R225.00 ZAR
Add to wishlist

A young doctor is forced to face the Border War when he can no longer escape the call-up. With only a few weeks' training in this field, Anthony Feinstein is thrust into the army's psychiatric unit. Battle scarred is his revealing account of his experiences treating bossies soldiers and all manner of war -induced psychosis in a largely hostile environment. He starts out at 1 Military Hospital in Pretoria where his first patients are talking to the stars or claiming to be Jesus. Next, he is dispatched to Oshakati, home to the largest military base in the war zone, to screen troops for post-traumatic stress disorder. He steps into a world of alcoholism, insomnia, family violence and venereal disease. The consequences of war and the idiosyncrasies of army life present themselves in strange ailments.

Chilling stories are told not only by the conscripts, but also by the wives of the permanent force soldiers who live on the base. During a stint at an outpost manned by Koevoet, Feinstein experiences the soldiers' shocking cruelty – and what it does to their psyche. This honest personal account sheds light on the widespread but seldom talked about fall-out from the Border War. It demands to be read, not only by the thousands of ex-soldiers still carrying the invisible scars, but by all South Africans.

Paperback, 208 pages