Sergeant Jackson rests wearily as his squad searches a home during a raid in Rawah, a restive Sunni town near the Syrian border. Most raids occur on residential homes, where the suspected insurgents live with their families. Because the raids are usually carried out late at night, the suspect is often sleeping together with his family, usually on padded mats in a communal room. The raids are abrupt, and generally the men are restrained before they can react. However, the intelligence is often faulty. The targets of the raid were apprehended in perhaps 15% of the dozens of raids I witnessed, leaving most victims terrified and angry. Sometimes the commanding officer would compensate for the damage and misery on the spot, extracting a wad of soiled dinars or dollars and pressing them into hesitant hands. Other times, they would simply leave in search of the proper target, or return to base before insurgents had the chance to organize and attack them.
Disco Night Sept. 11 is a chronicle of America's wars from 2006-2013. The photographs shift back and forth from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan to the USA, unsparingly capturing the violent, ceaseless cost, but also the mystery and the madness, the beauty and absurdity at the core of each conflict. The narrative is complemented by nineteen gatefolds which elaborate on places and individuals.
Photographs are fragments, sometimes only loosely tied to important experiences. An extensive text records some of the missing pieces. The stories that precede and follow the moment of the photograph, conversations with soldiers, anonymous graffiti that's part confession, part boast.
Disco Night Sept. 11 is an expansive yet intimate account of this defining era of history.
Dimensions: 8.5" x 10.5" | Pages: 276 including 19 Gatefolds | Photographs: 188 | Designer: Yolanda Cuomo Design