Hunting Che: How a U.S. Special Forces Team Helped Capture the World’s Most Famous Revolutionary
The hunt for Ernesto “Che” Guevera was one of the first successful U.S. Special Forces missions in history. Using government reports and documents, as well as eyewitness accounts, Hunting Che tells the untold story of how the infamous revolutionary was captured – a mission later duplicated in Afghanistan and Iraq.
As one of the architects of the Cuban Revolution, Guevera had become famous for supporting and organizing similar insurgencies in Africa and Latin America. When he turned his attention to Bolivia in 1967, the Pentagon made a decision: Che had to be stopped.
Major Ralph “Pappy” Shelton was called upon to lead the mission. Much was unknown about Che’s force in Bolivia, and the stakes were high. With a handpicked team of Green Berets, Shelton turned Bolivian peasants into a trained fighting and intelligence-gathering force.
Hunting Che follows Shelton’s American team and the newly formed Bolivian Rangers through the hunt to Che’s eventual capture and execution. With the White House and the Pentagon monitoring every move, Shelton and his team helped prevent another Communist threat from taking root in the West.
Valleys of Death: A Memoir of the Korean War with Bill Richardson
Caught in the Chinese counterattack at Unsan-one of the deadliest American battles of the Cold War Era-Colonel Bill Richardson led an Alamo like defense of the few survivors before being taken prisoner.
The North Koreans marched them through sub-zero weather without food, shelter, or medical attention to the area known as Death Valley. Enduring torture designed to break the mind and body, Richardson remained strong enough to lead his fellow prisoners in resistance, sabotage, and new plans for escape.
Valleys of Death is a stirring story of survival and determination, an intimate look at the soldiers who fought America’s first battle of the cold war in the unvarnished words of one of their own.
Lions of Kandahar: The Story of a Fight Against All Odds with Rusty Bradley
One of the most critical battles of the Afghan War is now revealed as never before. Lions of Kandahar is an inside account from the unique perspective of an active-duty U.S. Army Special Forces commander, an unparalleled warrior with multiple deployments to the theater who has only recently returned from combat there.
Southern Afghanistan was slipping away. That was clear to then-Captain Rusty Bradley as he began his third tour of duty there in 2006. The Taliban and their allies were infiltrating everywhere, poised to reclaim Kandahar Province, their strategically vital onetime capital. To stop them, the NATO coalition launched Operation Medusa, the largest offensive in its history. The battlefield was the Panjwayi Valley, a densely packed warren of walled compounds that doubled neatly as enemy bunkers, lush orchards, and towering marijuana stands, all laced with treacherous irrigation ditches. A mass exodus of civilians heralded the carnage to come.
Dispatched as a diversionary force in support of the main coalition attack, Bradley’s Special Forces A-team and two others, along with their longtime Afghan Army allies, watched from across the valley as the NATO force was quickly engulfed in a vicious counterattack. Key to relieving it and calling in effective air strikes was possession of a modest patch of high ground called Sperwan Ghar. Bradley’s small detachment assaulted the hill and, in the midst of a savage and unforgettable firefight, soon learned they were facing nearly a thousand seasoned fighters — from whom they seized an impossible victory.
Now Bradley recounts the whole remarkable story as it actually happened. The blistering trek across Afghanistan’s infamous Red Desert. The eerie traces of the elusive Taliban. The close relations with the Afghan people and army, a primary mission focus. Sperwan Ghar itself: unremitting waves of fire from machine guns and rocket-propelled grenades; a targeted truck turned into an inferno; the death trap of a cut-off compound. Most important: the men, Americans and Afghans alike — the “shaky” medic with nerves of steel and a surgeon’s hands in battle; the tireless sergeant who seems to be everywhere at once; the soft-spoken intelligence officer with laser-sharp insight; the diminutive Afghan commander with a Goliath-sized heart; the cool maverick who risks all to rescue a grievously wounded comrade — each unique, all indelible in their everyday exercise of extraordinary heroism.
No Way Out: A Story of Valor in the Mountains of Afghanistan with Mitch Weiss
It seemed like an impossible mission right from the start. A Special Forces team planned to land in an enemy-held valley, scale a steep mountain in Afghanistan to surprise and capture a terrorist leader. But before they found the target, the target found them.
The team was caught in a deadly ambush that not only threatened their lives, but the entire mission. The elite soldiers fought for hours, huddled on a small rock ledge as rocket-propelled grenades and heavy machine gun fire rained down on them. With total disregard for their own safety, they tended to their wounded and kept fighting to stay alive.
When the battle finally ended, ten soldiers had earned Silver Stars- the Army’s third highest award for combat valor. It was the most Silver Stars awarded to any unit in one battle since Vietnam.
Based on dozens of interviews with those who were there, No Way Out is a compelling narrative of an epic battle that not only tested the soldiers’ mettle but serves as a cautionary tale: Be careful what you ask a soldier to do because they will die trying to accomplish their mission.
Gentlemen Bastards: On the Ground in Afghanistan with America’s Elite Special Forces
The Green Berets – a legendary corps of soldiers whose exploits made military history. But now, their very identity and role as a fighting force may be forever changed.
Until the war in Iraq, Special Forces were the military’s counterinsurgency experts. Their specialty was going behind enemy lines and training insurgent forces. In Afghanistan, they toppled the Taliban by transforming Northern Alliance fighters into cohesive units.
But in the almost nine years since, Special Forces units have forgone their previous mission, instead focusing on offensive raids. With time running short, the Green Berets are going back to their roots and have started to focus on training Afghan security forces and building an Afghan government one village at a time.
Award-winning journalist Kevin Maurer traveled with a Special Forces team in Afghanistan, finding out first hand the inside story of the lives of this elite group of highly trained soldiers. He witnessed the intense brotherhood built upon the Special Forces? rigorous selection process and arduous training that makes them the smartest soldiers on the battlefield. He also discovered the boredom of chasing an elusive enemy and managing third world cops and the infighting between teammates and other units.
Nine years after the start of the Afghan war, Maurer delivers a compelling account of modern warfare and of a fighting force that is doing everything in its power to achieve victory on a complex twenty-first century battlefield.
No Easy Day: The Firsthand Account of the Mission That Killed Osama Bin Laden
For the first time anywhere, the first-person account of the planning and execution of the Bin Laden raid from a Navy Seal who confronted the terrorist mastermind and witnessed his final moments.
From the streets of Iraq to the rescue of Captain Richard Phillips in the Indian Ocean, and from the mountaintops of Afghanistan to the third floor of Osama Bin Laden’s compound, operator Mark Owen of the U.S. Naval Special Warfare Development Group–commonly known as SEAL Team Six– has been a part of some of the most memorable special operations in history, as well as countless missions that never made headlines.
No Easy Day puts readers alongside Owen and the other handpicked members of the twenty-four-man team as they train for the biggest mission of their lives. The blow-by-blow narrative of the assault, beginning with the helicopter crash that could have ended Owen’s life straight through to the radio call confirming Bin Laden’s death, is an essential piece of modern history.
In No Easy Day, Owen also takes readers onto the field of battle in America’s ongoing War on Terror and details the selection and training process for one of the most elite units in the military. Owen’s story draws on his youth in Alaska and describes the SEALs’ quest to challenge themselves at the highest levels of physical and mental endurance. With boots-on-the-ground detail, Owen describes numerous previously unreported missions that illustrate the life and work of a SEAL and the evolution of the team after the events of September 11. In telling the true story of the SEALs whose talents, skills, experiences, and exceptional sacrifices led to one of the greatest victories in the War on Terror, Mark Owen honors the men who risk everything for our country, and he leaves readers with a deep understanding of the warriors who keep America safe.