Describes the Green Berets, including their history, weapons, and way of life.
Children's Literature - Barbara L. TalcroftSwords, lances, bows and arrows, bombs, M-14sweapons of war fill this "Warriors of History" series designed to capture the attention of boys who may be reluctant to read but are well attuned to the constant violence and bloodshed of films, games, and the daily news. Each title introduces a military organization or cult in four chapters, often including a gruesome incident to add a thrill. Some of the titles are better than others; some contain mistakesall offer unattributed illustrations (a major fault of this series) ranging from modern photographs to period prints or paintings. In Green Berets, chapters describe origins of the special force after World War II, selection and training of a Green Beret, duties of the force with emphasis given to need for "creativity" and "working with local peoples," and today's missions presented as helping "keep others safe." Although the activities of this force have often been controversial, the author's focus is strictly neutralonly one incident from Vietnam is related; interventions in El Salvador, Colombia, and Panama are not mentioned. Though still a source of emotional reactions pro and con (see you tube), the popular film starring John Wayne (1968) and the song, Ballad of the Green Beret, are not discussed at all, even their propaganda effects. Photographs (from several periods) and text reflect mainly a fascination with the technical details of training and weapons. Parents and teachers will need to decide whether a series focusing on war, violence, and cruelty is appropriate for their children's classrooms. Reviewer: Barbara L. Talcroft
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