An American in the Basement: How America Treats its POWs/MIAs

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New book tells the story of the ordeal of U.S. Navy Captain “Spike” Speicher, left to die after he was shot down over Iraq, and the latest in a chain of betrayals and cover-ups that have cost many an American serviceman his life

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This thing cost a good man years of suffering and eventually his life, and it cost a wife her husband and children their father; there is no thank you or forgiveness for such a thing.

The ordeal of U.S. Navy Captain Michael Scott “Spike” Speicher, left to die after he was shot down over Iraq on January 17, 1991, is the latest in a chain of betrayals and cover-ups that have cost many an American serviceman his life.

Now, Speicher’s story can finally be told in all its sad and sordid detail. "An American in the Basement" documents his shameful abandonment by our government, along with the history of America’s prisoners of war and missing in action, dating back to our nation’s beginnings, and revealing for the first time information that the American public was never meant to know.

Secrets that kill people are hard to keep. For anyone with a conscience the guilt and pain of living with the burden of suppressed truth cannot be contained forever. When the author interviewed and counseled men and women who eventually tried to help Scott Speicher, she always thanked them on Scott’s behalf; but to many this was gut-wrenching. “If I were Scott I wouldn’t thank any of us who stood by and did nothing,” said a member of the evaluation team that convened immediately after Speicher was shot down on January 17, 1991 – the same group of military officers and “men in clothes” (civilians) who began the cover-up that sealed Scott Speicher’s fate.

“This thing cost a good man years of suffering and eventually his life, and it cost a wife her husband and children their father; there is no thank you or forgiveness for such a thing ... My motives aren’t pure, at best I’m trying to extinguish my own guilt; what’s done cannot be undone ... I never spoke a word to anyone until ... the guilt caught up with me and it was far too late. I will never be able to make up for the decision I made to forget and move along. I just try to honor him by being a good father, grandfather, husband, friend and countryman. Thank you so much for taking up this fight for those of us who wouldn’t.”

Servicemen and women, plus every parent, family member or friend of one, should seriously question the sincerity of the oft-repeated pledge made by their leaders and the military chain of command to do everything in their power to search for, locate, assist and recover all prisoners of war and missing in action. Amy Waters Yarsinske shows us through painstaking research and a true passion for justice that this pledge is, when politically inconvenient, just an empty promise.

Amy Waters Yarsinske has authored more than 55 nonfiction books, most of them spotlighting current affairs, the military, history and the environment. But it is Amy’s experience and expertise in the military, intelligence and with missing persons that has led to her being informally labeled “the P.O.W. Hunter.”

She is a member of the American Society of Journalists and Authors (ASJA), the Authors Guild, Investigative Reporters and Editors (IRE), WriterHouse, and the North Carolina Literary and Historical Association. She lives in Virginia.

–Review copies–
–Author availablity for interviews–

Contact: Kris Millegan at (800) 556-2012 or publisher@trineday.net

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Kris Millegan

Kris Millegan
TrineDay
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