First published on Facebook on 15 April 2011
A graphic novel about one soldier’s return from Afghanistan
Story: Rodge Glass Art: Dave Turbitt
Just been re-reading it and looking at the extras. Very powerful ending. The publisher credits Charley’s War as one of the inspirations and I’m delighted it helped make this book possible. Frankly, Dougie’s War is the only new anti-war graphic novel out there and the only genuine successor to Charley’s War – apart from Steve Beeny’s Rebellion 1920 about the first British invasion of Iraq – when Churchill authorised poison gas to be dropped on the Kurds, just like Sadam Hussein. (Of course when Sadam Husssein did it, it was evil. When Churchill did it, it was regrettable but okay.)
Anyway, back to Dougie’s War: it’s excellent and focuses in particular on post-traumatic stress disorder which is a fact of life for many vets. There’s a section from Charley’s War printed with it, covering the same subject. I’m delighted to recommend it. Too many “War is Hell” films and comics masquerade as anti-war stories. They’re not. E.g. Full Metal Jacket and Apocalypse Now were watched by US soldiers to psyche them up before they invaded Iraq. No-one could read Charley’s War or Dougie’s War and want to invade anyone and that means they’ve done their job.
If you’ve come across any friends or relatives with PTSD, this book has particular relevance. There’s a help section at the back with phone numbers.
It’s embarrassing to admit that there are no other graphic novels about our modern colonisations of other countries. In comics, we usually stick to science fiction and men in tights. Hopefully Dougie’s War might inspire others to write and draw something on the subject and expose what we’re really doing in the Middle East.