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Author to Discuss ‘The Real American War in Vietnam’ April 22 at Cal Poly

Award-winning journalist, historian and author Nick Turse will present “The Real American War in Vietnam” at 6 p.m. Tuesday, April 22, in Room 123 in the Bioresource & Agriculture Engineering Building (No. 8) at Cal Poly.

The talk will focus on topics Turse wrote about in his critically acclaimed book, “Kill Anything that Moves.”

In the book, Turse asserts that Americans have long been taught that events such as the notorious My Lai massacre were isolated incidents in the Vietnam War, carried out by a few “bad apples.” But through a groundbreaking investigation, Turse discovered the violence against Vietnamese civilians was not at all exceptional during the conflict. Rather, it was pervasive and systematic, the consequence of official orders to “kill anything that moves.”

Turse is also the author of “The Complex,” the managing editor for, and a fellow at the Nation Institute, a nonprofit media center dedicated to strengthening the independent press and advancing social justice and civil rights. 

Turse’s investigations of American war crimes in Vietnam have gained him a Ridenhour Prize for Reportorial Distinction, a Guggenheim fellowship, and a fellowship at Harvard University’s Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study. Additionally, he was the recent recipient of the prestigious Izzy Award from the Park Center for Independent Media.

The presentation is free and open to the public. It is co-sponsored by the College of Liberal Arts’ Doyle Fund and the departments of Ethnic Studies, History, Journalism and Political Science.

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