Army Reserve Specialist Michael Anthony discusses his book, Mass Casualties: A Young Medic’s True Story of Death, Deception, and Dishonor in Iraq on this episode of the Medical Author Chat podcast. Michael was an operating room technician in the Iraq War. His tour was from October 2006 to October 2007. During that time he worked in two hospitals. First in Mosul and then in the Al Anbar Province. He kept a journal throughout his tour that became the basis of his book.
During our interview Michael explains why he wrote a book about what life was really like for him and many of the soldiers in his unit. Michael had preconceived conceptions about war based on the experiences of four older brothers that were in the military and watching lots of war movies. He was surprised to find out that many of those preconceptions were wrong and he was serving with “regular people” that were like him.
Michael and I also talked about the struggles many veterans have returning to life at home and work. Michael describes that every day eighteen veterans in the United States commit suicide and one in three homeless Americans are veterans. Michael came home from Iraq with his own emotional problems and addictions. He explains that what helped him “was having something to focus on” which was writing the book. He also discussed the importance of vets being able to talk to other vets and participate in veteran run treatment programs.