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Posted January 1, 2008
I am a student of Special Warfare in the Military and hoped that Mr. Newman might have some interesting information for me in this book. Mr. Newman was of course a professional soldier rather than a scholar or writer, and while 'Guerrillas in the Mist' is not well written from a scholarly point of view I did not think this would matter much as I want information from a war fighter and not a reporter or researcher. I expected minor political digressions, and there are several, but I can look past them in search of a few precious nuggets of real nitty gritty warrior wisdom. Unfortunately Mr. Newman taints whatever good info there might have been with some outrageous proposals. I will try to give you an example of what I mean with the following quotes from 'Guerrillas in the Mist'. On Guerrilla Leadership Traits...page 37, 'Integrity'...'It is truthfulness in thought and deed, and it can be shown by guerrilla leaders of any political persuasion. Once his integrity is lost, the leader will never be able to fully recover it'. Also on page 3 Mr. Newman quotes Mao's 'Three Rules and Eight Remarks for dealing with the civilian populace.'...Rule 2, 'Do not steal from the people.', Rule 3, 'Be neither selfish or unjust.', Remark 4, 'Be honest in your transactions.' These are important tenants for all war fighters to follow. However, later on Mr. Newman recommends the following...page 157, on 'Winning Hearts and Minds'. '...the guerrilla has choices, including ambushing the food convoy before it ever gets to the village it is destined for and lacing the food with a strong but nonfatal poison that makes the people sick.' then later after the villagers recover, 'the guerrillas spread the word that all villagers should use extreme caution when accepting food from the government because a plot was unearthed that called for the poisoning of certain villages by the government.' This is an appalling idea and I don't know of anyone in the American military who would even think of this, much less contemplate its usefulness as a tactic in Special Warfare for the moral implications alone, not to mention the logistical absurdity. I could cite more examples but don't see the need.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.