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The Unknown Civilian by Antony Owen


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There is no doubting the profound intent and varied ambition of this collection.  Caught in the withering and implacable gaze of war, Owen refuses to flinch.  Like a surgeon intent on the truer cause, he peels away war’s more overt skin to expose, with a disarming unsentimentally, some of the less obvious aspects of conflict’s anatomy.                                 

        – Mario Petrucci


Feathers and scalpels, I thought, reading this collection on the train between Lancashire meetings about banning nuclear weapons and blocking London roads with Extinction Rebellion.  They caress, raising Goosebumps on my skin. And they cut, so sharp and swift and fine, I suddenly found my heart was bleeding.  Immersed in them from Nagasaki to Bergen-Belsen, and Palestine to Yemen, I was cut with the brutality and greed of war, and caressed by the humanity that continues to love and resist. I looked out at the rushing homes and fields and cried. 

        – Dr Rebecca E. Johnson 

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