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Charlie Flick

I just finished "Case By Case", by Ib Melchior. He was a Danish-American who was fluent in many languages, trained with the OSS, but eventually served in the Military Intelligence Service and, finally, in the Counter Intelligence Corps, which is the focus of the book. Melchior describes some pretty hair raising tales of chasing down Nazi agents, Gestapo guys and Werewolves at the end of the war and right afterwards. He is an engaging writer and I found that the book moved swiftly. More of a detective story than a pure combat account, Melchior's account shed a lot of light for me on subjects that I had previously not paid much attention to. Anyone with an interest in the end of the war in the ETO and the hunt for war criminals and other bad actors would enjoy this one. Published by Presidio Press in 1992.

 

Regards,

Charlie

 

 

 

 

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SaigonSVFan95

Forsaken Warriors is a good read,I really enjoyed it. He wrote another, "Days of Valor". It covers 6 months of his tour as the CO of a rifle company during Tet.

 

Really? I had no idea. I'll have to look into getting a copy of that once I finish "Forsaken Warriors" :D

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1SG_1st_Cav

I'm reading "Lone Survivor" by Retired US Navy Seal Marcus Luttrell, SERVICE ~ A Navy SEAL at War. Mark Wahlberg played the part of Marcus Luttrell in the movie Lone Survivor. The movie was great, but the book is WAY better! The US Navy Seals are AWESOME! Danny

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Garandomatic

I'm reading "Lone Survivor" by Retired US Navy Seal Marcus Luttrell, SERVICE ~ A Navy SEAL at War. Mark Wahlberg played the part of Marcus Luttrell in the movie Lone Survivor. The movie was great, but the book is WAY better! The US Navy Seals are AWESOME! Danny

And Jim Hornfischer collaborated with him in SERVICE. I haven't started it yet, but the pair of them pretty much guarantees it.

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Just finished Bringing Mulligan Home by Dale Maharidge.

 

I came across it at Half Priced Books. A very very powerful book by the son of a WW2 6th Division Marine. He was trying to understand the demons that seemed to haunt his father and how it had impacted on his family growing up. In the end he tracks down a bunch of guys who served with his father and learns all he can about his father's war.

 

Nothing glorious about it, but a wonderful effort that allows the stories of the vets who were still living to talk about their war and the horror of it on Guam and Okinawa as well as how the war continued to impact their lives once they got home.

 

I've read a few books by sons of vets and each has gone beyond the usual work. It seems like the personal connection makes a huge difference as the book for lack of a better word is written out of love and respect with that personal investment that can take them over the top in quality.

 

The most obvious of those is "Flag of our Fathers" by James Bradley. The stuff he wrote after that book pale in comparison as to me it seemed his heart wasn't in it.

 

The other one I'd recommend is "My Father's War" by Peter Richmond. His Dad was a Marine Officer who served on the Canal, New Brighton and Peleliu.

 

Those three are all by sons of Marines.

 

The other really powerful book like these that I've found is "Wings of Morning" by Thomas Childers. He chased the story of his uncle who was killed in a B-24.

 

 

The common thread is how the war never really goes away as it impacts on the men and the families for the rest of their lives.

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Just finished "Neptune's Inferno, The U.S. Navy at Guadalcanal" by James Hornfischer. Outstanding read by an outstanding historian/author. Covers the naval actions from top to bottom on both sides. When most Americans think of the Guadalcanal campaign we first think of the Marines. Consider the battle in terms of casualties: The Marines/Army suffered 1,592 KIAs; the navy 5,043. Highly recommend. Bob

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I don't have much interest in the history of the "modern wars" (I was all too familiar with them from my time in the military!) but I did run across the book "Damn Few: Making the Modern SEAL Warrior" by Rorke Denver. I had to buy it because I went through OCS with Rorke and always admired him. I read most of the book in one evening - it was very fast paced. He discusses his journey to becoming a SEAL, and later, when he was in charge of BUD/S, his experiences. Additionally, he talks about his experience in Iraq and the importance of the training they receive and the impact of how it affects them as people and special warriors. He was also one of the stars of "Act of Valor", and part of a chapter is dedicated to that as well.

 

If anyone is interested in SEALs, becoming a SEAL, or in special operators in today's GWOT, this is a book I HIGHLY recommend as a must-read. I don't really fit into any of those categories, but I also really found it an enjoyable and quick read and consider it a recommended book!

 

Dave

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gunbunnyB/3/75FA

 

Really? I had no idea. I'll have to look into getting a copy of that once I finish "Forsaken Warriors" :D

 

i really liked it as well.its quite well written.

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Reading "the rock of Anzio story of the 45 th infantry" so far a few chapters in and can't seem to put it down , very we'll written

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gunbunnyB/3/75FA

well im reading artillery and ammunition of the civil war. it was published in "70" but its still pretty good.

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LRRP Team Leader: A Memoir of Vietnam by John Burford.

 

It's excellent so far and I'm enjoying the authors approach to telling his story.

 

Bryant

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Currently reading GYRENE The WW2 United States Marine , just finished over the past 1 1/2 months Forty Miles A Day On Beans And Hay, At Leningrad's Gates , It Never Snows In September, The Lives of The Signers Of The Declaration Of Independence, Revolutionary Summer and Iron Tears America's Battle for Freedom, Britain's Quagmire 1775-1783

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I just finished MacArthur's Jungle War by Taafe and am currently reading Combat Officer by Walker (can't recall the first names).

 

The first is a scholarly work which leaves the reader to decide if the New Guinea-area campaigns were worth it. I think the author believes that they were. The book I guess isn't for everyone, as it's more of a scholarly overview. It's not a dry read though.

 

The second, Combat Officer, I think most Pacific war aficionados would find interesting. The author was an officer with a weapons company of the 164th Infantry on Guadalcanal, Bougainville and the Philippines. He calls it the way he sees it, e.g., regarding incompetent officers. I haven't finished it but I recommend it. It feels like it was written at the time although it was published not long ago.

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Just finished, "Viper Pilot: A Memoir of Air Combat" By Dan Hampton. The guy's full of himself, but all fighter jocks are. I found the book quite enjoyable to read and very honest. It is very hard to navigate if you don't understand pilot lingo, though, as there's a lot of that here.

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"D-Day" by Anthony Beevor

 

A simply written, flowing and well researched massive book

 

It is great for understanding the order of battle and the order of events

 

D-Day has always been an interest for me

 

Maybe as there was a squadron of Aussie pilots involved in the 2nd phase

 

What a bloody massacre the first wave was

 

Those poor soldiers...

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Just finished reading Utmost Savagery-The Three days of Tarawa by Col. Joseph Alexander, USMC (ret.). I found it a very good read and I thought the author did a good job of portraying the confusion and chaos of the battle due to so many casualties, loss of radio communications among units ashore and with the ships and the vicious close quarters combat.

 

I also just started reading a three book series by a Lt. Col (ret) William R. Spicer, USMC. The three are....From Stripes to Bars, Rotorheads, and On Her Majesty's Service. It details his personal experiences from Boot Camp where he was Plt. and series honor man. Upon arrival at ITR he was selected to sea school and sea duty as aide to several flag officers aboard carriers such as USS Kitty Hawk, Oriskany, Hancock, and Coral Sea. He later went into Vietnam with 3/9, was soon sent to OCS and detailed in Rotorheads was his experience in flight school with more duty in Vietnam with HMM-362. Covered in the third book is his assignment to exchange duty with the British Navy and Royal Marines. So far a interesting read and although not a professional writer, it is easy to read and well told. All in all, quite a varied and interesting career for him before retiring.

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TrenchfootJoe66

Just finished "Steel and Blood" by Col Hai Ma Viet

I really had high hopes for this book, especially as it garnered high praise from my favorite author and historian, Lewis Sorley. And while I can say some good things about the book, in the main, it falls well short of my expectations.

First off, it does contain a fair amount of interesting organizational data regarding ARVN armor units, Order of Battle and TO&E type stuff which I find interesting. But that portion of the book also contains marginal technical data on the various Tanks and APC's used by the ARVN, which for me was redundant and unnecessary.

The meat of the book, a combat history of ARVN armor, besides being awfully biased, is not well translated. That sort of thing isn't particularly unusual, but it gets old.

The real problem with this book is that it must be read with an understanding that most former ARVN officers have major axes to grind. They frequently leave you with the impression that while other ARVN units may have performed poorly, there unit was brave and steadfast, etc etc.

A certain amount this sort can be easily filtered out but I hit the wall with this book when I read Col Viets account of the destruction of the Dong Ha bridge in April of 72.

I won't go into it in detail but I will say that the uninformed would left with the impression that a small group of ARVN engineers assisted by two American advisors and supported by ARVN M-48 tanks, dropped the span with explosives.

This is indeed a watered down version of events.

Little mention is made of the ARVN marines who actually held the bridge and their advisor, who almost single handedly wired the bridge while under heavy fire, isn't even mentioned by name.

Like I said, a certain amount of "branch bias" is to be expected but in this case the lack of detail is breathtaking and almost unforgivable.

Overall, Id say that Col Viets book is interesting but should be read well into ones understanding of the war and the role the ARVN played it.

It is very easy to denigrate the ARVN and in many cases they are saddled with a reputation that is both undeserved and unfairly mean spirited. I for one have a great deal of respect for our former allies and frequently find myself defending them. But a book like this just makes it harder for me to do so.

So, if you already have a firm grasp of the history of the war and the VNAF, you will learn something and will probably find alot of worthwhile info inside the book but a HUGE grain of salt will be required. If your new to the subject, hold off awhile on this one.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Just finished Aces High: The Heroic Saga of the Two Top-Scoring American Aces of WWII by Bill Yenne. This book focuses on Richard Bong and Tommy McGuire and I found it an enjoyable read. It covers both airmen from their prewar days until their deaths in 1945. While I thought the author didn't delve deep enough in some areas, I enjoyed the book for the most part. I really enjoyed the parts about Charles Lindbergh's and Eddie Rickenbacker's interactions with McGuire and Bong. Another part I appreciated was the format of the latter portions of the book where each chapter covered the events of one calendar month. This is a good introduction for anyone interested in the air war in the PTO and McGuire and Bong in particular.

 

It's not a heavy read, if that makes sense but it is a good story...

 

Kevin

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Just finished "INFERNO - The Epic Life And Death Struggle of the USS Franklin in WWII". An excellent read telling the story of this ship from its keel laying to its heroic return to US after being hit by kamikazes of the coast of Japan on March 19, 1945. Heavy on first person stories from the crew. Good read! Bobgee

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PJK Hendrikx

I just finished "The Hidden Legacy of World War II. A Daughter's Journey of Discovery" by Carol Schultz Vento. A highly recommended book about her father paratrooper (portrayed in the movie 'The Longest Day') who suffered from PTSD ever since he returned from the war. An oft forgotten side of 'the good war'. A must read to balance Stephen Ambrose and Tom Brokaw.

 

Peter Hendrikx

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  • 2 weeks later...
A Politician Turned General: The Civil War Career of Stephen Augustus Hurlbut By Jeffrey N. Lash.

I bought this because it was cheap and I wanted a book for quick reference to the commander of the Union forces stationed around Memphis. However I was pleasantly surprised by the book. It is well written in describing this Union general who lived most of his formative hears in the hot-bed of Charleston, SC, while maintaining his stand as a Whig and against slavery. It is fast-paced and covers just what is important while covering some of his political ties that projected him up through the ranks.

It did answer some of my questions about his involvement in using Fort Pillow as a port to ship contraband cotton while pretending to enforce the law among the citizens on Memphis. Brave and dedicated in some battles such as Shiloh but befuddled and extremely cautious in most other operations. After the Fort Pillow fiasco, he was fired by one of his old buddies, General Grant. He was almost court-martialed and the only thing that saved him was the war ended and Grant had a change of heart and decided to forgive and forget.

 

This book will definitely remain on my bookshelf.

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  • 1 month later...

Beyond the Beachhead by Joe Balkowski a great and easy read and a must for anyone who is interested in 29th division history.

 

-Dave

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Beyond the Beachhead by Joe Balkowski a great and easy read and a must for anyone who is interested in 29th division history.

 

-Dave

 

Excellent reading and his best book IMO.

 

Dan.

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