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A journalist's eyewitness account of life on the front line in Afghanistan, including previously unpublished photographs and details of the experiences of soldiers from 13 different countries Between 2006 and 2009 journalist Nick Allen traveled to Afghanistan to "embed" himself with soldiers on the front line in the war against the Taliban. He was posted with military units from many countries, including Britain, the United States, Finland, Sweden, New Zealand, Denmark, and Estonia, and spent time with the Royal Gurhka Rifles, the U.S. Marine Corps, the 39th Combat Engineer Regiment, and the 506th Airborne of Band of Brothers fame. Here is his unrivaled first-hand account of military operations from the battlefields of Helmand and Kandahar, to the so-called "backwaters" of the Afghan conflict. It explores the daily existence of ordinary soldiers from around the world and their endurance of the drama, tragedy, boredom, and farce that characterizes war. This eyewitness portrayal of combat operations, reconstruction, and daily soldiering life faithfully reproduces the reality of life on the frontline and helps to answer the question What is the West doing there? 


Nick Allen is a journalist who spent time as a war correspondent in Afghanistan for a German news agency and has written for such publications as the Daily Telegraph, Der Frankfurter Allgemeine, the Guardian, the Moscow Times, Russian Life magazine, the Scotsman, and Der Spiegel magazine.