From: Vietnam Veterans of America “Books In Review II”
Through Smoke-Teared Eyes: The Vietnam War I Fought (iUniverse, 293 pp., $21.95, paper; $3.99, e book) is a wonderfully written narrative of Pugh’s twelve months as an infantryman. It is heart-breakingly honest as Pugh brings the reader into his hooch and lives and walks you with him as he goes through the horror of combat with his unit, Company A of the 2nd Battalion of the 27th Infantry Regiment.
The book is important for several reasons. First, it is a written window into just one of the millions of kids our nation’s leaders sent to war under false premises and with false promises. Johnny Pugh was strong enough to write his story. He could easily have been one of thousands who were unable to write it. It is a book that needs to be sent to every politician as they consider sending young people to kill and maim in the name of freedom. For some, the book will be a hard read because it exposes many unpleasant truths. The truth of officers, poorly trained, and foggy missions leading to the deaths of friends for no apparent reason. The truth of fear of dying, fear of losing friends, fear of betrayal by those you think are friends. The fear of cowardice or defining courage. These are all in question as one reads Pugh’s story. Through it all, you see the mind of a young and innocent man grappling with the brutal reality of day-to-day living in the infantry in the Vietnam War. In the end this is a eulogy for Johnny Pugh all of his fellow infantrymen who served in the Vietnam War.
To see the full online review, visit the VVA Books in Review II website: https://vvabooks.wordpress.com/2018/06/24/through-smoke-teared-eyes-by-johnny-f-pugh/
From: MWSA (Military Writers Society of America) 2018 Dispatches:
In Through Smoke-Teared Eyes: The Vietnam War I Fought, Johnny F. Pugh offers a compelling and often riveting account of his experiences in Cu Chi, Vietnam through the eyes of a combat soldier and, later, as a veteran struggling with PTSD.
Pugh writes with a raw honesty of his wartime experiences and the traumatic personal results of his experience. He writes of the soldiers and officers of the war, their loss of innocence, their heroism, their cowardice. He pays particular homage to those who fought beside him.
This is an often sad but ultimately triumphant tale of one soldier finally overcoming the traumas of war. We should thank Pugh—and also his widow–for the immense effort it must have taken to compose and publish such an account.
By Nancy Arbuthnot (June 2018)
To see the full online review, visit the MWSA website: http://www.mwsadispatches.com/library/2018/through-smoke-teared-eyes
Through Smoke-Teared Eyes certainly brought a tear to my eye, and once I started reading, it was tough to put down. At the same time, it was sometimes hard to continue because of the emotional responses reading this book invoked. I have always enjoyed military history, especially WWII and the Vietnam War. And, I have read many books on these two topics, both non-fiction and fiction. This book is undoubtedly one of the best works I have read on the war in Vietnam because of the painfully brutal honesty contained within its pages.
Written by Johnny Pugh as a catharsis to deal with the demons of his past war experiences, Through Smoke-Teared Eyes: The Vietnam War I Fought, is a must-read, for anyone who wants to try and understand the enlisted army infantryman’s experience during the war in Vietnam.
by popular author D. C. Gilbert
To read the full online review in both English and Spanish, please visit D. C. Gilbert’s website: