The Equator Line - January - March 2015 War : The Human Cost
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Leaving the Wars Behind My earliest memories of war were olive-coloured military trucks trundling down the road towards the border of what was then East Pakistan. Grim looking soldiers – their helmets camouflaged – held their guns in absolute concentration, indefatigably alert. Children, often holding the elders’ hands, lined up along the road to cheer the men in uniform. Barely five years old, I was one of them. The year was 1965. In the uneasy blacked-out evenings, some of our neighbours would sit in a circle in our front room for the news. Our black Murphy radio with its blue magic eye, placed on a shelf above, was a clear sign of our relative affluence. In a Calcutta suburb, every home did not have a radio in those days. Almost the entire news bulletin was about the heavy losses and retreat of the enemy. The men in the room would start a debate in no time about the prospects of the Indian Army.
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