“[A]n important look at the plight of returning soldiers. . . . Dallaire’s work adds to a growing understanding of the special challenges and traumas faced by peacekeepers. . . . While the average person might not be inclined to read clinical literature, Dallaire offers something more: an honest, firsthand account—and from a general, no less.” —National Post
“Dallaire reveals an intriguing oxymoron: a poetic general; a soulful warrior.” —The Globe and Mail
“[E]xtraordinary book. . . . There is light in Waiting For First Light.” —Carol Off, CBC
“The courage and intensity of [his] revelations are deeply personal and unsettling. . . . But there is much here . . . to inspire and nurture hope. . . . Dallaire’s book is an eloquent cautionary tale about what can happen if PTSD goes unaddressed for too long. . . . This is a valuable and rare look into the soul of one who suffers from PTSD. On this merit alone it will stand as an important read.” —The Globe and Mail
“[B]rutally revealing. . . . Dallaire’s raw and emotionally devastating new book lays bare his own inner torment. . . . He is not a man given easily to spilling his guts. He wonders if his graphic honesty, stripping away veils that have hidden two decades of pain, will inspire contempt for his perceived weakness. . . . But he had a powerful motive to start digging. Service and duty matter more than anything else to Dallaire, and he could see how a description of his post-Africa life—the story of the other hell—could help fellow sufferers. . . . If PTSD has had a face in Canada over the last twenty years, it is Roméo Dallaire’s. His life story, in effect, is a personal history of how Canada, and the modern world in general, has responded to PTSD.” —Maclean’s
“[A]n important petition for a greater understanding of our returning veterans.” —National Post
“A stirring account from a tragic mission that crystallizes the necessity of ensuring invisible injuries are treated with the requisite resources, attention and time as those that are physical in nature. Bravo Zulu, General Dallaire. Canada, and the international community, thanks you for your leadership.” —Scott Maxwell, Executive Director, Wounded Warriors Canada
“I was left reeling by this book, overcome by shock, dismay, amazement. I’ve never read anything about post-traumatic stress quite so stark, honest and graphic. Roméo Dallaire bares his soul to the world . . . it’s an act of stunning courage and a literary tour de force.” —Stephen Lewis
“Roméo Dallaire’s PTSD, stemming from his experiences and peacekeeping responsibilities during the horrific Rwandan genocide, has affected all aspects of his life for the past twenty years. With brutal honesty and characteristically unsparing of himself, he shows the reader how PTSD has caused unshakable guilt, perennial insomnia, persistent distress, complicated family difficulties and spiritual angst. Although this book is about pain, it is not about despair. It is a triumph. His understanding of human suffering at a very personal and intense level has propelled him into his current role as a champion for many important humanitarian causes such as the plight of child soldiers. By looking his demons in the eye and holding that gaze despite institutional ignorance and inaction, General Dallaire has transformed the Canadian military so that servicemen and women with PTSD may now acquire the treatment and support they need. This book is a compelling, evocative, educational and riveting inspiration to all of us.” —Matthew J. Friedman MD, PhD
Senior Adviser (and former Executive Director), National Center for PTSD, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
Professor of Psychiatry and Pharmacology/Toxicology, Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth
About the Author
ROMÉO DALLAIRE is a retired lieutenant-general, retired Canadian senator, and celebrated humanitarian. In 1993, LGen Dallaire was appointed force commander for UNAMIR, where he bore witness to the Rwandan genocide. His Governor General's Literary Award-winning book, Shake Hands with the Devil, exposed the failures of the international community to stop that genocide. It has been turned into an Emmy Award-winning documentary as well as a feature film; it has also been entered into evidence in war crimes tribunals trying the perpetrators of the Rwandan genocide. Dallaire has received numerous honours and awards, including Officer of the Order of Canada in 2002 and the United Nations Association in Canada’s Pearson Peace Medal in 2005. His second book, They Fight Like Soldiers, They Die Like Children, was also a national bestseller. Since his retirement, he has become an outspoken advocate for human rights, mental health and war-affected children. He founded the Roméo Dallaire Child Soldiers Initiative, an organization committed to progressively ending the use of child soldiers worldwide through a security sector approach.
JESSICA DEE HUMPHREYS is co-author of the acclaimed bestsellers Child Soldier: How Boys and Girls are Used in War and They Fight Like Soldiers, They Die Like Children.