Just announced on Monday, Konami's upcoming Iraq War game Six Days in Fallujah is already into its third day of controversy.
Yesterday, GamePolitics reported on concerns expressed by several critics in the U.K., including a decorated former army colonel and the father of a Royal Marine who was killed in Iraq.
Today's interview with Dan Rosenthal is a little closer to home. Actually, make that a lot closer to home.
Dan (left) is a veteran of the Iraq War. He's a longtime gamer. He's also a law student and edits the excellent gameslaw.net blog, which we cite with regularity here on GamePolitics. I first met Dan at PAX 08. He attended GDC last month on on IGDA scholarship. So when he speaks from the heart about his war experience and his feelings about Six Days in Fallujah, I listen. As it happened, yesterday Dan and I interacted on Twitter about Konami's controversial game. Afterward, Dan was gracious enough to consent to this interview:
GP: Dan, when were you in Iraq? What unit did you serve with?
DR: I served in the U.S. Army, 3rd Battalion 124th Infantry Regiment... Our unit was based out of Florida with the Florida National Guard, but during our time in Iraq we were attached to several units... I arrived in Kuwait in February 2003, participated in the invasion of Iraq in March, and left around a year later.
GP: Where were you stationed for the bulk of your Iraq tour?
DR: During the invasion, we drove upwards through southern Iraq, helped secure the area around Nasiriyah, then moved northward and conducted operations out of Baghdad for the remainder of the time... If you've ever seen the movie Gunner Palace, that base was a few hundred meters away from our compound, a former Republican Guard general officer's quarters.
GP: Did you see any combat?