A Patch of Ground: Khe Sanh Remembered
Michael Archer - 2005
Under constant bombardment from the enemy, Michael Archer and his cadre of young Marines Orr, Pig, Old Woman and Savage, just to name a few managed to survive and, in the process, learn about manhood, sacrifice and the darkest recesses of fear and loneliness.
B.K. Bryans - 2012
Navy fighter/attack pilot from 1956 to 1980. (What it was like to fly jets off aircraft carriers in the days before smart bombs, GPS, and automated carrier landing systems.) After two years at the University of Arizona, the author entered the Naval Aviation Cadet Program in Pensacola, Florida, and became a carrier-qualified jet pilot at age twenty. As a naval aviator, he flew 3,669 hours in thirteen different types of aircraft, made 652 carrier landings (163 of them at night), and flew 183 combat missions during the Vietnam War. He was awarded the Silver Star, the Distinguished Flying Cross, and thirteen Air Medals. He went on to command Attack Squadron 35 aboard USS Nimitz.This is the story.
White Water Red Hot Lead: On Board U.S. Navy Swift Boats in Vietnam
Dan Daly - 2015
The boats patrolled the coast and rivers of South Vietnam, with the average age of the crew being twenty-four. Their days consisted of deadly combat, intense lightning firefights, storms and many hidden dangers.This action-packed story of combat written by Dan Daly, a Vietnam combat veteran who was the Officer in Charge of PCF 76 makes you part of the Swift Boat crew. The six man crew of PCF 76 were volunteers from all over the United States, eager to serve their country in a highly unique type of duty not seen since the PT boats of WWII. This inexperienced and disparate group of men would meld into a combat team - a team that formed an unbreakable, lifelong bond.After training they were plunged into a 12 month tour of duty. Combat took place in the closest confines imaginable, where the enemy were hidden behind a passing sand dune or a single sniper could be concealed in an onshore bunker, mines might be submerged at every fork in the river. The enemy was all around you, hiding, waiting, while your fifty-foot Swift Boat works its way upriver. In many cases the rivers became so narrow there was barely room to maneuver or turn around. The only way out might be into a deadly ambush. Humor and a touch of romance relieve the tension in this thrilling ride with America's finest.
Tank Commander: From the Fall of France to the Defeat of Germany: The Memoirs of Bill Close
Bill Close - 2013
He was wounded three times. He finished the war as one of the most experienced and resourceful of British tank commanders, and in later life, he set down his wartime experiences in graphic detail. His book is not only an extraordinary memoir; it is also a compelling account of the exploits of the Royal Tank Regiment throughout the conflict. As a record of the day-to-day experience of the tank crew of seventy-five years ago--of the conditions they faced and the battles they fought--it has rarely been equaled.
Fire Strike 7/9
Paul 'Bommer' Grahame - 2010
He's an elite army JTAC (Joint Terminal Attack Controller- pronounced 'jay-tack') - a specially trained warrior responsible for directing Allied air power with high-tech precision. Commanding Apache gunships, A10 tank-busters, F15s and Harrier jets, he brings down devastating fire strikes against the attacking Taliban, often danger close to his own side. Due to his specialist role, Sergeant Grahame usually operates in the thick of the action, where it's at its most fearsome and deadly. Conjuring the seemingly impossible from apparently hopeless situations, soldiers in battle rely on the skill and bravery of their JTAC to enable them to win through in the heat of the danger zone. Fire Strike 7/9 tells the story of Bommer Grahame and his five-man Fire Support Team on their tour of Afghanistan. Patrolling deep into enemy territory, they were hunted and targeted by the Taliban, shot at, blown-up, mortared and hit by rockets on numerous occasions. Under these conditions Sergeant Grahame notched up 203 confirmed enemy kills, making him the difference between life and death both for his own troops and the Taliban.
The Shake 'n Bake Sergeant: True Story of Infantry Sergeants in Vietnam
Jerry Horton - 2010
Horton's experiences being thrown into heavy combat after just a few months of training. Recommended reading for all. Survival against all odds - in the trenches of Vietnam - I still can't believe they get out of there alive - couldn't put it down. This first person narrative of hand-to-hand combat in the trenches of Vietnam left me scared, glad to be alive and eternally grateful to those who died for my freedom Could not put it down - A friend had mentioned this book to me. Once I received it I could not put it down. Jerry Horton joined the army to simply be able to afford to go to college. 40 years later he has a PHD and multiple degrees but they were earned at a heavy price for this patriot. Jerry shares his experiences in Vietnam in an articulate, honest and direct assessment of his time in Vietnam, the men he served with and the horrors of war. Incredible story of leadership and survival. Shake N Bake Sergeant aka Instant NCO - Jerry Horton absolutely nailed the life of a "Shake 'n Bake" Sergeant when he tells the story of dedicated soldiers trained at Fort Benning, GA and then follows them to Vietnam. This book is not only absolutely dead on accurate but gives the reader every aspect of what it was like to experience the war as a Shake 'n Bake Sergeant. Instant NCO's were trained for only one reason - to lead United States soldiers into combat and they did it with heroic efficiency and effectiveness with limited resources. This book is not just a home run - it is a Grand Slam. Interesting, accurate, full of suspense and you can't put it down. This book should be required reading for everyone so they can understand that Freedom is not Free. There is a cost and sometimes that cost is heavy. Horton brings it all across in a nonstop action format. It is a great read! If you really want to know what it was like...This has to be the most realistic 'must read' book to come out of the VN war. If you ever read any book about this war - this is the one to read. You won't put it down and you won't ever forget it! From the book's review by the late COL(R) David Hackworth (most-decorated Vietnam veteran): "In 1968, the U.S. Army was running out of sergeants in Vietnam. Throughout military history, as least as far back as the Revolutionary War, sergeants were the backbone of the Army. This shortage of sergeants meant disaster in Vietnam. The NCO candidate school was created to solve this serious problem by doing one thing - train soldiers to lead men in combat. It was modeled after the Officer's candidate school but streamlined to meet this critical need for leaders in half the time. Graduates were known by most as "Shake 'n Bake Sergeants" or "Instant NCOs" since they got their rank fast from going to school. This book is the first time this important part of American history has ever been published. It is the first time anyone has given credit to Shake 'n Bake Sergeants - a credit that they so greatly deserved. At the time there were many who said they would fail. It seemed many did not respect them even though all were destined for front line positions. The book documents how they proved their worth over and over again as front line infantry leaders even though for thirty some years their sacrifices have been unknown." An unforgettable mixture of vivid realism, poignant sadness and unexpected humor. Once you begin reading The Shake 'n Bake Sergeant, you will find it hard to put it down. See www.shakenbakesergeant.com.
Special Boat Squadron
Barrie Pitt - 1983
Only since the Falklands campaign have the initials SBS become known to the public. Yet this clandestine formation of Britain’s armed forces has been in existence since the Second World War. Barrie Pitt, who himself served with the SBS, describes how the it came into being in 1941. How they fought with distinction in the Aegean, where one of their exploits inspired The Guns of Navarone. How they earned rapport in the Adriatic, in Greece and in Italy. How the SBS was reorganised in 1946 as part of the Royal Marines and has since played a role in Korea, Borneo and the Falklands. Equally interesting is the author’s report of the training and specialized skills required by the boat units, and the essential tasks facing them — infiltration from the sea, reconnaissance, sabotage, survival, resistance to interrogation, escape from captivity — and the expertise and determination to complete them. As Barrie Pitt's superb account of the formative years of this elite force shows, these qualities have been present from the very beginning. Barrie Pitt (1918-2006) was well known as a military historian and editor of Purnell’s History of the Second World War and History of the First World War. His publications include 'Coronel and Falkland', 'Churchill and the Generals' and 'The Crucible of War', a trilogy covering the North African campaign of the Second World War. He was born in Galway and later lived near Ilminster in Somerset.
Afghan Heat: SAS Operations in Afghanistan
Steve Stone - 2013
The book follows individual operations where special forces, aircraft, and the latest surveillance technology are fused together - in order to capture key figures or simply take out an enemy stronghold.The books account is both gritty and graphical as it follows the SAS, battling at times against overwhelming odds in a hostile country. Fighting a war hardened enemy with years of experience fighting occupying forces. Even these elite soldiers with advanced weaponry and immense fire support at their disposal are put to the ultimate test of skill and courage fighting in the 'Stan.'
Joint Force Harrier
Ade Orchard - 2008
. their lives too often depended on the success of danger-close. pin-point attacks pressed home from the air. When 800 Naval Air Squadron - callsign 'Recoil' - arrived in theatre. their Boss. Commander Ade Orchard. knew there could be no slip-ups. Day and night. the Fleet Air Arm crews were on constant alert. ready to scramble their heavily armed Harrier attack jets at a moment's notice in support of the men on the ground. The call wasn't slow in coming. Just fifteen minutes after getting airborne for the first time. Orchard and his wingman were in the thick of it. called in when an Apache helicopter gunship was forced back by heavy fire...
Mosquito Mayhem: de Havillands Wooden Wonder in Action in WWII
Martin W. Bowman - 2010
Oboe entailed the pilot flying dead straight and level for ten minutes on the attack run. Suddenly a tremendous flash lit up the sky about 50 yards ahead of our nose and exactly at our altitude. Within a tenth of a second we were through the cloud of dirty yellowish-brown smoke and into the blackness beyond. I shall never forget the spontaneous reaction of both my pilot and myself. We turned our heads slowly and looked long and deep into one anothers eyes - no word was spoken - no words were needed.The Mosquito was probably World War IIs most versatile combat aircraft. This book contains hundreds of firsthand accounts from many of the twoman crews who flew in them; pilots and navigators. It portrays the dramatic experiences of flying in its many roles as pathfinder, night fighter, reconnaissance aircraft, precision bombing and low-level ground attack aircraft. It describes many of the RAFs most audacious raids on prime but difficult targets where carpet bombing by heavy bombers was likely to be ineffective and cause unnecessary casualties to civilians. It is a remarkable record of the aircraft and the men that flew them.
Spider Zero Seven
Mike Borlace - 2018
Now he collates his experiences in this compelling wartime memoir set against the backdrop of the civil war fought in Rhodesia during the 1970s. Helicopters were a vital component of the small Rhodesian Defence Force and as part of special forces, Borlace and his fellow aircrew soon became key weapons in the counterinsurgency operations. Adopting new flexible tactics and blending stealth with courage, they carried the fight by air to the heart of the enemy, establishing a fearsome reputation. In this vivid history, Borlace chronicles the story of airmen, soldiers and leading figures such as Joshua Nkomo and Robert Mugabe’s communist backed guerillas from the perspective of a professional officer at the sharp end. In Spider Zero Seven, Borlace humorously recounts the training, living conditions and hardships of his time in the forces. He also touchingly depicts the human side of the military through his portrayals of his fellow pilots, technicians, medics, nurses and flying with his dog Doris. Out of the 1096 days he served as a pilot in 7 Squadron, Borlace spent 739 days on combat operations. During his 149 contacts with the enemy he was shot down five times and wounded twice. He is one of only five recipients of the Silver Cross, the highest gallantry award given by the air force. With this authority he gives a powerful insight into the violent events of a brutal conflict, in a book that will appeal not only to those interested in military history, but also to a wider readership who enjoy a personal, true-life adventure.
Voices of the Waffen SS
Gerry Villani - 2019
They were the forces that were feared by the enemy and praised by their allies. The two lightning bolts on the collar tabs and on their helmets were the mark of the soldiers of the New Order believing in the final victory of the Reich. The Waffen SS grew into a huge force of thirty-eight combat divisions comprising over 950,000 men. In the Nuremberg Trials, the Waffen SS was condemned as part of a criminal organisation, and therefore Waffen SS veterans were denied many of the rights afforded other German combat veterans. However the Nuremberg Trials exempted conscripts from that condemnation.On several occasions, the Waffen SS was criticised by Heer commanders for their reckless disregard for casualties while taking or holding objectives. However, the Waffen SS divisions eventually proved themselves to a skeptical Heer as capable soldiers.The poor initial performance of the Waffen SS units was mainly due to the emphasis on political indoctrination rather than proper military training before the war. This was largely due to the shortage of experienced NCOs, who preferred to stay with the regular army. Despite this, the experience gained from the Polish, French and Balkan campaigns and the peculiarly egalitarian form of training soon turned Waffen SS units into elite formations.These are the stories of the men that once were part of this elite force. In this book you get a bit of history about the SS and Waffen SS, the war crimes committed by them and against them, their training, but most important of all you'll get the stories from veterans of the Leibstandarte Adolf Hitler, Das Reich, Totenkopf, Wiking, Hohenstaufen, Maria Theresia, Langemarck, SS-Fallschirmjägerbataillon 500 and Luftwaffe Fallschirmjäger, Italien, Wallonie, Nederland, 1st Estonian, and the notorious Dirlewanger Brigade. Seven decades after the war they finally have a voice...