Top Gun 2: What Might Have Been

Okay, so I’ve got a confession: I’m a veteran and a military nerd who doesn’t care for war movies. And it’s not because I’m anti-war, or because Hollywood doesn’t “get” us vets, or because the movies trigger PTSD: no, I just don’t care for them because they’re too obvious and in your face. We get …

To my Cat, on the Occasion of his Parting

This wasn't supposed to be this hard to write. I'd thought about writing this weeks ago, and it all seemed to flow so well. That was before emotion got involved. See, emotion can be a blessing and a curse. It can tie your reader to your story and get them involved. But it can also …

Skywalker on Trial: the Galactic Code of Military Justice

Scene: Galactic Courtroom. Defendant seems blissfully unaware of what’s going on, keeps talking about his training with a “Yoda.” Judge: “Commander Skywalker, let’s walk through the events that occurred during the Battle of Hoth, shall we?” Commander Skywalker: “Sure, it’s all the same to me, but I’m kind of busy and --” Judge: “Commander, this …

Anatomy of a World War I Artillery Barrage

A lot has been said about the role of artillery in World War I, in both its intensity and ferocity. On the opening day of the Somme on July 1, 1916, British guns hurled 250,000 high explosive and shrapnel shells towards German positions. During the beginning of the Battle of Passchendaele in 1917, over 3,000 …