find Another Essay On The Man I Killed, by Tim O'Brien

The Things They Carried by Tim O'Brien

1913 words - 8 pages . They marched for the sake of the march.” (O’Brien 15).The words uttered by Tim correlate to the ideas and feelings that O’Brien had about war as well, which can be seen by the statement made by O’Brien “. A man who had seen terrible things that would haunt most people, O’Brien continued his time as a writer of tragedy, he had been desperate to return to the place he called home but once he had returned all he could think about was Vietnam. One

The Things They Carried by Tim O'brien

1826 words - 7 pages the young Vietnamese man remain ingrained in his mind, and he says, “even now I haven’t finished sorting it out. Sometimes I forgive myself, other times I don’t” (O’Brien, 128). Despite this deep-seeded insecurity about his role in the war, Tim O’Brien, by all accounts of the NBER study, would be a shining example of a Vietnam War veteran. He has a stable residence, job, and family, on all of which, as the study finds, his veteran status “has no

"The Things They Carried," by Tim O'Brien

654 words - 3 pages THE THINGS THEY CARRIEDIn his book "The Things They Carried," Tim O'Brien describes a group of soldiers marching through Vietnam. He does this by describing the items that each of them carries with him during the march. The things that the soldiers carry with them are both tangible and intangible items and what these things are depends upon the individual soldier. They carry the basic necessities for survival and the bare minimum to make life as

The Things They Carried, by Tim O'Brien

1114 words - 4 pages In retrospect chapter one demonstrates how Tim O’Brien and the other soldiers were influenced by the Vietnam War, many of the soldiers had to face the burdens of war, the lost of innocents and the sexual yearning for women. One of the fundamental themes introduced in the first few pages of the novel was the burdens many of soldiers encounter during the war. The soldiers in the novel carried some remarkably heavy physical and emotional

The Things They Carried by Tim O'Brien

1115 words - 4 pages The Things They Carried by Tim O'Brien “The Things They Carried” was a story about soldiers caught in the confusion of the Vietnam War. There are a lot of apparent themes that are dealt with when writing a story about war, especially about death. I enjoyed reading this story; however there were some things about it that I was concerned about. I would like to discuss the author’s style of writing, his meaning of the title “The Things They

The Things They Carried by Tim O'Brien

1500 words - 6 pages The Things They Carried Tim O’Brien This work of art is a war story, with love, tragedy and personal responsibility, giving details of what one carries, survives and ponders during events that take place out of our control. The Thing Things They Carried, by Tim O’Brien depicts human beings just like us that don’t get a choice of what happens around us but how to survive with the things we hold dear that help us make it through. It also

Ambush, by Tim O'Brien

1420 words - 6 pages ago. When his daughter ambushes him with her statement, “…I guess you must’ve killed somebody,” he simply replies with, “Of course not” (131). However, he then details for the reader his experience of throwing a grenade and killing an enemy soldier from back when he was in the military. This story is Ambush’s exposition – when an author provides the reader with necessary background information. Tim O’Brien summarizes his exposition by saying

Themes Within "The Things They Carried" by Tim O'Brien

1182 words - 5 pages caused by so many of the emotions used in this book, that it becomes difficult not to realize its' significance in the book. The guilt caused by killing a man, even though he would have killed you. The mental torment felt when watching your comrade being scraped off of a tree. "They were just goofing. There was a noise, I suppose, which must've been the detonator, so I glanced behind me and watched Lemon step from the shade into bright sunlight

"In the Lake of the Woods" By Tim O'Brien

693 words - 3 pages " 'Hey Sorcerer,' Weatherby said. The guy started to smile, but Sorcerer shot him." What kind of dark situations could entice a man to shoot a comrade? This is what Tim O'Brien suggests in his novel, In the Lake of the Woods. As O'Brien previous works also have presented, this book deals a lot with Vietnam and the seemingly dark consequences that can distort reality for veterans. He speaks of the reaction of a broken man whose wife runs off, and

The Truth Within: "The Things They Carried" by Tim O'Brien

699 words - 3 pages do, I guess, is make things present."(180)Talking about the war stories in the manner O'Brien does, even if they are not true, was a way of saving the soldiers lives and keeping the dead alive as well. By telling stories about the soldiers that died, was their way of not dealing with the loss and keeping their spirits alive. They would tell stories to each other about a certain soldier who had died, but the story they would tell was like if that

"The Things They Carried" by Tim O'brien (analysis paper)

821 words - 3 pages in the war. But the Viet Nam War in The Things They Carried by Tim O'Brien was totally different. We don't see any honor, any glory in it but all we see is people getting killed, innocence replaced by cruelness and soldiers destroying themselves after the war. This book helps us understand better the other side of the war that only the people who served in it know enough to talk about it.

Similar Essays

The Man I Killed By Tim O´Brien

776 words - 4 pages The Man I Killed tells the story of a man, Tim, who killed a soldier during the Vietnam War. Tim killed this story out of obligation and not because he aspired to. After killing the Viet Cong soldier, Tim O’Brien describes himself as feeling a bit guilty and compunctious. When selected soldiers enter war such as the Vietnam War, some are capable of killing while others kill because they have a legacy to uphold. Physically, a soldier may appear

Man I Killed Essay

975 words - 4 pages action was automatic, not political and not personal. He believes, too, that if he had not thrown the grenade, the Vietnamese soldier would have passed by without incident. Azar sees only a fallen enemy and compliments O'Brien on a thorough job he cannot understand what O'Brien is feeling. Kiowa is more sympathetic, offering textbook comments, such as switching places with the dead man and that he would have been killed anyway, in order to console

Things They Carried Essay: The Man I Killed

806 words - 3 pages The Man I Killed in The Things They Carried   Much can be interpreted by what people write.  The great thing about interpretations is that different writings can be interpreted differently.  Just like in the writings by Tim O'Brien.  His book titled "The Things They Carried," is a very deep and touching collection of stories about the Vietnam War.  The book is written, as a whole under the title "The Things They Carried," but is a

The Things They Carried By Tim O'brien

1497 words - 6 pages chapter worship Dobbins a little bit even calling him “soldier Jesus”. Earlier I said that O'Brien develops the characters in the book slowly, to show the gradual effect war has on a person. With this in mind you can see that after having two chapters in a row that are all focused on Dobbins, O’Brien chooses to have two chapters The man i killed and ambush which had nothing to do with Dobbins interrupt the flow. Then suddenly after ambush he has