A Fine Line - military non fiction by J E Roth


When I picked it up, I almost dismissed it.  Another short narration, but subject struck me.  I read for next hour.  Interrupted, I finished it that night.
    Two days later, I was still thinking about experience.  Memorable components surfaced; I could not shake it.  Subject would not rest.  It never will.
    In this epistolary memoir of the Vietnam War era, Roth describes joining U. S. Coast Guard to serve country and to protest war.  As Roth passed through training and service assignments in Boston, Portland, Alaska, and Detroit, he sent letters home.  Through mail home, modern dialogue between Roth and son, and future family, Roth cracks a window.  Its panes do not reflect answers to the single story of country service because war.  Its panes do reflect reply to question.  Question is: when is killing for cause good excuse?

Share this: