The Importance of Telling War Stories
“War is not only a matter of equipment, artillery, group troops, or air force; it is largely a matter of spirit, or morale” – these are the words of Chinese revolutionary and military leader Chiang Kai-shek. Indeed, war is something deeper than a military show off. It is not just all about the guns and the war tanks. Behind every war are combatants with various stories to tell. These stories are what keeps the legacy of each war remembered.
Telling war stories is important not just because it keeps an account of the history of a war, but also because it teaches people about so many things. Weapons of War by Robert Wright, for example, is a war-themed book that has many stories and useful insights in it. It is a compilation of letters written by the author himself during his military service in Vietnam. In general, the stories in Weapons of War by Robert Wright tackle the importance of spirit, communication, and prayers, especially in difficult times. To know more about the importance of telling war stories, below are some of the reasons why war stories need to be told and read.
War stories help readers understand the reasons behind war
War does not occur without a reason. Regardless of its nature, there is always a reason behind every war. Those people who wage war against others always have a goal or purpose for doing so. Oftentimes, such purpose has something to do with either principle or self-interest. War can be political, social, or religious. History has proven that war is not something that arises out of a shallow conflict over what color should a cake be, but rather over who gets the bigger slice of the cake. In other words, the reasons behind war are often deep and significant.
War stories help people understand the depth and significance of these reasons behind war. War stories do not only narrate the events of a war in chronological order, but also explain how and why these events happen in the first place. More often than not, war stories make people understand not just the nature of war, but the nature and capacities of humans as well.
War stories humanize the combatants
Generally, people have a tendency to treat war combatants as either heroes or enemies. Soldiers, for example, are usually seen as the brave heroes who risk their lives in the forefront to defend their country or nationality. Rebels, on the other hand, are often seen as the nemeses who disrupt public order and safety. However, beyond these stereotypes, war combatants are actually all humans. They all their strengths and weaknesses, and they all have reasons for fighting.
War stories allow people to get a glimpse of these strengths, weaknesses, and reasons. They humanize the combatants. They keep the attention of people away from the common “heroes vs. enemies” narrative. In war stories, everyone, regardless of his or her role, is a human with a story to tell. In Weapons of War by Robert Wright, for example, the readers can see how the author is portrayed beyond his role as a soldier. More than a combatant fighting the Vietnam War, Robert Wright is described in his own book as a loving person who longs for his family and fiancé, and a spiritual warrior who turns to prayers during difficult situations.
War stories bring so much inspiration
The most important element of war stories is the inspiration that they bring. Indeed, war stories are stories with lessons. They are not just a narration of war, but also an illustration of life and its beauty and intricacies. Generally, war stories inspire people to be courageous, brave, and selfless. They convince people to always fight for what they believe is right. They teach them about so many things that one may not learn elsewhere.
In Weapons of War by Robert Wright, for example, the stories of war included in the book teach the readers about the importance of having the spirit and determination, of communicating, and of praying. These are some of the things that people usually neglect in their day-to-day lives. Ultimately, war stories inspire people to be better and more appreciative of the things that they often take for granted.
In summary, war stories are important because they help people understand the nature of war itself – why war happens, what drives combatants to go to war, and how war changes the way people live their lives. Indeed, war is more than just the show off of guns and ammunition. There are reasons behind war, and there are stories in each and every war. These stories often honor the courage and bravery of men and women who choose to fight for what they believe is right. These stories teach people about so many things in life. For all of these reasons, there is no question, war stories always need to be told and read indeed.