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In 1967-68, the United States Marine Corps (USMC) was on the front line of the defence of South Vietnam's Quang Tri province, which was at the very heart of the Vietnam conflict. Facing them were the soldiers of the North Vietnamese Army (NVA), men whose organization and equipment made them a very different opponent from the famous, irregular Viet Cong forces. From the 'Hill Battles' in April 1967 to the struggle for the city of Hue (January-March 1968) this bloody campaign forced the two sides into a gruelling trial of strength. The USMC held a general technological and logistical advantage - including close air support and airborne transport, technology, and supplies - but could not always utilize these resources effectively in mountainous, jungle, or urban environments better known by their Vietnamese opponents. In this arresting account of small-unit combat, David R. Higgins steps into the tropical terrain of Vietnam to assess the performance and experience of USMC and NVA forces in three savage battles that stretched both sides to the limit.
As it seeks to win the hearts and minds of citizens in the Muslim world, the United States has poured millions of dollars into local television and radio programming, hoping to generate pro-American currents on Middle Eastern airwaves. However, as this fascinating new book shows, the Middle Eastern media producers who rely on these funds are hardly puppets on an American string, but instead contribute their own political and creative agendas while working within U.S. restrictions. The Other Air Force gives readers a unique inside look at television and radio production in Afghanistan and the Palestinian territories, from the isolated villages of the Afghan Panjshir Valley to the congested streets of Ramallah. Communications scholar Matt Sienkiewicz explores how the U.S. takes a ""soft-psy"" approach to its media efforts combining ""soft"" methods of encouraging entertainment programming, such as adaptations of The Voice and The Apprentice with more militaristic ""psy-ops"" approaches to information control. Drawing from years of field research and interviews with everyone from millionaire executives to underpaid but ever resourceful cameramen, Sienkiewicz considers the perspectives of the Afghan and Palestinian media workers trying to forge viable broadcasting businesses without straying outside American-set boundaries for acceptable content. As it carefully examines the interplay of U.S. military and economic might with the capacity for local ingenuity and resistance, the book also analyzes the intriguingly complex programming that emerges from this tension. Combining eyewitness reportage with cutting-edge scholarship, The Other Air Force reveals the remarkable creative output that can emerge even from the world's tensest conflict zones.
A poignant, often humorous, recollection of the siege of Khe Sanh -- a pivotal turning point in the American war in Vietnam. Under constant bombardment from the enemy, Mike Archer and his cadre of fellow nineteen-year-old 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. Includes numerous photographs, maps and provides a detailed history of the battle for Khe Sanh.
This compelling and timely collaboration between photographer/writer Jim Lommasson and American veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars presents Lommasson's portraits and interviews as well as soldiers' own photographs from the war zones. The stories expressed in words and in images are intimate, profound, and timeless. In their own words, 50 men and women speak their truth about these wars-what they saw and what they did. They talk about the wars' impact on themselves and on their loved ones at home as well as on the Iraqis and Afghanis caught in the crossfire. They talk about why they went to war and how the war came home with them. Our soldiers need to tell their stories, and we need to listen.
At the beginning of the Vietnam War, the Vietnam People's Air Force (VPAF) were equipped with slow, old Korean War generation fighters - a combination of MiG-17s and MiG-19s - types that should have offered little opposition to the cutting-edge fighter-bombers such as the F-4 Phantom II, F-105 Thunderchief and the F-8 Crusader. Yet when the USAF and US Navy unleashed their aircraft on North Vietnam in 1965 the inexperienced pilots of the VPAF were able to shatter the illusion of US air superiority. Taking advantage of their jet's unequalled low-speed maneuverability, small size and powerful cannon armament they were able to take the fight to their missile-guided opponents, with a number of Vietnamese pilots racking up ace scores. Packed with information previously unavailable in the west and only recently released from archives in Vietnam, this is the first major analysis of the exploits of Vietnamese pilots in the David and Goliath contest with the US over the skies of Vietnam.
From Andrew Wiest, the bestselling author of The Boys of '67: Charlie Company's War in Vietnam and one of the leading scholars in the study of the Vietnam War, comes a frank exploration of the human experience during the conflict. Vietnam allows the reader a grunt's-eye-view of the conflict - from the steaming rice paddies and swamps of the Mekong Delta, to the triple-canopy rainforest of the Central Highlands and the forlorn Marine bases that dotted the DMZ. It is the definitive oral history of the Vietnam War told in the uncompromising, no-holds barred language of the soldiers themselves.
In August 2006, many senior U.S. officials thought America had lost the war in Iraq, as the senior U.S. Marine Corps intelligence officer there wrote that control of al Anbar Province, the seat of the raging Sunni insurgency, was irrevocably lost to the insurgents. During that time, there were over 100 attacks per day against U.S. military and Iraqi forces in al Anbar, and al Qaeda in Iraq had planted their flag in the provincial capital, Ramadi, declaring it the capital of their new Islamic State of Iraq. In January 2007, as a spearhead of the newly decided Surge, the 3rd Battalion, 69th Armored Regiment deployed to Ramadi as part of the 3rd Infantry Division, the first regular Army unit to deploy to Iraq for a third time. The battalion and its parent brigade went to work in a campaign that will be seen as the D-Day of the Global War on Terror. Starting by clearing al Qaeda from the city of Ramadi and replacing them with legitimate locally raised and trained Iraqi police while simultaneously fostering the tribal movement known as the Awakening Councils the brigade began to have tremendous success. By April 2007, attacks within Ramadi went from twenty per day to one or two per week. By mid-summer 2007, attacks in the entire province were down 90 percent from 2006. Furthermore, the Awakening had swept through the rest of Iraq, leading to the best security situation seen since 2003. The 3rd Battalion, 69th Armored, was the only battalion to participate in this campaign from start to finish. Moreover, many of the US successes came directly from this unit s work.Awakening Victory tells the story of this incredible campaign through the eyes of the commander of the 3rd Battalion, who was right in the thick of the fight. The book also provides a description of the Iraqi insurgency particularly al Qaeda in Iraq that offers the depth and texture which are currently lacking in most Americans' perceptions of the war. It describes the battalion s actions, including incidents previously unknown to the public, but it is not merely another blood-and-guts war story. The author uses the actions of his battalion to describe a paradigm shift that occurred, while in a totally foreign culture, yet allowed for a move from a war of bombs and bullets to one of partnership and ideas.The author, Lt. Col. Michael E. Silverman (ret) is a political scientist and historian by education and has extensive experience in both warfare and Middle Eastern affairs, including a tour as an advisor to a Saudi Arabian infantry battalion in Riyadh. Silverman served a two-year detail to the Central Intelligence Agency at their Langley headquarters between his last two tours in Iraq. There he was privy to the Director s Weekly Iraq Briefing, a working group that discussed issues on the war, many of which ultimately found their way into the President s Daily Briefing. Well-versed in international affairs and world religions, he writes with the authority of someone who has both been blown-up by an IED and helped to shape US strategic policy for the Global War on Terror. In this book he describes, from the very front line, the exact turning point where the United States turned a supposedly failed war into a possibly enduring success.REVIEWS Awakening Victory is an excellent addition to the body of works that assists Americans in understanding the complexities of the Iraq War. Colonel Dick Camp, USMC (Ret.), author of Operation Phantom Fury and Battle for the City of the Dead This is a riveting account of the sharp end of fighting insurgents in Iraq. The successes Silverman reveals should give pause to the pundits who claim American forces are incapable of defeating a modern insurgency. Kudos to Casemate Publishing for another terrific book --Jerry D. Morelock, Colonel, US Army, ret.Editor in Chief, Armchair General Magazine instructive first-hand account of how Iraq's insurgents were defeated Publisher's Weekly an amazing book about the progress made in Ramadi during the Anbar Awakening .perfect blend... Cybertron Reviews
A former senior mujahidin figure and an ex-counter-terrorism analyst cooperating to write a book on the history and legacy of Arab-Afghan fighters in Afghanistan is a remarkable and improbable undertaking. Yet this is what Mustafa Hamid, aka Abu Walid al-Masri, and Leah Farrall have achieved with the publication of their ground-breaking work. The result of thousands of hours of discussions over several years, The Arabs at War in Afghanistan offers significant new insights into the history of many of today's militant Salafi groups and movements. By revealing the real origins of the Taliban and al-Qaeda and the jostling among the various jihadi groups, this account not only challenges conventional wisdom, but also raises uncomfortable questions as to how events from this important period have been so badly misconstrued.
War Is Not a Game tells the story of this new soldiers' antiwar movement, showing why it was born, how it quickly grew, where it has struggled, what it accomplished, and how it continues to resonate in the national conversation about our military and our wars. Nan Levinson reveals the individuals behind the movement, painting an unforgettable portrait of these working-class veterans who refused to be seen as simply tragic victims or battlefront heroes and instead banded together to become leaders of a national organization.
May 2011, Afghanistan: Camp Bastion is under attack, the Sun's Defence Editor is about to catch the wrong helicopter, and a famous TV war reporter is missing half his kit and wants his trainers back. Amid the chaos, Christian Hill is preparing to lead his Combat Camera Team on the British Army's first big operation of the Helmand summer, inching through the IED-riddled fields of the notorious Green Zone, very probably getting shot at. A captain in the Media Operations Group, his job is to promote the war to the British media - and make it look like things are under control and getting better... Funny, offbeat, shocking and affectionate, Combat Camera offers a unique insight into the military's media operations in Afghanistan. As coalition troops return home after years of fighting, it will appeal to anyone who wants to know whether our campaign against the Taliban has really been worth the effort.
While the past half-century has seen no diminution in the valor and fighting skill of the U.S. military and its allies, the fact remains that our wars have become more protracted, with decisive results more elusive. With only two exceptions-Panama and the Gulf War under the first President Bush-our campaigns have taken on the character of endless slogs without positive results. This fascinating book takes a ground-up look at the problem in order to assess how our strategic objectives have recently become divorced from our true capability, or imperatives. The book presents a unique examination of the nature of insurgencies and the three major guerrilla wars the United States has fought in Iraq, Afghanistan and Vietnam. It is both a theoretical work and one that applies the hard experience of the last five decades to address the issues of today. As such, it also provides a timely and meaningful discussion of America's current geopolitical position. It starts with the previously close-held casualty estimate for Iraq that The Dupuy Institute compiled in 2004 for the U.S. Department of Defense. Going from the practical to the theoretical, it then discusses a construct for understanding insurgencies and the contexts in which they can be fought. It applies these principles to Iraq, Afghanistan and Vietnam, assessing where the projection of U.S. power can enhance our position and where it merely weakens it. It presents an extensive analysis of insurgencies based upon a unique database of 83 post-WWII cases. The book explores what is important to combat and what is not important to resist in insurgencies. As such, it builds a body of knowledge based upon a half-century's worth of real-world data, with analysis, not opinion. In these pages, Christopher A. Lawrence, the President of The Dupuy Institute, provides an invaluable guide to how the U.S. can best project its vital power, while avoiding the missteps of the recent past.
Reverberations of the Vietnam War can still be felt in American culture. The post-9/11 United States forays into the Middle East, the invasion and occupation of Iraq especially, have evoked comparisons to the nearly two decades of American presence in Viet Nam (1954-1973). That evocation has renewed interest in the Vietnam War, resulting in the re-printing of older War narratives and the publication of new ones. This volume tracks those echoes as they appear in American, Vietnamese American, and Vietnamese war literature, much of which has joined the American literary canon. Using a wide range of theoretical approaches, these essays analyze works by Michael Herr, Bao Ninh, Duong Thu Huong, Bobbie Ann Mason, le thi diem thuy, Tim O'Brien, Larry Heinemann, and newcomers Denis Johnson, Karl Marlantes, and Tatjana Solis. Including an historical timeline of the conflict and annotated guides to further reading, this is an essential guide for students and readers of contemporary American fiction
Drugs, war and terrorism were the unholy trinity that brought the US-led air campaign crashing down on the Taliban regime in Afghanistan in October 2001 in Operation Enduring Freedom, and this photographic history is a graphic introduction to it. The immediate aim was to eject the Taliban from power, and to capture or kill the al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden and his supporters whom the Taliban were sheltering. The decade-long war that followed, first against the Taliban regime, then against Taliban insurgents, is one of the most controversial conflicts of recent times. It has also seen the deployment of thousands of coalition troops and a huge range of modern military equipment, and these are the main focus of Anthony Tucker-Jones's account. He covers the entire course of the conflict, from the initial air war, the battle for the White Mountains and Tora Bora, the defeat of the Taliban, the escape of bin Laden and the grim protracted security campaign that followed - an asymmetrical war of guerrilla tactics and improvised explosive devices that is going on today.
The 'missile with a man in it' was known for its blistering speed
and deadliness in air combat. The F-104C flew more than 14,000
combat hours in Vietnam as a bomber escort, a Wild Weasel escort
and a close air support aircraft. Though many were sceptical of its
ability to carry weapons, the Starfighter gave a fine account of
itself in the close air support role. It was also well known that
the enemy were especially reluctant to risk their valuable and
scarce MiGs when the F-104 was escorting bombers over North Vietnam
or flying combat air patrols nearby. The missions were not without
risk, and 14 Starfighters were lost during the war over a two-year
period. This was not insignificant considering that the USAF only
had one wing of these valuable aircraft at the time, and wartime
attrition and training accidents also took quite a bite from the
USAF Rolling Thunder strike missions tactically assaulted North
Vietnamese defenses, overcoming MiG fighter jets and SAM (surface
to air) missiles to devastate North Vietnam's industrial base
'My Vietnam' is Dave Morgan's story. A typical 20 year old, he was forced into extraordinary circumstances in Vietnam. The Vietnam War would expose Dave to an omnipresent danger and sheer terror that would impact him forever. Dave's story focuses on his time as a soldier and his return psychologically exhausted to a divided nation.
Contemporary Military Strategy and the Global War on Terror offers an in-depth analysis of US/UK military strategy in Afghanistan and Iraq from 2001 to the present day. It explores the development of contemporary military strategy in the West in the modern age before interrogating its application in the Global War on Terror. The book provides detailed insights into the formulation of military plans by political and military elites in the United States and United Kingdom for Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom. Alastair Finlan highlights the challenges posed by each of these unique theatres of operation, the nature of the diverse enemies faced by coalition forces, and the shortcomings in strategic thinking about these campaigns. This fresh perspective on strategy in the West and how it has been applied in recent military campaigns facilitates a deep understanding of how wars have been and will be fought. Including key terms, concepts and discussion questions for each chapter, Contemporary Military Strategy and the Global War on Terror is a crucial text in strategic studies, and required reading for anyone interested in the new realities of transnational terrorism and twenty-first century warfare.
This edited volume describes various analytic methods used by intelligence analysts supporting military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan as members of the Iraq and Afghan Threat Finance Cells-interagency intelligence teams tasked to disrupt terrorist and insurgent funding. All contributors have deployed to Iraq and/or Afghanistan and detail both the bureaucratic and intellectual challenges in understanding terrorist and insurgent finance networks and then designing operations to attack such networks via conventional military operations, Special Forces kill/capture targeting operations, and non-kinetic operations such as asset freezing or diplomacy. The analytic methods described here leverage both quantitative and qualitative methods, but in a language and style accessible to those without a quantitative background. All methods are demonstrated via actual case studies (approved for release by the U.S. government) drawn from the analysts' distinct experiences while deployed. This book will be of interest to current or aspiring intelligence analysts, students of security studies, anti-money laundering specialists in the private sector, and more generally to those interested in understanding how intelligence analysis feeds into live operations during wartime at a very tactical level.
Any time Vietnam veterans get together--whether it's two or twenty of them--war stories follow. The tales they relate about the paddies, the jungles, the highlands, the waterways, and the airways provide the vets a greater understanding of the war they survived and gives nonparticipants a glimpse into the dangerous intensity of firefights, the often hilarious responses to inexplicable situations, and the strong bonds only they can share. These stories from soldiers, sailors, airmen, and marines have never been captured or compiled in a meaningful way--until now. These stories are the "real meat" of the Vietnam experience. In brief narratives, the veterans themselves relate the valor, hardship, fear, and humor of the war in Vietnam.
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