The Defense of Hill 781: An Allegory of Modern Mechanized Combat

The Defense of Hill 781: An Allegory of Modern Mechanized Combat

by James R. McDonough
     
 

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At the turn of the century a small, humorous book on tactics was published. The Defense of Duffer's Drift quickly became a bestseller and today is still widely read. The Defense of Hill 781 is a modem version of this classic -- a tactical primer with ample funpoking, but with serious lessons to be learned.

Lt. Col. A. Tack Always Finds himself in the California high

Overview

At the turn of the century a small, humorous book on tactics was published. The Defense of Duffer's Drift quickly became a bestseller and today is still widely read. The Defense of Hill 781 is a modem version of this classic -- a tactical primer with ample funpoking, but with serious lessons to be learned.

Lt. Col. A. Tack Always Finds himself in the California high desert, alone, disheveled, confused. A guide soon appears to inform him of his situation: he has died and is now in Purgatory (his humility in the Army was somewhat lacking) where he must atone for past sins. Purgatory is, aptly, the U.S. Army's National Training Center (NTC), and Lt. Col. Always may earn his way out by completing a successful mission. Through a series of six missions, the reader plans and fights with Lt. Col. Always, making the split-second decisions that determine victory or defeat, life or death.

Through successive difficulties, some important lessons are burned into the commander's brain -- lessons about tactics, about people, about what it takes to fight a winning battle. Like Duffer's Drift this book is a valuable resource for all military tacticians. For the armchair general, it is a fascinating look at how the members of a military unit work together in combat.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
In this military primer, a recently deceased U.S. Army officer by the name of A. Tack Always is denied entrance into Valhalla and assigned to a purgatory-like base in the Nevada desert, where he is required to learn a vital lesson before being cleared for transfer to the final objective in the sky. A field-problem has been laid on for the lieutenant colonel, who abruptly finds himself commanding a ghostly unit built around Abrams tanks and Bradley Fighting Vehicles. The bulk of this curious, sometimes amusing tale has to do with the officer's escalating command problems in a furious battle against an ``aggressor force'' armed with the latest Soviet weapons and equipment. McDonough (Platoon Leader) provides a technically up-to-date picture of the way a U.S. mechanized battalion would be expected to perform if our forces were to tangle with their most imposing counterparts. War-college instructors will find the scenario useful as a textbook, but lay readers, other than hardcore military buffs, will find the book odd. (June)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780891414759
Publisher:
Random House Publishing Group
Publication date:
06/28/1993
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
224
Sales rank:
1,104,458
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.50(d)

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