Feel free to let him know, and can put together a list of the stuff I found if he wants it. I was a little disappointed when I started finding small mistakes in their text of some books, as Osprey is usually extremely accurate in anything they produce. It was like going to your favorite restaurant for years, and then finding a hair in your food.
Essential History series are horrible. I can read only about events I know nothing about. Though everything else of what I saw, is really fine and always (even when not exactly accurate) is great starting point.
To maniacs of military history and tactics dedicated: http://cgsc.cdmhost.com/cdm4/browse.php
(there is collections' selector in the left top corner)
Please don't crash this site, it's one of my favorites.
1-Body of Secrets: Anatomy of the Ultra-Secret National Security Agency (james banford)
very very good book on NSA spy operations from 1945 untill 2001.
2-Red Star Rogue: The Untold Story of a Soviet Submarine's Nuclear Strike Attempt on the U.S.
very interesting theory of how soviet submarine k-129 sank in n.pacific.it was partially retrieved by CIA using ocean driller vessel glomar explorer.
3-Blind Man's Bluff: The Untold Story of American Submarine Espionage
very good book on cold war submarine spy operations
4-The Silent War: The Cold War Battle Beneath the Sea
one of best book on history of cold war submarine operations
5-The Price of Vigilance: Attacks on American Surveillance Flights
superb book!! no one knows anything untill hidden files were declassified about US spy planes daring operations over soviet soil.Alot of planes has been hit , a lot of airmen has lost their lives.must read...
i've had conversations with a gentleman who served as the DF OpsO for this mission
regarding The Guts To Try, here's what he had to say...
"Jim Kyle. Jim (COL, USAF) was the overall aviation coordinator for the Iranian Rescue Mission, and was officially in command until the ground phase began. He rode the MC-130 /HC-130 flight into Desert 1 with us. Charlie Beckwith (COL, USA Special Forces) was the ground commander, and would officially take over at the second LZ - that to which the USMC helo contingent would take us, and where we would marry up with **** Meadows' covert advanced party in Iran, and the trucks they had secured. In point of fact, Beckwith was deferred to at desert 1 by Jim, because the USAF contingent had finished their job in fine fashion (no landing at more than predicted touchdown time + 30 seconds, and we infiltrated undetected).
Jim Pittman (COL, USMC) "led" the USMC helo contingent, but he himself turned back to the carrier off the coast after an hour's flight - without telling anyone that he had opted out. I will reserve judgement on Pittman, who later became Deputy Commandant of the Corps as a three star, but Jim Kyle is a fine Air Warrior and a great American. His book takes it easy on the Corps, but otherwise is a fairly complete telling of that sad moment in US History.
We started with 8 CH-53s,knowing that we needed a minimum of 5. They ran into a ha**** - sand storm - as did the C-130s. Pittman's turned back first and went back to the carrier. He just suddenly disappeared. Then they lost another CH-53 enroute. It landed, and and a second bird landed and picked up the crew. Then one landed at Desert 1 with "red chip lights all over the board" and the rest straggled in. That left the required 5. But the real killer was that the crews were all - well, shaken not stirred so to speak. I argued with Beckwith that we should jap slap the crews and call upon their manhood, and get on with the mission. He first said OK, and then changed his mind after another CH-53 pilot indicated he had red chip lights all over its instrument panel. Beckwith then called General Vaught in Egypt who called the White House, got the approvals, and ordered an abort. We were to clear out back to Masira in the 130s. The plan was to destroy the USMC CH-53s (they were already rigged with charges), put their crews on the MC/HC-130s fleet who were lined up turning props, and get outta Dodge.
While we were in the process of getting the word out and setting that action up, a USMC pilot by the name of Schaffer lifted his CH-53 off for some unknown reason - without permission from the USAF Command and Control Team who were running the LZ - and crashed the end HC-130, killing its crew and most of his, and with DELTA's 60 man B Squadron running out the back off the ramp and barely avoiding being incinerated themselves. My bird was next to the crashed site, and as we taxied away from the bonfire, CSMG Foreman and I pulled Shaeffer and his co-pilot, the only survivors of his crew, into the HC-130 we were in, and got them to the medic. Both were burned.
At that point, all the loaded 130s took off in a star pattern away from the burning crash site. Jerry Utaro who was flying my HC-130 hit a berm on takeoff and we lost the prop off one engine. We flew back to Masira on 3. I love 130s.
The USN fighter CAP then launched off the carrier, got feet dry, and covered our butts as we left Persians airspace (The Iranian Air Force was also flying Tomcats at the time). Thank God for that. But, The Iranians never even tipped to the fact that we were leaving, much less to the fact that we had penetrated to the middle of their country undetected.
Sad Tale, but Carter had put our military in such a low state of readiness, it's no surprise it didn't come off. Result: 52 American officials held hostage for 444 days. Ronnie Ray Gun had to fix it after his inauguration."
Do you/have you read about Napoleonic Battle history / strategy. I understand that much better that Byzantine History.
Depends. Which 'side' of the Napoleonic wars are most interesting to you?
I'm about a quarter of the way through this one. It's a pretty fascinating read, most notably for the frequent (and well-timed) inclusions of entries from Graham Moore's diary. Unlike other overview-type books that typically concentrate on campaigns/battles and how they're fought and/or turn out, this piece looks at how men aboard ships lived and how their officers related to both the crew and to other officers. In some ways it's a study of the social lives of Royal Navy officers and how they tried to forge and maintain connections with influential people in order to improve their own prospects. Too, it provides a good look at how subordinate ship captains/commanders related to their superiors when at sea.
Plus it's just a good read text-wise. The Moore family contributed a lot to the British military during the Napoleonic wars. Wareham does a fine job making Graham's diary fit in with the 'big picture'.
The Tunnels of Cu Chi...by Tom Mangold & Penycate .....really outstanding
Marine Sniper by Charles Henderson (story of Gunny Carlos Hathcock)....really outstanding
One Shot-One kill by Sasser and Roberts.....okay but not as good as the above two
I recently finished reading Veil: The Secret Wars of the CIA 1981-1987 by Bob Woodward of the Washington Post. I found it an interesting book to re-read (I read it first in 1998), but it is quite obvious to me that it is written not from a standpoint as an historian, but a journalist. Consequently, most of the activity took place in Washington, not in the field. Much of it was also the story of William Casey, who became CIA director after running Reagan's successful 1980 campaign. He is the main character in the book, and Woodward provided some insight into what the relationship between the Agency, the White House, and Congress was like in the 1980s. As an example, Reagan wanted to help the contras and fight the spread of communism out of Nicaragua. Casey was enthusiastic about this, but was frustrated at times by reluctance within a CIA that had been beaten and neutered under Ford and Carter, and then hampered further by Congress and the Senate, who were very reluctant to get America drawn into another jungle war. In a nutshell, Reagan was saying "Bill, go down there and help the Contras." Congress and the Senate were telling CIA "No, we won't fund it." Throw in an enthusiastic Marine officer on the NSC staff (Ollie North) and the desire to secretly get American hostages released by Hezbollah in Beirut, and the rest is history.
One thing I disliked reading (I don't think Woodward intended this) was the general attitude of the press, that they have a right to know things and write stories about them, even while they are taking place. I got the impression that there were an incredible number of people leaking things to the press, either on purpose, or through gross stupidity. I can't imagine what things are like today.
All in all, it was a decent book, and helps portray American foreign policy as it has been for many years, in my opinion - muddling and not always consistent. This book complemented the last two I read - All The Shah's Men and Guests of the Ayatollah. I think reading a number of books that all touch on a similar subject can build a more comprehensive view than reading a single book or single author.
DANGERS' HOUR: The Story of the USS Bunker Hill and the Kamakaze Pilot who Crippled Her by Maxwell Taylor Kennedy
A long (450+ pages) but very readable account of the May 11, 1945 attack on the Essex-Class Carrier Bunker Hill. But the attack doesn't occur until about halfway through the book. Instead, you follow the combat history of the Bunker Hill and the men who manned her, gathered from actual interviews, and somewhat more surprisingly, the life of one of the two Kamakaze pilots who crashed into her decks off Okinowa.
How the author knew the identity of the pilot and discovered his history I leave to your reading the book (it is not disclosed until near the end). He provides the life aboard a WW II Carrier, the flaws in design that led to the loss of nearly the entire aircrews, and the Engineers who bought time to control the raging fires with their lives.
Highly recommended, I had trouble putting it down, and it provides a view of WW II from both sides that is pretty unique in the genre.
Haven't seen these mentioned. Even though there brick sizes I couldn't put them away. Not just explaining what happened, but also - why it happened. From the top brass to the man in the foxhole on the front line. Having spend the most of my adault lift in the Army I still have beeing able to find some serious examples of great - and not so great leadership in these books that I find just as importent as they where 60+ years ago.. Really good read!
I saw someone here on MP.net write about this book and how great it is, and I ordered it the same day from amazon. I am barely into the book about 12 pages and it is GREAT. everyone who has read it on amazon gave it four stars. It really tells you the inside story of the prisoners and life at GITMO. from the allies capturing over 70,000 prisoners on the battlefield, they have vetted those down to the most dangerous, lethal, 800 detainees. And it is NOT a prison at GITMO, rather a "detention camp" to keep enemy combatents off the battlefield in the war on terror.
I can't put the book down! please read it if you are interested in the war on terror.
I just finished Thomas L. Friedman's From Beirut to Jerusalem. It was outstanding. In many ways it is two books in one; the first part covers much of the Lebanese Civil War, including the major players, while the second portion is about Israel and her relationshi with America and the Palestinians. The one problem I found with the book was the fact that it's dated - it was published 20 years ago, and all of the major players - Arafat, Assad, King Hussein, Rabin, and Sharon have passed from the scene. A generation has passed. Many of the Palestinian youths involved in the intifada 20 years ago are very likely the parents of young fighters from Hamas, and the Israeli soldiers who went into Lebanon in 1982, or patrolled the West Bank and Gaza in the late 1980s have sons who still patrol those areas. Much of the story wasn't history; it was about national identity. In spite of its age, I think this book makes an amazing foundation for those who want to learn about the modern middle east. It would be fantastic if the author was able to pen a new addition that brings both Israel and Lebanon up to date, as well as covering other changes in the region; Desert Storm, 9/11, the ripples of the war in Afghanistan, the end of Saddam Hussein, and the U.S. involvement in Iraq