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Free read Цинковые мальчики ´ eBook, ePUB or Kindle PDF ´ [PDF] ✩ Цинковые мальчики Author Svetlana Alexievich – Dogsalonbristol.co.uk Oddziały radzieckie przez dziesięć lat „udzielały narodowi afgańskiemu braterskiej pomocy” Od 1979 do 1989 roku życie strA odwaga i braterstwo przeplatają się z niegodziwością i okrucieństwem „W każdej kolejnej książce z uporem robię to samo – pisze Aleksijewicz – zmniejszam historię do wymiarów człowieka”Po publikacji książki Swietłana Aleksijewicz została pozwana o znieważenie honoru i godności żołnierzy walczących w Afganistani. ‘I cried when I read your article but I shan’t read the whole book because of an elementary sense of self preservation I’m not sure whether we ought to know so much about ourselves Perhaps it’s just too frightening It leaves a great void in my soul You begin to lose faith in your fellow man and fear him instead’ This is the second book I have that is written by Svetlana Alexievich and her books really do make me wonder about why I read On one hand her books are about truth and plain ugly truth at that which needs to be told or it would be suppressed and thus exactly the kind of books that should be read on the priority basis On other hand her books are so depressing being full of accounts of lost and wasted lives; making one wonder whether there really is any point in reading themThough not as depressing as Chernobyl diaries this one is full of sad accounts of all those whose lives were ruined in Afghanistan including accounts of soldiers who lost their limbs mothers and wives of soldiers who lost their lives the traumatic experiences of women who were sent there as nurses etc The name of the book comes from the Zinc coffins in which the Russian soldiers who died in Afghanistan war were brought back home in an effort by the Soviet government to maintain secrecy about the existence of a conflict And it is Zincy Boys because they were really boys too young to understand life at all many still mamma's boys And though they were forced to go there through coercion or fraud they and their families still have to deal with prejudice of people who hold them responsible for the war They try to get together because no one who wasn't in the war could understand them In the eight years since the war the number of suicides officers as well as other ranks is about the same as the number of fatalities in the war itself” The worst parts are those where an account of a compassionate soldier or nurse contains details of Afghan Children who lost his or her limbs or life in war I drove to a hospital for Afghan civilians with a group of nurses – we brought presents for the children Toys candy cookies I had about five teddy bears We arrived at the hospital along barracks No one has than a blanket for bedding A young Afghan woman approached me holding a child in her arms She wanted to say something – over the last ten years almost everyone here has learned to speak a little Russian – and I handed the child a toy which he took with his teeth Why his teeth I asked in surprise She pulled the blanket off his tiny body – the little boy was missing both arms It was when your Russians bombed Someone held me up as I began to fall The introduction focuses on the similarities between the Vietnam war and Afghanistan war In both cases a government of one of the most powerful countries of the time decides to wage a useless war and forced or frauded her boys the ones who were not rich enough to pay their way out of it into going to fight in a third world country that was fighting for its independence Moreover in both cases people of the attacking countries didn't support the warIt is tragic how people are uick to jump to conclusions that wars are the only solutions to most international conflicts Why is it that seventeen and eighteen year olds find it easier to kill than thirty year olds for example Because they have no pity that’s why When the war was over I noticed how violent fairytales were People are always killing each other Baba Yaga even roasts them in her oven but the children are never frightened They hardly ever even cry Of course most of these people have never been to an actual war themselves And this kind of books are solutions to their ignorance This is what a textbook on history should be like instead of a book that makes you learn things like strategies each side employed or why a particular side won or which General or major won which battle I kind of don't understand how can anyone with open mind continue to justify any of those the need for war need for armies and need for the feeling of nationalism which if you think about it is just a fancy name for tribalism I had my son’s stone engraved with these words “Remember friends he died that the living might live” I know now that that was not true he did not die for the sake of the living I was lied to when I was young and continued the process with him We were so good at believing “Love the Motherland son she’ll never betray you and love you always” I used to repeat to him Now I would like to write something different on his grave “Why” ’ A motherMore uotes ‘I was on holiday by the Black Sea and saw a few young lads crawling over the sand to get to the water I didn’t go to the beach any I’d just have started crying They were laughing and trying to flirt with us girls but we all ran away from themUntil I 988 Soviet psychologists had never heard of PTSD until American psychologists expert with post war trauma visited and told them Up till then their answer was behavior modification with drugs the way Soviet psychiatry had always dealt with mental illnessA boy might be blown up by a mine and there’d be nothing left except half a bucket of flesh but we wrote that he’d died of food poisoning or in a car accident or he’d fallen into a ravineWe wanted to shut the doors so no one would hear because there were soldiers dying alone next door boys with no one to weep for them ‘Mum Mum’ they’d shout and I’d lie to them ‘I’m here’ We became their mothers and sisters and we wanted to be worthy of their trustNowadays I don’t just hate war I can’t even stand seeing a couple of boys having a scrap in the park And please don’t tell me the war’s over now In summer when I breathe in the hot dusty air or see a pool of stagnant water or smell the dry flowers in the fields it’s like a punch in the head I’ll be haunted by Afghanistan for the rest of my life When we went on a raid we’d pin a note to the upper part of our body and another to the lower part so that if we were blown up by a mine one or the other would be found Or else we wore bracelets with our name number and blood group engraved on them We never said ‘I’m going ’ always ‘I’ve been sent ’ And we never said the word ‘last’‘Let’s go and have a last drink’‘Could you have refused to go to Afghanistan’ Me personally Only one of our group of professional army officers Major Bondarenko a battery commander refused The first thing that happened was he had to face a ‘court of honor’ which convicted him of cowardice Can you imagine what that does to a man’s self esteem

Summary · eBook, ePUB or Kindle PDF ´ Svetlana Alexievich

Oddziały radzieckie przez dziesięć lat „udzielały narodowi afgańskiemu braterskiej pomocy” Od do roku życie straciło co najmniej kilkaset tysięcy Afgańczyków a kilkadziesiąt tysięcy radzieckich żołnierzy poniosło śmierć lub zostało rannych Wyjeżdżali by zostać bohaterami Do kraju wracali jako bankruci – bez nóg be. I remember back in the '70s having to sit through long presentations regarding the Soviet Union and the military might thereof These briefings were given by American military personnel and the general theme was that the Soviet Union was an evil empire armed to the teeth It seemed that they had endless munitions and hordes of personnel under arms all of whom wanted our stuff They had no stuff in the Soviet Union we were told and they would be coveting our stuff which we had in abundance Some of this propaganda had a grain of truth in it the Soviets were starved for consumer goods and they did have a lot of men under arms but the weaponry was outdated and defective and the soldiery reluctant and usually coerced into service And while there was a shortage of consumer goods even the most fashion conscious was unlikely to risk death for a pair of jeans Somehow the people doing the briefings neglected to mention that part In short while the Soviet Union had enough punch to mess the world up considerably they were extremely unlikely to start anything military bombast notwithstandingAfter the invasion of Afghanistan I recall even anti Soviet propaganda One US based military magazine sought donations to purchase ammo for the mujahidin If I recall correctly the slogan was Kill a commie for Mommy or some such blather I have often wondered if anyone ever contributed and if so whether any of the contribution actually made it to Afghanistan I guess what I'm getting at with all of this preamble is that we were pretty much brainwashed into an intense dislike of all things SovietThis book is the result of many personal interviews the author conducted with returned soldiers and civilians and also with the next of kin of those who were returned in zinc coffins or zinky boys as they became known Alexievich has managed to put a human face on the Soviet soldier for me and I have come to realize that soldiers are soldiers the world over Our governments start wars and governments legislate soldiers into action whether the soldier likes it or notIn the case of the Russians many of them were told that their intervention in Afghanistan prevented the takeover of the country by the USA which was on the point of invading Many soldiers were told they were being airlifted to some other destination only to find themselves in Afghanistan when the plane touched down Some volunteered for the job as the bazaars in Afghanistan had consumer goods than the Soviet shops Ponder that for a moment; a backwater like Afghanistan having produce than your home countryLife was hard for these soldiers The Soviet army turned a blind eye to the constant hazing and abuse of recruits New soldiers were routinely robbed and beaten by the older soldiers or grandfathers An excerpt from a soldier's letter home Mum buy me a puppy and call it Sergeant so I can kill it when I get home p46Even the female civilian employees were not free from abuse They volunteered for service; some for patriotic reasons some for the extra pay and yet others for the shopping opportunities Whatever their motivation they were universally assumed to have come hunting for men Sadly many of them felt a need to take on a man as protection against the predations of others Better one devil you know than many you don'tAlexeivich has really been able to express the anguish and heartache of those who came back to a country that was so neglectful that Afghanistan casualties Zinky Boys were not allowed to be buried in the same section of a cemetery like they were a collective dirty secret I won't even go into the sense of loss and betrayal expressed by grieving mothers who were never given adeuate details regarding the death of their respective children In spite of this the reaction to the author's work was mixed and I leave you with this final uote from a call she received Who needs your dreadful truth I don't want to know it You want to buy your own glory at the expense of our sons' blood They were heroes heroes heroes They should have beautiful books written about them and you're turning them into mincemeat p187

Free read Цинковые мальчики

Цинковые мальчикиZ rąk bez złudzeń z koszmarami które miały ich nigdy nie opuścić Niektórzy wracali w cynkowych trumnachZ opowieści weteranów pielęgniarek prostytutek matek i żon „afgańców” wyłania się wstrząsający obraz niepotrzebnej wojny wśród zapierających dech w piersiach afgańskich krajobrazów rozgrywają się ludzkie dramaty. What made this book so powerful so heartbreaking was its simplicity In Zinky Boys Russian journalist Svetlana Alexievich interviews the mothers widows civilians and soldiers whose lives were destroyed by the USSR's ten year war in Afghanistan The 197 pages are filled with dozens of short interviews which left me close to tears depressed imagining myself burying a son or thinking what it would take to kill without judgmentPage 23 An army nurse recalls Sometimes we massacred a whole village in revenge for one of our boys I remember one girl lying in the dust like a broken doll with no arms and no legs And yet we went on being surprised they didn't love usWhat a uote And yet we went on being surprised they didn't love us Some of the stories are stuck in my head A soldier leaping into a trench and onto a mine His legs were blown off Soldiers admitting they massacred civilians in senseless acts of revenge Their confessions to Alexievich how they turned into animals how they can longer look at a woman how some wish they could shoot anyone who looks at them the wrong way on the street Those who survived saw their humanity killed off The Soviet Union destroyed Afghanistan The exact number of lives lost never will be known but the estimates of Afghan dead are staggering The Soviets lost at least 15000 men Men I should say boys Many were conscripts 18 to 20 years old who had little military experience were given unlimited guns and ammo and learned to kill everything that moved Alas zinky boys The bodies of the Soviet soldiers were shipped home in zinc coffinsI can picture one of those coffins concealing the maimed body of a Russian teenager lying in a drab flat in Moscow a mother draping her body over it crying out for her son Page 32 A mother whose son was killed doing his international duty to defend the Motherland I can't carry on any longer I just can't I've been dying for two years now I'm not ill but I'm dying My whole body is dead I suppose we're already dead but nobody knowsPage 53 A mother They brought in the coffin I collapsed over it I wanted to lay him out but they wouldn't allow us to open the coffin to see him Now I just want to be in the coffin with him I go to the cemetery throw myself on the gravestone and cuddle himThere are a couple common themes running through all the interviews One is betrayal Nearly all the soldiers and civilians who served in Afghanistan tell Alexievich they believed they were sent to Afghanistan to do good They were there to defend an ideology to defend Russia's borders to help the Afghan people see the truth of socialism After experiencing the horrors of war they begin to uestion When they return home often without eyes legs andor arms they feel an array of emotions pride revulsion guilt sadness longing for love and comradeship bonds some mythically believed had been found in the filth of the front lines And betrayal Many of the boys again think 18 to 20 year olds deflect responsibility for their war crimes and place it on the monstrous Soviet government They resent the criticism launched at them by a public that has also finally learned the truth Moscow tried to keep secret the average yearly deployment of 100000 Soviet troops; when the zinc coffins started coming home people began to understand what really was happeningSome clung to hopePage 43 Sergeant Major I accepted the official line so completely that even now after all I've read and heard I still have a minute hope that our lives weren't entirely wastedTragedy struck than once Families were lied to about their sons' whereabouts in some cases even the soldiers weren't sure where they were headed Then the war wrecked their bodies and minds and tortured their emotional lives When the soldiers returned home alive or in a zinc coffin they and their families were run over again by the shame of fighting in what many began to see as a dirty useless war Yet the war's transformational power wasn't only destructive Some soldiers admitted longing for what they had in Afghanistan that they could never get again at home the test of their mortality the challenge to overcome hardship the bonds with their fellow men at arms This positive feeling pales in comparison to the overwhelmingly negative vibe that pours from the pages but it is remarkable nonetheless This feeling reminded me of John Keegan's final paragraph in his one volume study of WWI on the mystery of that war It might be said of many wars If we could understand its loves as well as its hates we would be nearer understanding the mystery of human lifeAlexievich also received many letters from readers which make up the final pages of Zinky Boys Some thanked her; others excoriated her for reporting the truth You can sense some Russians felt liberated at finally being able to criticize their government for finally being able to learn the truth while at the same time being tugged the other way by guilt and shameI could not fathom how some Russian civilians blamed themselves for the war In a country where the people had no say had no access to information about what was going on In a nation run by a monstrous government that forced mothers to bury their sons at night so few people would take notice Zinky Boys made me reflect on my own responsibility living in a free nation with access to information It is a heavy uestion to consider The book provides an interesting comparison to the US and its current wars in Ira and Afghanistan if you are self secure enough to walk down that pathDon't we also believe we are doing good Don't we also believe we know what's best for others Don't we also find all kinds of ways to deflect responsibility or rationalize brutal behavior Don't we all have contradictory feelings tugging inside us just like the soldiers interviewed by Alexievich They hated their country for what it made them do but some didn't necessarily hate what they did Others did feel the burden of war crimesAnd what is it about war the most destructive force on earth that provides an opportunity to do the most productive self reflectionThanks to Naeem for recommending a book that got me thinking even and asking uestions so that I may continue to dance with my doubtFive stars for Zinky Boys a shattering book