I’m an Oklahoma boy, born between the Second World War and the cold one. Grew up in a small town, second son of the local banker. Applied to Yale in the ’60s, got in, dropped out just in time for the war in Indochina, ended up in the army, deserted, went to Sweden.
Growing up I mostly played war. When I actually got involved in one, I didn’t care for it too much. By the time I deserted, I was grounded in a feeling that there was something wrong with wars, period. In Sweden, however, I found that the movement against my particular war was lead by Maoists who, as we now know, are about as pacifist as suicide bombers.
But there’s no accounting for politics, so I became a Maoist. This was the early ’70s in Göteborg, Sweden’s window to the West.