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When Wars Were Won

By Hugh Aaron

After forty years, Hal Arnold, a professor in English, returns to the Philippines yearning for the unity, spirit and optimism he knew as a 19 year old member of a Seabee battalion in the South Pacific theater during World War II. Trying to recapture that experience, he writes this story, vividly portraying members of the battalion who impacted his life.

Two in particular -- Barry Fortune, an irrepressible entrepreneur, and Roger ("Billard Ball") Billard, a philosophical, cynical college professor -- are at opposite poles in their attitudes toward life and their feelings toward their country. They are Hal's mentors and, despite their faults, his heroes. Proud of being an American, yet disillusioned with most of his companions whose deeds are often less than admirable in winning the war, Hal searches for his own identity. He finds it in the warm, rich culture of a Filipino village where love and dignity thrive among a people who have suffered under the Japanese yoke.

Paperback, 269 pages
Published by Stones Point Press
Publication date: October 1995
ISBN: 1882521021

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