After The Fighting, The Writing

Every war has unintended consequences, and literature is usually one of them. The recent conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan have already begotten a shelf of new memoirs by soldiers and embedded journalists, documents that arrive months after the insta-news of cable and the Internet, but hit harder and go deeper.

The medal for perfect timing goes to Chris Mackey, whose The Interrogators (Little, Brown; 484 pages), written with journalist Greg Miller, recounts his experiences in Army intelligence, grilling Arab prisoners in Kandahar. Watching him agonize over the ethics of his techniques provides rare insight into a process that, in the wake...

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