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The book includes a new chapter on what happened to the platoon members when they came home. Read less. Kindle Cloud Reader Read instantly in your browser. Frequently bought together. Total price:.
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now. About the Author Frederick Downs Jr. He lives in Fort Washington, Maryland. Brief content visible, double tap to read full content. Full content visible, double tap to read brief content. Help others learn more about this product by ing a video! Customer reviews.
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Top reviews Most recent Top reviews. Top reviews from the United States. There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later. Verified Purchase. It provides amazing insight into what was going on in his mind and around him as he learns to adapt to the chaos of combat while keeping his men alive. Those that bore him at birth and those that bore him at death. The only important thing was what he did in between.
Duty, Honor, Country, Courage, Sacrifice and more. This book has it all. It is quite evident from one that this book won't end well. This is a very realistic portrayal of what life was like in an army platoon in Vietnam in the late 's.
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Unlike many other military books I have read where soldiers "find" themselves in the middle of all hell breaking loose, this book is a week-to-week of one year in a platoon. Each of the soldiers in this platoon KNOW that on any given day they may be killed or maimed, yet they continue to head out into the jungle on various missions day in and day out. It's hard to imagine courage and sacrifice like that. It was tough enough to turn the s so it must have been unbearable to have been in this platoon as member after member becomes a casualty. The author makes two very astute points: 1.
The platoon would spend a week or two in a given location. As they explored their new territory, the platoon would inevitably be attacked or walk across mines or booby traps. As time went on they got to know their surroundings and became better and safer warriors able to inflict damage on the enemy. Just when they would hit a relative comfort zone, they would be airlifted out and dropped into a completely different terrain only to repeat the pattern.
At the same time, their original position was replaced with a new platoon with no experience in the area. As a result, each platoon incurred additional casualties until they became familiar with the new area. Then the pattern would repeat again. What was the point of this type of strategy?
In many stages of the book the platoon bumps into South Vietnamese soldiers who are either sitting around doing nothing or "training" for months and years at a time without ing the combat. Why were we fighting their war?
Another great question. Overall, a very thoughtful book where you come to root for this very brave band of brothers who have been sent on an impossible series of missions. I've read many s about the undeclared war in Vietnam written by the men who fought the battles and humped the jungles on search and destroy mission.
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Each time I am amazed at the dedication, honor and valor our braves soldiers displayed in the field. Although physically and mentally exhausted, quitting was not an option. They battled hunger, thirst, sickness, insects and creatures of all sorts in pursuit of the elusive enemy who could be right there watching and waiting. The fear they tried to bury it within themselves but it was always there gnawing at your gut. The Killing Zone is an exceptional true story.
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It is a story that grabs you and won't let go. You gut tense on every patrol. You know it's coming, but you don't know when.
The mud, the heat, the mosquito! You can almost feel them as the author describes each mission. You get to know the soldiers in the platoon and you hold your breath each time there is a KIA. Downs, from one grunt to another, thank you for sharing your story. I wondered why there was so much pressure This book captures just how difficult it was for U.
The enemy was everywhere and could appear or disappear easily. I wondered why there was so much pressure on the troops to report enemy kills and weapons captured.
But then reading Dereliction of Duty it became clear - McNamara was data centric and measured US progress according to the of enemy killed and weapons captured. I was in Vietnam in July and visited a place where there were tunnels used by the Viet Cong. We were told the VC had created miles of tunnels over a 20 year period. The tunnels we saw had special traps where a US soldier would fall into a pit filled with bamboo spikes.
The heat and humidity I experienced in Vietnam made all the more vivid the s in the book about the conditions under which our soldiers fought. This book should be read with other books such as Dereliction of Duty by H. Together they show how ignorant we were of Vietnam history and how we were obsessed with the domino theory and failed to understand that Ho Chi Minh and his allies were most interested in independence after centuries of Chinese domination and then at least 70 years of French domination. See all reviews.