I don’t mean to turn this blog into a review site, but I felt as if I needed to write about a book I recently read. This has easily been one of the best books I have read this year. But, it certainly was not due to the stellar writing, in fact even though Marcus Luttrell used a professional writer to help tell his story, the book is just poorly written. And the conservative, flag-waving, jingoistic preaching is a bit over-whelming at times.
However, the story of this SEAL team’s heroism is so compelling that I just could not put the book down. Deep in Taliban held Afghanistan, Luttrell’s SEAL team had a decision to make, kill a group of three shepherds who found their hiding spot, or let them go, knowing that they would inform the Taliban as to their whereabouts. Shortly after letting them go, they were attacked by a 200 crazed Taliban, intent on kill the four American SEALs.
Operation Redwing was aimed at capturing or killing Ahmad Shah, a Taliban leader in Kunar province whose attacks had been taking a heavy toll on Marines operating in eastern Afghanistan. The four SEALs,Lt. Michael Murphy, Sonar Technician (Surface) 2nd Class Matthew Axelson, Gunner’s Mate 2nd Class Danny Dietz and Luttrell were the leading edge of the operation, charged with locating Shah and his forces.
The battle went from bad to worse when the Taliban shot down the MH-47 Chinook helicopter carrying the quick reaction force that was sent out to rescue the SEAL team, killing all 16 personnel on board, eight SEALs and eight aviators from the Army’s 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment.
Even before the book reaches the action packed battle scenes, the author goes into a very personal reflection of his life and his journey through SEAL training. The author’s description of what is required to become a Navy SEAL is vivid and intense. After reading what those soldiers go through, you can’t help but feel that Navy SEALs are true American heroes and tough as nails.
If you don’t get a chance to read the book, it is rumored that a movie based on the book will be released sometime next year. If you have already read the book, tell me what you think. Is Marcus Luttrell an American hero? Would you want your son or daughter to see him as a role-model?
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