When the 506th Infantry Regiment—known since World War II as the Band of Brothers—returned to Colorado Springs after their first tour in Iraq, a series of brutal crimes swept through the city. The Band of Brothers had been deployed to the most violent places in Iraq, and some of the soldiers were suffering from what they had seen and done in combat. Without much time to recover, they were sent back to the front lines. After their second tour of duty, the battalion was renamed the Lethal Warriors, and, true to their name, the soldiers once again brought the violence home.
Lethal Warriors brings to life the chilling true stories of these veterans—from their enlistment and multiple tours of duty to their struggles with ptsd and their failure to reintegrate in society. With piercing insight and employing his relentless investigative skills, journalist David Philipps shines a light not only to this particular unit, but also to the painful reality of ptsd as it rages throughout the country.
By exploring the evolving the science and the stigma of war trauma throughout history—from “shell shock” to “battle fatigue” to “combat stress injuries”—Philipps shows that this problem has always existed and that, as the nature of warfare changes, it is only getting worse. In highlighting the inspiring stories of the resilient men and women in the armed forces who have the courage to confront the issue and offer a potential lifeline to the soldiers, Lethal Warriors challenges us to deal openly, honestly, and intelligently with the true costs of war.
Praise for Lethal Warriors:
"When the war started, almost a decade ago, we were told we had to fight it in Iraq and Afghanistan so that we wouldn't have to fight it at home. But as our soldiers return from battle, it has become increasingly clear that they are bringing the trauma of war to our doorstep. In exploring the creeping effects of PTSD and its heart wrenching consequences on our veterans, and on our society at large, Philipps' book is a clarion call to both support our troops and to think twice when assessing the true costs of war."-- Susan Sarandon
"This important and compassionate book will save lives. I found myself weeping with sympathy and sadness for both the murderers and their victims, and boiling with anger at the chain of neglect and ignorance, within and outside of the military, that led to murders that could have been avoided. This book needs to be read by the families of every returning combat veteran. It needs to be read by professionals in mental health institutions, the military, departments of veterans’ affairs, and all leaders who care for the safety of their communities. It needs to be read by all of us who care about those who faithfully served those communities in war and returned forever changed." -- Karl Marlantes, bestselling author of Matterhorn
"Even for the survivors of close combat, the emotional impact can be devastating. David Philipps' heartbreaking book is a detailed and tragic record of this impact, and the Army's and society's struggles to deal with the consequences. Every American should read this book -- it is that significant for our Army, and for our country. " -- General Wesley K. Clark (ret.)
Praise for Dave Phillipps and “Casualties of War,” published in July 2009 in the Colorado Springs Gazette:
“Staggering, gruesome and heartbreaking.” -- On the Media, National Public Radio
“Jaw-dropping.” -- Kyra Phillips, CNN