May 04 2006

Into the Storm

Published by at 8:25 am under Books

by Tom Clancy

Subtitled “A Study in Command” which is appropriate as this is not ‘a Tom Clancy novel’. Rather, it is the story of a General’s (Fred Frank’s) view of the U.S. Army with a focus on his command of the VII Corp in the first Iraq war. So, it is not a gripper and has taken me about five months to finish. Easy for me to put down and do or read something else. That said, it is not uninteresting and contains a lot of stories and details about how the Army operates and what its like to see a battle unfolding from a commander’s point of view. No stories of blood, guts and hand to hand fighting here.

This is the first military history that I’ve read so I can’t compare it to others. It is to a large part a military biography tracing General Franks from Vietnam to retirement. Naturally, there is an undercurrent of self justification concerning some apparent criticism by some people of his conduct of operations in Iraq but mainly it is the story of the Army in battle and how this commander thought about it and worked at it. Surrounding this core is the story of how the Army’s organization, strategy, and tactics evolved from Vietnam through the end of the cold war and now into the mess we are currently in.

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