Aftermath: The Remnants of War: From Landmines to Chemical Warfare--The Devastating Effects popular 2021 of Modern Combat sale

Aftermath: The Remnants of War: From Landmines to Chemical Warfare--The Devastating Effects popular 2021 of Modern Combat sale

Aftermath: The Remnants of War: From Landmines to Chemical Warfare--The Devastating Effects popular 2021 of Modern Combat sale

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In riveting and revelatory detail, Aftermath documents the ways in which wars have transformed the terrain of the battlefield into landscapes of memory and enduring terror: in France, where millions of acres of farmland are cordoned off to all but a corps of demolition experts responsible for the undetonated bombs and mines of World War I that are now rising up in fields, gardens, and backyards; in a sixty-square-mile area outside Stalingrad that was a cauldron of destruction in 1941 and is today an endless field of bones; in the Nevada deserts, where America waged a hidden nuclear war against itself in the 1950''s, the results of which are only now becoming apparent; in Vietnam, where a nation''s effort to remove the physical detritus of war has created psychological and genetic devastation; in Kuwait, where terrifyingly sophisticated warfare was followed by the Sisyphean task of making an uninhabitable desert capable of sustaining life.

Aftermath excavates our century''s darkest history, revealing that the destruction of the past remains deeply, inextricably embedded in the present.

From the Inside Flap

In riveting and revelatory detail, Aftermath documents the ways in which wars have transformed the terrain of the battlefield into landscapes of memory and enduring terror: in France, where millions of acres of farmland are cordoned off to all but a corps of demolition experts responsible for the undetonated bombs and mines of World War I that are now rising up in fields, gardens, and backyards; in a sixty-square-mile area outside Stalingrad that was a cauldron of destruction in 1941 and is today an endless field of bones; in the Nevada deserts, where America waged a hidden nuclear war against itself in the 1950''s, the results of which are only now becoming apparent; in Vietnam, where a nation''s effort to remove the physical detritus of war has created psychological and genetic devastation; in Kuwait, where terrifyingly sophisticated warfare was followed by the Sisyphean task of making an uninhabitable desert capable of sustaining life.

Aftermath excavates our century''s darkest history, revealing that the destruction of the past remains deeply, inextricably embedded in the present.

From the Back Cover

In riveting and revelatory detail, Aftermath documents the ways in which wars have transformed the terrain of the battlefield into landscapes of memory and enduring terror: in France, where millions of acres of farmland are cordoned off to all but a corps of demolition experts responsible for the undetonated bombs and mines of World War I that are now rising up in fields, gardens, and backyards; in a sixty-square-mile area outside Stalingrad that was a cauldron of destruction in 1941 and is today an endless field of bones; in the Nevada deserts, where America waged a hidden nuclear war against itself in the 1950''s, the results of which are only now becoming apparent; in Vietnam, where a nation''s effort to remove the physical detritus of war has created psychological and genetic devastation; in Kuwait, where terrifyingly sophisticated warfare was followed by the Sisyphean task of making an uninhabitable desert capable of sustaining life.
Aftermath excavates our century''s darkest history, revealing that the destruction of the past remains deeply, inextricably embedded in the present.

About the Author

Donovan Webster is a journalist, bestselling author, and filmmaker. A former senior editor at Outside magazine, he has written for The New Yorker, National Geographic, and Smithsonian. As a co-founder of the Center for International Rehabilitation and an early member of the International Campaign to Ban Landmines, he was a co-recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize in 1997. He lives in Virginia.

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4.5 out of 54.5 out of 5
101 global ratings

Top reviews from the United States

Toe Tag
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
A guide to disaster tourism
Reviewed in the United States on October 5, 2015
This is not your typical history book. After all, the author makes it his quest to find out what remains of some of history’s bloodiest conflicts. He visits Verdun and is allowed to see sections of France that are uninhabitable more than 100 years since the conflict... See more
This is not your typical history book. After all, the author makes it his quest to find out what remains of some of history’s bloodiest conflicts.
He visits Verdun and is allowed to see sections of France that are uninhabitable more than 100 years since the conflict started. He visits places where people are prohibited to walk because of munitions and the unearthed remains of the fallen.

He visits the Ossuary of Verdun and humbly witnesses the devastation brought upon the degradation of human spirit in the war. I am particularly grateful for the information he provides in this section of the book. It truly shows the hellacious nature of the conflict and the results of man’s inhumanity to man.

The author then travels to Stalingrad with a guide who can tell you where units of both Russian and German armies camped at the height of the battle. In an astonishing moment the guide stops and informs the author that he found the artifacts and remains of Italian and Romanian units in this area assigned to the German 6th army.

These units were annihilated, some historians even use the word vanished, to describe what happened to them in the soul crushing Soviet counter attack. And in many places the land cannot be used again as the munitions found there are still dangerous. Those who do continue to farm stack bones high as the Earth slowly reveals its history

The book continues to Vietnam to the place where one of my great mentors served: Khe Sanh. His descriptions of land that was once part of a French plantation are vivid. We are gone. But Khe Sanh is still there. They live it every day.

At this point, I’ll let you find out where the author goes next. You might be quite surprised by some of the locations.
The author makes a hell of a point about how we treat each other and ultimately the land where these events takes place. Excavations of battlefields from the past seldom reveal the carnage of the 20th century. Ultimately, I think this was the purpose of this book.

Normally, I end these reviews with a suggestion for another book. I’m going to do something different and suggest listening to Dan Carlin’s excellent pod cast on the history of World War One, Blueprint for Armageddon. I will also suggest reading Guy Sajer’s book, The Forgotten Soldier. If you’re interested in World War one Ernst Junger’s Storm of Steel is an excellent read. For Vietnam I recommend The Hill Fights: The first battle of Khe Sanh.
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John Flora
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
A little dated, but still fascinating
Reviewed in the United States on May 16, 2009
Donovan Webster''s writing style is rich in observational detail. He paints vivid and evocative word pictures as he leads the reader through the battlefields of France, Russia and Vietnam examining the dangerous and tragic remnants of war. Things slow down when he turns his... See more
Donovan Webster''s writing style is rich in observational detail. He paints vivid and evocative word pictures as he leads the reader through the battlefields of France, Russia and Vietnam examining the dangerous and tragic remnants of war. Things slow down when he turns his attention to the legacies of America''s nuclear and chemical weapons programs.
I blew through this book in a couple of sittings - partially because it''s an easy read and also because it''s fascinating stuff for a military buff. Fortunately, he keeps the "man''s inhumanity to man" hand-wringing to a minimum and gives us mostly straight reportage.
I read this on the recommendation of history podcaster Dan Carlin and, like Carlin''s other recommendations, it didn''t disappoint.
I guarantee you''ll find interesting stuff you didn''t know if you read this book.
The information is more than a decade old, but it''s still worth the price of admission.
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Amazon Customer
3.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Could have been a winner
Reviewed in the United States on September 25, 2017
This book is interesting, relatively broad, and well laid-out, but I dont trust the information presented to be entirely factual. My area of expertise may be a little esoteric but my interests are broad. When I read to learn more about a subject I know little about, all I... See more
This book is interesting, relatively broad, and well laid-out, but I dont trust the information presented to be entirely factual. My area of expertise may be a little esoteric but my interests are broad. When I read to learn more about a subject I know little about, all I can judge the accuracy of the author against is the way he treats things that are within my area of expertise. In this case I''m disappointed. There''s a lot Webster has gotten right, but there are some glaring errors which make me question the rest of the book. That and his use of flowery descriptions better suited to romantic fiction really put me off. And honestly, it''s about 25% too long. Three stars for historically interesting, but no more than three.
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acbiii
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Outstanding read
Reviewed in the United States on August 8, 2020
It is an excellent read on the issue. Webster covers each of the areas with a skill that brings the reader to the site of the chapter. I feel like I lived through the interview. I look forward to all of his works.
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Wes Raine
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
The Horror
Reviewed in the United States on October 3, 2007
As the title would suggest, Aftermath deals with the consequences of war ordinance in every day life. I was particularly interested in the lingering effects of World War I, a war fought nearly 100 years ago. There are amazing accounts of the bomb clearing squad searching... See more
As the title would suggest, Aftermath deals with the consequences of war ordinance in every day life. I was particularly interested in the lingering effects of World War I, a war fought nearly 100 years ago. There are amazing accounts of the bomb clearing squad searching uninhabitable areas of the French countryside and turning up thousands of live and/or unexploded shells from battles fought in 1918. The stories of the millions of people slaughtered in the great wars of Europe is unsettling in and of itself, but the descriptions of Russian fields that are still strewn with the bones of these soldiers is unfathomable. The details of more current events puts a more contemporary perspective on the aftermath of conflict and makes one realize that the technology may change, but the mess still remains. Aftermath is an easy and engrossing read for anyone interested in history, military or otherwise.
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Anonymous
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Best book I’ve read in a while
Reviewed in the United States on July 6, 2019
As the title says, this is the best book I’ve read in a while. Each section is the perfect length to prevent the reader from getting bored. It’s great to read about the aftermath of war for a change rather than just the history and events. Would highly recommend
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Packrat
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Reminder that war effects last-well written
Reviewed in the United States on April 25, 2018
Excellent book. Horrible leftovers -still-From WWI, WWII, Vietnam and Gulf Way1
Wish everyone in Congress that is a hawk would read it
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Kindle Customer
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Amazing book.
Reviewed in the United States on November 20, 2018
I only wish this book was longer. I''d never read about the aftermath of battles - the cleanup and removal of bodies and weapons - until now. Supremely fascinating, and written with depth and emotionally charged feelings from people that have to do the cleanup. Again, I... See more
I only wish this book was longer. I''d never read about the aftermath of battles - the cleanup and removal of bodies and weapons - until now. Supremely fascinating, and written with depth and emotionally charged feelings from people that have to do the cleanup. Again, I only wish this book longer.
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Top reviews from other countries

BM
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
The cost of war
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on June 23, 2017
Brilliant read. Fascinating to hear of all the different ordnance clearance efforts around the world and the history of it all. It really is a fantastic read, though of course fairly grim considering the subject matter. I would recommend it to everyone though, as it gives...See more
Brilliant read. Fascinating to hear of all the different ordnance clearance efforts around the world and the history of it all. It really is a fantastic read, though of course fairly grim considering the subject matter. I would recommend it to everyone though, as it gives you a broader understanding of the cost of war once war is over.
Brilliant read. Fascinating to hear of all the different ordnance clearance efforts around the world and the history of it all. It really is a fantastic read, though of course fairly grim considering the subject matter. I would recommend it to everyone though, as it gives you a broader understanding of the cost of war once war is over.
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S
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Great Book!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on May 2, 2009
Fascinating subject matter and very well written. My favourite chapter was the first which discusses the remains of The Great War in France but the rest are equally good.
Fascinating subject matter and very well written. My favourite chapter was the first which discusses the remains of The Great War in France but the rest are equally good.
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Jon
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Good book, reads more like a long article than an academic history/military history though
Reviewed in Canada on April 3, 2019
I learned some very interesting things from this book, and I like the format of chronologically covering from ww1 to modern wars and their differing geographic legacy. It is definitely an underlooked aspect of war, and his book is a great introduction to the subject. I...See more
I learned some very interesting things from this book, and I like the format of chronologically covering from ww1 to modern wars and their differing geographic legacy. It is definitely an underlooked aspect of war, and his book is a great introduction to the subject. I found myself wishing for more quantitative information, and some was there to be fair, such as numbers of shells per square meter of Verdun, land mines in a stretch of Kuwait etc, but it seemed like whenever he was touching on the conflicts and history itself it was often very superficial with occasional errors (like saying soldiers in a photo from the fighting in Stalingrad were carrying "kalashnikovs" among other minor things. It read like someone who is a great journalist looking into the subject but not very interested/knowledgeable about the history, which can be appealing if you want this perspective but I found myself bothered by the little inaccuracies scattered throughout, that could have been very easily rectified in editing. Still recommend, just know what to expect.
I learned some very interesting things from this book, and I like the format of chronologically covering from ww1 to modern wars and their differing geographic legacy. It is definitely an underlooked aspect of war, and his book is a great introduction to the subject. I found myself wishing for more quantitative information, and some was there to be fair, such as numbers of shells per square meter of Verdun, land mines in a stretch of Kuwait etc, but it seemed like whenever he was touching on the conflicts and history itself it was often very superficial with occasional errors (like saying soldiers in a photo from the fighting in Stalingrad were carrying "kalashnikovs" among other minor things. It read like someone who is a great journalist looking into the subject but not very interested/knowledgeable about the history, which can be appealing if you want this perspective but I found myself bothered by the little inaccuracies scattered throughout, that could have been very easily rectified in editing.

Still recommend, just know what to expect.
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Martin Landry
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Definitely worth reading
Reviewed in Canada on June 3, 2015
An amazing book that should be mandatory reading for all weapons designers, I would recommend it to any student of human conflict or with in an interest in the social consequences of modern warfare. Would have rated it 5 stars, however there were a few places where I felt...See more
An amazing book that should be mandatory reading for all weapons designers, I would recommend it to any student of human conflict or with in an interest in the social consequences of modern warfare. Would have rated it 5 stars, however there were a few places where I felt the author could have done a bit more research, and perhaps did not in order to avoid contradicting anecdotal evidence. On the other hand, I am writing this with the benefit of hindsight, if I had read the book at its release I might have had a different impression.
An amazing book that should be mandatory reading for all weapons designers, I would recommend it to any student of human conflict or with in an interest in the social consequences of modern warfare. Would have rated it 5 stars, however there were a few places where I felt the author could have done a bit more research, and perhaps did not in order to avoid contradicting anecdotal evidence. On the other hand, I am writing this with the benefit of hindsight, if I had read the book at its release I might have had a different impression.
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Gaetano
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
E dopo?
Reviewed in Italy on April 24, 2021
Il capitolo su 1° Guerra Mondiale, su Stalingrad e quello sul Vietnam i migliori; gli altri lenti e sufficienti. Nel complesso un libro che risponde alla domanda “cosa resta dopo la battaglia?”
Il capitolo su 1° Guerra Mondiale, su Stalingrad e quello sul Vietnam i migliori; gli altri lenti e sufficienti.
Nel complesso un libro che risponde alla domanda “cosa resta dopo la battaglia?”
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Aftermath: The Remnants of War: From Landmines to Chemical Warfare--The Devastating Effects popular 2021 of Modern Combat sale

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Aftermath: The Remnants of War: From Landmines to Chemical Warfare--The Devastating Effects popular 2021 of Modern Combat sale