When the planes flew into Twin Towers many Americans were sporting bumper stickers that said "These colors don't run." When it all came down, Ryan Smithson enlisted. From Basic Training to the war zone, he talks openly about the good, the bad, and the ugly of the war in Iraq. He doesn't debate the politics and he doesn't feed the stereotypes. Instead he talks about the good that the US military is doing--the good that few people hear because it just isn't as exciting as the car bombs. In a story as gritty as the sand that surrounded him, he talks about what it was like to weld thin Haji armor onto the convoy vehicles, sweep for mines the fast way rather than the right way, and to clean the human remains out of a Humvee that was attacked by terrorists. These anecdotes (stories) are told side by side with other stories of protecting a village from terrorist kidnappings and what it is like to see a child get tears in his eyes because he is given a clean drink of water.