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Thirteen Soldiers: A Personal History of…
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Thirteen Soldiers: A Personal History of Americans at War (2014)

by John McCain

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Epigraph
What battles have in common is human: the behaviors of men struggling to reconcile their instinct for  self-preservation, their sense of honor and the achievement of some aim over which other men are ready to kill them.  The study of battle is therefore always a study of fear  and usually of courage;  always of leadership, usually of obedience;  always of compulson, sometimes of insubordination; always of anxiety, sometimes  of elation or catharsis;  always of uncertainty and doubt, misinformation and misapprehension, usually also of faith and sometimes of vision;  always of violence, sometimes also of cruelty, self-sacrifice, compassion;  above all,  it always a study of solidarity.
--John Keegan,
The Face of Battle
Dedication
To the memory of Colonel George  "Bud" Day, USAF;

General James Robinson Risner, USAF;

Admiral Jeremiah A. Denton, USN;

and Captain Edwin A. Schuman, USN.

It was a privilege, gentlemen.
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Introduction:  Every Memorial Day at Arlington National Cemetery,  soldiers from the 3rd U.S.Infantry Brigade place small American flags at the headstones of more than three hundred thousand graves.
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