The author of Spoils recalls his troubling time serving with the US army, and the uneasy process of translating his experience into fiction
Fourteen years since the US invaded Iraq, and 13 since he served there with the US army, soldier-turned-author Brian Van Reet remains conflicted about the war.
“On the one hand, I view the war as a whole as an evil thing,” he says. “It was unnecessary, it caused a massive amount of suffering and there’s something evil about that. I don’t think of myself as evil, but I participated in a bigger event that could be considered evil. I haven’t figured out how to resolve that.”