Book: Green Card Soldier by Bruce Zielsdorfcategories: Book, Historic Adventure, Green Card, Immigration, Naturalization, Citizenship, Bosnia, Sarajevo, New York, Balkans, Serbia, Croatia, Soldier
Bruce Zielsdorfabout this book: Set amidst the civil war-ravaged Balkans of the early 1990s, my novel – Green Card Soldier – fuses fact with fiction to tell the story of Andro Babich, a naïve Bosnian teen soccer star who escapes to America where he earns refugee status. He then receives a "green card" and joins the U.S. Army – ultimately earning his citizenship and a new life.
As for me, the author, I'm a 23-year Air Force veteran and retired Army civilian public affairs specialist. This is an historic novel based on true events. I'm convinced a lot of people are intrigued by the military's citizenship program and want to learn more. Andro's story personifies the tens of thousands of refugees who have served the nation as non-citizens.
According to the Defense Department, there are currently 30,000-plus non-citizens (about 1.6 percent of the force) serving on active duty. More than 4,100 of these unique Soldiers deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan in all branches of the U.S. military. On March 21, 2003, Marine Lance Cpl. Jose Gutierrez – a Guatemalan native and "green card" soldier – was the first U.S. service member killed in the Iraq war.
Since the Revolutionary War, it's not been uncommon for refugees to take pride in America and want to show their patriotism by serving. Although newspaper, magazine and blog coverage of "green card" troops has been extensive, little has been done to tell the story through the heart and mind of a Green Card Soldier. Through this literary voyage, that's what I attempt to do.
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Video 1: Green Card Soldier by Bruce Zielsdorf
Video 2: Soldiers naturalized in Texas
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