Writing about war crimes in an American war fought nearly 50 years ago is a thankless task for a journalist. But it is a subject that is more relevant than ever as the United States gears up for permanent global war in which U.S. troops may be sent to fight simultaneously in several Islamic countries. What really happened in Vietnam holds profound significance for understanding how the U.S. military operates.

That is why Nick Turse’s new book “Kill Anything That Moves” deserves the attention of activists in particular. It is the first real scholarly book on this subject.