Hidden Wounds

Hidden Wounds by dEUS and Prospektor is an interactive music documentary on post-traumatic stress disorder.

While the Western world has been at peace for almost 70 years, young soldiers leave for new fronts. After their tour of duty they return to a society in which they often struggle to adapt. Hidden Wounds tells the story of more than 20 of these veterans. Although their experiences differ, they are all scarred by the same hidden wounds.

Dive into their life stories by clicking the icons below the video.


Dan Hofman, 60 (USA)



    Twenty-four veterans suffering from PTSD share their stories. They talk about their youth, war experiences and struggle to cope with PTSD. The stories are their testimonials of what the disorder is and how it impacts their lives and the lives of those around them. No testimonial is the same, but the symptoms the veterans display are alarmingly similar: a sense of being disconnected from society, feeling misunderstood and lost. Sufferers often have low self-esteem, are aggressive, depressed and in a constant state of hyper alertness. Some still struggle on a daily basis to deal with their PTSD, while others have sought help and are slowly recovering.

    Whether in Vietnam, Somalia, Bosnia-Herzegovina or Iraq, on a combat or peace mission, a recent tour or one that took place years ago, experience of war can lead to severe emotional problems, also later in life. You might recognize these problems in someone you know. Listening to these veterans’ stories may be the beginning of finding a solution.

  • Willie Roberts, 47 (USA)

    Iraq, Somalia, Bosnia, Kosovo, Iraq, Haiti, Afghanistan

    Struggled with PTSD after serving in Iraq, Somalia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Kosovo, Iraq, Haiti and Afghanistan, and would have killed himself if he hadn't had RC, his dog.

  • Anke Dorpmanns, 29 (NL)

    Bosnia-Herzegovina, Iraq

    Felt immortal at 18, during tours in Bosnia-Herzegovina and Iraq, but couldn't adjust to life back home.

  • Dan Hoffman, 60 (USA)


    Fought in the last battle of the Vietnam War. Remembers sitting at home afterwards, thinking about blowing his head off.

  • Dave Adams, 50 (UK)

    Northern Ireland, Iraq, Bosnia, Iraq

    Blacked out, attacked his wife and smashed his house to pieces after serving in Northern Ireland, Iraq and Bosnia-Herzegovina.

  • David de Bats, 40 (BE)


    Couldn't cope with leaving the military regime after serving in Somalia.

  • Gary Phillips, 69 (USA)


    Grew up in the United States drinking milk shakes, but returned from Vietnam a killer.

  • Harry Flusher, 89 (UK)

    World War II

    Accidently bombed German civilians during World War II.

  • Jean Limbourg, 53 (NL)

    Cambodia, Bosnia-Herzegovina

    Became emotionally numb while serving in Cambodia and Bosnia-Herzegovina.

  • Johan Bruurmijn, 43 (NL)


    Was unable to help the heavily wounded in Kosovo.

  • Johan de Jonge, 39 (NL)


    Was taken hostage in Bosnia-Herzegovina and never expected to see his family again.

  • Jos Gelissen, 56 (NL)


    Recognized his own son in a dying child in Bosnia-Herzegovina.

  • Jos Remmen, 54 (NL)


    Felt completely powerless in Lebanon.

  • Justin Holt, 26 (USA)


    Saw his best friend die in Iraq.

  • Kent Reilly, 67 (USA)


    Never witnessed an easy death in Vietnam.

  • Leo Hartog, 51 (NL)


    Sees mines and explosives everywhere since serving in Lebanon.

  • Martin Armstrong (UK)


    Walked past cars and garbage bins in Northern Ireland and was always glad they didn't blow up.

  • Nigel Green Rowe (UK)


    War – like the one in Bosnia-Herzegovina – destroys, gardening creates.

  • Reinier Pol, 36 (NL)


    His experiences of the war in Bosnia-Herzegovina flooded back after he witnessed a lethal car accident.

  • Roy Kolmer, 35 (NL)


    Struggles to control his anger since serving in Bosnia-Herzegovina.

  • Scott Casimiro (USA)


    Stepped on a roadside bomb in Afghanistan and suffers from traumatic brain injury and PTSD.

  • Simon Buckden, 41 (UK)

    Bosnia, Northern Ireland, Cyprus, Iraq, Rwanda

    Abused as a child, he made a good soldier in Bosnia-Herzegovina, Northern Ireland, Cyprus, Iraq and Rwanda.

  • Steven Diaz, 28 (USA)


    Fought hard in Iraq and bore the brunt of a roadside bomb.

  • Tony Hayes, 60 (UK)


    Served in Northern Ireland and learned that big boys do cry.

  • Tony Richards (UK)


    Became a heavy drinker, after serving in Northern Ireland.

  • Willie Roberts, 47 (USA)

    Iraq, Somalia, Bosnia, Kosovo, Iraq, Haiti, Afghanistan

    Struggled with PTSD after serving in Iraq, Somalia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Kosovo, Iraq, Haiti and Afghanistan, and would have killed himself if he hadn't had RC, his dog.


Hidden Wounds is an interactive video clip about veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). It was inspired by an article by journalist Erwin James in The Guardian, about the uncontrolled violence that former soldiers – in particular war veterans – can display after returning to civilian life, as a result of post-traumatic stress.

Interview with Tom Barman
Here you can see the interview with dEUS frontman Tom Barman about the making of the song. "Everybody has been heartbroken, everybody has at least one or deaths in their life, but not a lot of people fight wars and see horrible things."
Find more about dEUS' music on their website deus.be or follow them on Facebook.com/dEUSmusic

Jimmy Johnson served in the British Army in Northern Ireland in the 1970s. After being discharged, his marriage disintegrated, he turned to drink and his behavior became increasingly erratic. During a panic attack, brought on by a sudden, intense noise, he murdered an innocent man. He spent years in prison and, shortly after his release, killed again. While accepting responsibility for his actions – he pleaded guilty on both occasions – he has spearheaded a campaign from prison using his own situation as an example of the far-reaching and devastating consequences that post-traumatic stress can have. He has also fought to gain recognition for the shocking number of veterans who end up in prison or commit suicide.

Johnson’s case is extreme – he killed two people – but not exceptional. The Western world has been at peace for more than 60 years. At least on its own soil. Yet while the civilian population remains safely out of harm’s way, young soldiers leave for new fronts. After their tour of duty they return to a society to which they often struggle to adapt.

Hidden Wounds tells the story of more than 20 of these veterans. They come from the Netherlands, Belgium, the United States and United Kingdom and served in missions and conflicts from the Second World War to Afghanistan. Although their experiences differ, they are all scarred by the same hidden wounds. A sudden noise, sharp smell, bright light, busy street, even the presence of other people can trigger flashbacks to a traumatic event. Estimates vary, but it is likely that at least 20 percent of deployed soldiers display symptoms of PTSD. This often has dramatic consequences. According to Hidden Wounds, a non-profit organization in Columbia, South Carolina, 22 veterans commit suicide every day in the United States.

Hidden Wounds is not an indictment of military or humanitarian peacekeeping missions. But if we send “our boys” to the front, do we not have a duty to consider their welfare and the possible consequences? The disorder should not be underestimated and should be included in the political decision-making about military missions and the mandate under which troops operate.


PTSD is a psychiatric disorder that can occur following a traumatic event. Symptoms include flashbacks, blackouts, difficulty concentrating, a feeling of alienation, poor sleep and irritability, which continue for months and sometimes even years after the event.


PTSD is typically associated with military veterans but can be found in all walks of life.
Read more about PTSD here: Wikipedia


Prospektor is a journalistic production agency which specializes in new forms of documentary storytelling. Find out more about Prospektor on their website (www.prospektor.nl).


Nederland – Veteraneninstituut
Veteranen, dienstslachtoffers en hun thuisfront kunnen 24 / 7 bellen of mailen.

Web: www.veteraneninstituut.nl
Tel: 034 3474148

België – Instituut voor veteranen
Veteranen, dienstslachtoffers en hun thuisfront kunnen bellen of mailen.

Web: www.warveterans.be
Tel: 0800 1692277

United States – VA
Please contact your local Veterans Administration (VA)

Web: www.va.gov
Tel: (800) 273-TALK or
(877) WAR-VETS

Great Britain – Veterans Agency
Veterans, military personnel and family members can contact their local Veterans Agency.

Web: www.veterans-uk.info
Tel: 0800-1692277


dEUS – Hidden Wounds :
A documentary by Tomas Kaan & Arnold van Bruggen


Song & lyrics dEUS
Concept Arnold van Bruggen & Eefje Blankevoort @ Prospektor.nl
Director Tomas Kaan
DOP Daniël Bouquet, nsc
Interviews Arnold van Bruggen
Editor Maurik de Ridder
Sounddesign Mark Glynne
Creative & executive producer Arnold van Bruggen
Research Arnold van Bruggen, Eefje Blankevoort, Carlijn Limburg @ Prospektor.nl
Co-research & production UK Sally Howard
Co-research & production USA Jennifer King
Title design Sander Brouwer
Grading de Grot


Concept Arnold van Bruggen, Eefje Blankevoort, Sara Kolster & Thomas Lievestro
Editing Carlijn Limburg, Marie Claire Bovet, Tess Janse & Coen Aerts @ Prospektor
Design Sara Kolster
Technical realisation Thomas Lievestro


Many thanks to the hospitality of all these veterans:

Anke Dorpmanns – Bosnia-Herzegovina, Iraq | Dan Hoffman – Vietnam | Dave Adams – Northern Ireland, Iraq, Bosnia, Iraq | David de Bats – Somalia | Gary Phillips – Vietnam | Harry Flusher – World War II | Jean Limbourg – Cambodia, Bosnia-Herzegovina | Johan Bruurmijn – Kosovo | Johan de Jonge – Bosnia-Herzegovina | Jos Gelissen – Bosnia-Herzegovina | Jos Remmen – Lebanon | Justin Holt – Iraq | Kent Reilly – Vietnam | Leo Hartog – Lebanon | Martin Armstrong – Northern-Ireland | Nigel Green Rowe – Bosnia-Herzegovina | Reinier Pol – Bosnia-Herzegovina | Roy Kolmer – Bosnia-Herzegovina | Scott Casimiro – Afghanistan | Simon Buckden – Bosnia, Northern Ireland, Cyprus, Iraq, Rwanda | Steven Diaz – Iraq | Tony Hayes – Northern-Ireland | Tony Richards – Northern-Ireland | William Roberts – Iraq, Somalia, Bosnia, Kosovo, Iraq, Haiti, Afghanistan


Tom Barman, Christian Pierre @ dEUS | Musickness
Lina Nasser @ VRT.be & Margriet Bakker & Alex Klusman @ BKB

More information
To get more information about this documentary, please get in touch with Prospektor by phone (+31207762173) or email (info@prospektor.nl)


This documentary & website is made possible by the generosity of:

Vfonds | Tax-videoclipfonds | Haghe Film | Camera-rentals |
FelixArchief Antwerpen | Stichting Democratie en Media

Tax-videoclipfonds Stichting Democratie en Media Vfonds