Happy Dog Days, y'all. Thought I would catch you up on some of the things I've been doing over at Biographile. I interviewed Vicki Croke, author of Elephant Company, the incredible story of how one man and his parade of Asian elephants helped the Allied cause in World War II. Next up, I looked back with Bill Buford about his years hanging out with soccer hooligans deftly told in Among the Thugs, and then I wrote an ode to ice pops. (Yes, popsicles, but trademarks...)Summer's greatest treat.
Stay cool, my friends. And find some A/C while you're at it. Vacation beckons.
Now, I have to decide if I want to want to become a full-time soccerhead. I posed the question as my first piece for Vice Sports.
I spoke with Pulitzer-Prize winning author Kai Bird about The Good Spy, the story of Robert Ames, an unsung American hero who dedicated his clandestine life to the Middle East. It's thrilling, like Ian Fleming meets Lawrence of Arabia. The Biographile interview was edited for length, but I thought Bird had some interesting things to say about Ames regarding Israel, internal CIA debates, and Osama bin Laden. It's the director's cut, enjoy.
(FYI: it's worth checking out the HuffPo comments section for this piece. There's a number of notes from veterans and parents of wounded soldiers.)
(Photo copyright @Nina Berman. All rights reserved.)
No matter what new technologies develop, singular photos always seem to provide the lasting images that sum up wars on the whole. Matthew Brady's shots at Antietam brought the horror and carnage of the Civil War home, the V-J Day "Kiss" captured the euphoria and relief of the end of the "good war," and the terrifying "Napalm Girl" displayed the barbarity of modern weaponry unleashed on a civilian populace.