Outlaw Platoon: Heroes, Renegades, Infidels, and the Brotherhood of War in Afghanistan

( 180 )

Overview

In combat, men measure up. Or don't. There are no second chances.

In this vivid account of the U.S. Army's legendary 10th Mountain Division's heroic stand in the mountains of Afghanistan, Captain Sean Parnell shares an action-packed and highly emotional true story of triumph, tragedy, and the extraordinary bonds forged in battle.

At twenty-four years of age, U.S. Army Ranger Sean Parnell was named commander of a forty-man elite infantry ...

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Outlaw Platoon: Heroes, Renegades, Infidels, and the Brotherhood of War in Afghanistan

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Overview

In combat, men measure up. Or don't. There are no second chances.

In this vivid account of the U.S. Army's legendary 10th Mountain Division's heroic stand in the mountains of Afghanistan, Captain Sean Parnell shares an action-packed and highly emotional true story of triumph, tragedy, and the extraordinary bonds forged in battle.

At twenty-four years of age, U.S. Army Ranger Sean Parnell was named commander of a forty-man elite infantry platoon—a unit that came to be known as the Outlaws—and was tasked with rooting out Pakistan-based insurgents from a mountain valley along Afghanistan's eastern frontier. Parnell and his men assumed they would be facing a ragtag bunch of civilians, but in May 2006 what started out as a routine patrol through the lower mountains of the Hindu Kush became a brutal ambush. Barely surviving the attack, Parnell's men now realized that they faced the most professional and seasoned force of light infantry the U.S. Army had encountered since the end of World War II.

What followed was sixteen months of close combat, over the course of which the platoon became Parnell's family: from Staff Sergeant Greg Greeson, the wise, chain-smoking veteran who never lost his cool; to Specialist Robert Pinholt, a buttoned-down conservative with the heart of a warrior and the mind of an economist; to Staff Sergeant Phil Baldwin, the platoon's voice of calm and reason, a man who sacrificed everything following the events of 9/11—career, home, financial stability—to serve his country. But the cost of battle was high for these men: Over 80 percent were wounded in action, putting their casualty rate among the highest since Gettysburg, and not all of them made it home.

A searing and unforgettable story of friendship in battle, Outlaw Platoon brings to life the intensity and raw emotion of those sixteen months, showing how the fight reshaped the lives of Parnell and his men and how the love and faith they found in one another ultimately kept them alive.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Former Army officer Parnell and collaborator Bruning (Shadow of the Sword) reprise Parnell’s 16 months as an infantry platoon leader in Afghanistan in this heartfelt memoir. In 2006, Parnell and his 10th Mountain Division platoon, the self-styled Outlaws, arrived in Afghanistan’s Bermel Valley, which borders Pakistan. Their mission was “to stanch the flow of enemy troops and supplies into Afghanistan.” Besides their 32 Purple Hearts, the platoon—which “usually patrolled with about 30 men... loaded into six Humvees”—earned seven Bronze Stars and 12 Army Commendations for Valor, making it one of the most decorated units in the Afghan war. Parnell vividly captures the sounds, sights, and smells of combat, and proves most eloquent when describing the bond—“selflessness was our secret weapon”—that developed among his men. Studiously nonpartisan, Parnell still raises important questions about Afghan president Hamid Karzai’s integrity, the competence of the Afghan police, and the sincerity of our Pakistani “allies.” Parnell balances sentimentality with sincerity and crisp prose to produce one of the Afghan war’s most moving combat narratives. Agent: Jim Hornfischer, Hornfischer Literary Management. (Mar.)
Library Journal
This is the story of a brotherhood of soldiers whose bond was forged in the fire of battle during an intense year of fighting against insurgents in Afghanistan. Parnell, a highly decorated former U.S. Army Airborne ranger now working on his Ph.D. in clinical psychology, writes candidly about the struggles of leadership, the emotional toll of losing friends to war, and the fight against enemies known and unknown. He relives specific battles, and his retelling of the stories reads at times like an adventure novel, full of adrenaline. Parnell witnesses firsthand betrayals by so-called American allies—Afghan military leaders, interpreters, and Pakistani military and government representatives who share information and lend support to the Taliban—while also developing a deep trust in his own platoon. His description of the torture and mutilation of civilians, particularly children, by the enemy is brutal and not for the faint of heart. VERDICT A stark reminder of war's toll on honorable women and men, this book will be of interest to military historians and those looking for a kick-in-the-gut picture of the U.S. war in Afghanistan.—Lt. Col. Martha Bauder, U.S. Army Reserve, Mesa, AZ
Kirkus Reviews
Grim, gritty account of infantry combat on the Afghanistan-Pakistan border, from a youthful lieutenant determined to act nobly amid violence and chaos. In 2006, Parnell was a neophyte Army Airborne Ranger with the storied 10th Mountain Division, assigned as a new platoon leader in Afghanistan, desperate to prove himself: "In combat, men measure up. Or fail. There are no second chances." This honesty about emotional and sensory aspects of combat drives this narrative more than overt commentary on the Afghanistan mission. As it happened, Parnell received many opportunities to prove himself in battle. The narrative develops around several grueling set pieces, in which Parnell's platoon was ambushed by an insurgent faction that unexpectedly turned out to be a skilled, disciplined and cold-blooded fighting force, determined to win a propaganda victory by brutalizing an American platoon. These raw, controlled scenes of battle seemingly benefit from the authorial collaboration: Besides being a prolific author of military histories, Bruning (Chasing Shadows: A Special Agent's Lifelong Hunt to Bring a Cold War Assassin to Justice, 2011, etc.) embedded himself with a combat unit in Afghanistan in 2010. The result is a carefully rendered account of Parnell's tour, with verisimilitude provided by extensive specific details illustrating the sheer complexity of modern combat, as well as the frustrating officer politics on remote bases. Parnell focuses on the experiences of several platoon members, and he writes that it is brotherly love that bonds soldiers in combat, ensuring their survival. He also observes his comrades' deep ambivalence toward their Pakistani allies and the Afghani people's willingness to reform and defend their society. The book's main flaw is a repetitiveness that becomes mawkish: Points about the soldiers' personal burdens and the bond of brotherhood in combat are made so often that they become less rather than more effective. This flaw, however, may not bother the book's intended audience. Well-told combat narrative that raises disturbing questions about America's professionalized military and the post-9/11 objectives with which they've been tasked.
Pittsburgh Tribune
“The range of emotions that Sean Parnell summons in Outlaw Platoon [is] stunning. A nuanced, compelling memoir . . . Parnell shows he’s a gifted, brave storyteller.”
Chris Kyle
Outlaw Platoon put me back on the battlefield again. It’s a heartfelt story that shows how very different people can be thrown together in combat and find a way to make it work. Parnell and the soldiers who fought beside him are all courageous heroes—real bad asses.”
Brad Thor
“Two of the most intense tales of courage under fire I own are Black Hawk Down and Lone Survivor. I now have a third, Outlaw Platoon. It’s an absolutely gripping, edge-of-your-seat ride.”
Tim O'Brien
Outlaw Platoon is an utterly gripping account of what our soldiers endure on the front lines—the frustrations, the fear, the loneliness. . . Here, in these pages, are the on-the-ground realities of a war we so rarely witness on news broadcasts”
Marcus Luttrell
Outlaw Platoon is an exceptional look into the mind of a platoon leader in Afghanistan; Captain Parnell shares his experiences of leadership, loss, and aggressive military tactics. You can really feel the bonds forged between these brothers in arms as the battle plays out”
Doug Stanton
“At times, I forgot I was reading about a war as I was drawn up in the drama the same way you [are] when reading Krakauer’s Into Thin Air . . . This is a book of probing honesty, wrenching drama and courage.”
Steven Pressfield
“[A] soulful story of men at war . . . Outlaw Platoon shows us that the love and brotherhood forged in the fires of combat are the most formidable quaities a unit can possess.”
Clive Cussler
Outlaw Platoon is expertly told by a man who braved the heat of battle time and time again. An epic story as exacting as it is suspenseful, it reveals the bravery and dedication of our armed service men and women around the world.”
Kevin Sites
“Sean Parnell reaches past the band-of-brothers theme to a place of brutal self-awareness . . . [he] never flinches from a fight, nor the hard questions of a messy war.”
Jack Coughlin
“This book is more than just a rip-roaring combat narrative: it is a profoundly moving exploration into the nature and evolution of the warrior bond forged in desperate, against-all-odds battles. A significant book, not to be missed.”
Bing West
Outlaw Platoon is the real deal. It’s a terrific tale of combat leadership that deserves to be studied by all small-unit leaders. The narrative goes beyond the battlefield to depict the maddening nature of the war and the grit of those who selflessly protect us.”
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780062066398
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 2/28/2012
  • Pages: 384
  • Sales rank: 292,953
  • Product dimensions: 5.80 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Sean Parnell is a former U.S. Army airborne ranger who served in the legendary 10th Mountain Division for six years, retiring as a captain. He received two Bronze Stars (one for valor) and the Purple Heart. He is currently working on his Ph.D. in clinical psychology at Duquesne University. He lives with his wife and two children in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

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Read an Excerpt

Outlaw Platoon


By Sean Parnell

HarperCollins Publishers

Copyright © 2013 Sean Parnell
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-0-06-206640-4


Excerpt

CHAPTER 1

GAME FACES


Speedometer needles touching fifty, Outlaw Platoon's six armored Humvees blasted down the Afghan road, trailing plumes of dust that could be seen for miles. In an area that lacked even a single asphalt highway, this was the best dirt road we'd yet encountered. Smoothed and tempered by generations of passing travelers, it had no cart tracks to give our shock absorbers a workout, no drifts of desert dust to bog us down. After weeks of cross-country patrols so jarring they knocked fillings loose, our run south through the district of Gamal seemed as effortless as taking a lap at Daytona Speedway.

In Afghanistan, we Americans have to adjust our transportation expectations. We are used to traveling fast. The men of my platoon favored muscle cars such as GTOs and Mustangs, or suspension lifted pickup trucks. Out here, the terrain rarely allowed us to go more than fifteen or twenty miles per hour. It was like being stuck in a perpetual school crossing zone.

Today, when we turned onto this unusual stretch of road, our drivers capitalized on the opportunity. They grew lead feet and poured on the coals. The speed felt glorious.

The road bisected a broad valley six hours' drive south of our base at Bermel. In this flat, treeless area, the only sign of life we'd seen for miles was patches of rugged plants that had somehow thrived in an environment of extremes: heat and cold, drought and floods. To our left, a wadi veined through the ancient landscape. Earlier, we had tried to use it to traverse the valley in the hope of avoiding roadside bombs. As our rigs splashed through the trickle of water at the bottom, Staff Sergeant Phil Baldwin's Humvee sank to its doors in quicksand. So much for that idea.

Steep ridges defined the valley's boundaries. Even without a tree or a bush to give color to their slopes, these spines of the Hindu Kush still gave refuge to our enemy. They ceded us the low ground while they hid out in well-stocked caves that had been in use since the Soviet war of the 1980s.

The signs of that war lingered. During this drive south, we'd seen the skeletal remains of villages cratered by Russian bombs. In the surviving towns, the locals told us horror stories of the Soviet occupation. One farmer spoke of watching his son be thrown to the ground and stomped to death by laughing Red Army troops. After that, his entire village had braved the harsh mountains to escape on foot to a refugee camp in Pakistan.

This was our area of operations, a harsh and barren land whose people had known nothing but violence for decades.

I glanced over at my driver and radioman, Specialist Robert Pinholt. We'd been on the road since dawn, and his face was striped with dirt and sweat. His helmet rode low over his brow, his uniform and body armor powdered with Afghan dust. The only time we were ever truly clean was in the shower. When he sensed my gaze, he tore his eyes from the road to steal a quick look at me.

"What, sir?" he asked. His piercing blue eyes stood in contrast to the dull grime on his face. He was a broad-chested twenty-year-old with earnest good looks and an engaging smile. If he'd been in overalls instead of ACUs, he'd have looked like an extra on the set of Green Acres.

He'd been railing about the U.S. Postal Service again, and I couldn't help but laugh at his passionate hatred for this small section of our federal government.

"Pinholt," I said, "I don't understand where all this hostility comes from." "What do you mean, sir? Isn't it obvious? The government's violating the Sherman Antitrust Act of 1890. It has a captive monopoly and can cross subsidize to expand into other business areas, undercutting the private corporations that compete in those areas." Government waste was one of Pinholt's biggest pet peeves. So far, he'd managed almost an hour's rant on the post office. I was impressed.

"Sir, look: not privatizing the post office is just bad fiscal policy. They've got seventy billion in unfunded liabilities, they're running billions in the red every year in a business where everyone else is in the black, and they compete unfairly against UPS and FedEx." "They deliver the fucking mail, Pinholt. My shit gets from point A to point B quickly, and that's all I care about. What more do you want?"

He ignored me. "The post office is tax exempt. That's one advantage. It is free of SEC reporting requirements. Its accounting procedures would trigger an IRS investigation in any other American corporation. The postmaster can go to the U.S. Treasury and borrow money whenever he wants, at rates no private company could ever get."

"So?" I asked, goading him. Pinholt had the heart of a warrior, but the mind of an economist. I loved to provoke him, as he usually had very well thought out opinions. Plus, the more I got to know him, the more I realized he was a case study in contrasts, and that intrigued me. He was a Texas native who spoke without an accent. Dallas born and raised, he hated the Cowboys and loved the Don Shula–era Dolphins. He was a buttoned-down conservative who didn't touch liquor, didn't smoke or even drink caffeine, but in his spare time I'd catch him listening to hippie rock like Phish. He had a thing for opera, too.

"So?" he said in surprise. "Even with all those advantages the post office is a huge drain on the taxpayers! Even the European Union's privatizing their mail delivery. Think about that. All those socialist countries are going that route, while we let the federal government mismanage a business that would otherwise make billions. And those billions would be taxable. Instead of a drain on the budget, mail delivery could be a revenue enhancer."

With nothing else to do but talk or debate, those long vehicular patrols were like college road trips with heavy weapons.

We came to a slight bend in the road. "Hey, watch out, Pinholt." I warned. He was drifting a bit again, distracted by our conversation. This happened a lot. "Don't try to kill us twice in one day." That annoyed him, "Come on, sir. That's getting old already." "Hey, you almost drove us off a cliff. You're never going to live that down."

Earlier that day, we'd had to negotiate a treacherous mountain trail to get into this valley. It wound down a cliff in a series of switchbacks so sharp that our Humvees couldn't take them without our drivers executing three-point turns. On one, Pinholt had edged the nose of our rig over the cliff, shifted into reverse, and gunned the gas. Unfortunately, our rigs had been beaten up by months of hard use. The transmissions, which had not been designed for all the weight our armored Humvees now carried, sometimes stuck or jammed. In this case, ours didn't move out of drive. We lurched forward and almost went over the edge. The rig teetered on the brink as we all started to scream at Pinholt. I grabbed my gunner, Chris Brown, and yanked him inside the rig out of fear he'd be thrown clear if we did go over. Not that it would have mattered. The valley floor was at least five hundred feet below us.

Truth was, I was impressed by how Pinholt came through in the clutch. He stayed calm, shifted gears again, and waited to hit the gas until he was absolutely certain the transmission was functioning properly. When he heard a soft thunk as it finally shifted into reverse, he eased off the brake and backed us away from the brink. We'd been harassing him unmercifully ever since.

"Gettin' old, sir," he said again.

"Tell you what, I'll lay off when you give me my MREs back." Pinholt knew I was a picky eater. Before leaving on patrols, he made a point to purloin my favorite MREs - meals ready to eat - and hide them, just to get a rise out of me. We'd had a running battle for weeks over this.

"I'll think about it, sir."

"You're a hell of a radioman, Pinholt. But I swear to God, you drive like a blind old lady."

"Awww, sir, cheap!"

The late afternoon sun perched atop the ridge lines, spilling red-gold light across the valley. We sped along, each Humvee topped by an armored turret with a heavy weapon mounted inside. Our five machine guns and one automatic grenade launcher gave our gunners ready access to more firepower than any other platoon from any other war. Our dads in Vietnam could have used this much heat. When combined with the thirty men and six vehicles we had, Outlaw Platoon possessed muscle, mobility, and numbers to handle almost any challenge. Even if we got in over our heads, we had my radios. With them, I could call in artillery, unleash helicopter gunships, or target satellite guided bombs on our enemy. In the month since we'd arrived in country, the enemy had remained elusive and we had yet to encounter them in a stand-up fight. Yet the hills had eyes. I had a nagging sense that we were always being watched. Studied, really. We were the new kids in town, and they knew enough about the U.S. Army to know that units, like people, have their own quirks. Some are disciplined; some are lax. Some are aggressive; some are timid. Until they figured us out, they were content to observe. But sooner or later, I knew they would pick a time and place to give us our first test. The road curved slightly as it followed the lip of the wadi. As we came around the bend, I could see our destination rising out of the valley floor along the horizon. A hundred and fifty years ago, the British had constructed a redoubt atop a sheer walled mesa that dominated the entire southern half of the valley. From the base of the mesa, the slate colored cliffs rose almost straight up for a full kilometer before flattening to a narrow plateau. The mud walls of the old British fort ran along the edge of the plateau. Medieval style towers abutted the walls at regular intervals.

This was Bandar, the most important coalition base in the area. It towered over the valley road, affording the soldiers atop it a clear view of the traffic moving below. Because of that, it was a natural choke point, one that was virtually impregnable to attack thanks to its thousand meter cliffs. No insurgent force could ever scale them- hell, not even the Rangers who'd taken Pointe du Hoc on D-Day could have climbed them under fire.

We drew close, and our drivers eased off the gas. We reached an intersection and turned toward the mesa. The road narrowed and entered the northern cliff face. We could see how long dead British engineers had blasted through the sheer rock to build the track up to the fort. It would be an impressive feat today, let alone in the 1850s.

"Pinholt," I said as we stared at the steep road ahead.

Before I could continue he interrupted me. "Sir, I know. I know." We stopped, and one of my men jumped out to guide us forward. As we inched along, the clearance between the cliff on one side and the sheer drop on the other diminished until we barely had a meter on either side of us. I would not have even been able to open my door if I had wanted to. Pinholt stayed on the ball and did a good job.

The track snaked up the mesa, making regular forty-five degree turns, until we reached the fort's front gate. The original entrance had been destroyed long before and had been replaced by strands of concertina wire stretched across a metal framed gate.

A rusted conex box had been placed nearby to give the guards cover from the elements. I saw no fighting positions nearby, but in the distance a Soviet-era ZU-23 double-barreled antiaircraft cannon stood silhouetted against the twilight sky.

A teenage Afghan Border Policeman (ABP) wearing a green camouflage jacket, khaki pants, and a Chicago Bulls 1990 National Championship cap stepped out of the conex to greet us. His AK-47 dangled carelessly at his side. Flecks of rust marred its receiver; the magazine was dinged and scuffed.

Ancient gear, poorly kept. I made a note of that.

Our 'terp, Abdul, spoke a few words to the guard, and he waved us through the entrance, pulling the gate open as he eyed us with interest. We rolled into the fort. As we passed the ZU-23, I could see it was but a rusted hulk. There was no way it could be returned to firing condition. Hell, it had probably been there since the Reagan era.

Here and there, Afghan Border Policemen stood with their weapons slung haphazardly. Some smoked home-rolled cigarettes. All of them looked stupefied with boredom. They stared at us as we passed as if we'd come from a different planet.

Neglect and age had combined to leave the fort in a state of near ruin, something we could not detect as we made our approach along the valley's floor. Now we slid by crumbled guard towers, their wooden frames jutting out of the hardened mud like ancient bones. A few old buildings still had enough walls and roof left to be used to store equipment and supplies in. The rest of them were of little use to anyone except, perhaps, military archaeologists. The outer wall had many gaps, which had been haphazardly screened with strands of concertina wire. If it hadn't been for the thousand meter cliffs, the place would have been a catastrophe waiting to happen.
(Continues...)


Excerpted from Outlaw Platoon by Sean Parnell. Copyright © 2013 by Sean Parnell. Excerpted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 180 )
Rating Distribution

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(137)

4 Star

(26)

3 Star

(5)

2 Star

(4)

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(8)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 180 Customer Reviews
  • Posted February 28, 2012

    Great book!!! I definately recommend you buy and read it!!!

    This book is fantastic. It is so well written you feel like you know the men in the story personally and you are right there experiencing what they go through. You don't need to be a huge military buff to read it either. The book exposes war and the bond it forges between the men who fight in it. It evokes so many emotions highs and lows---on top of that it is a real page turner. I finished the book in a few days, I couldn't put it down. It is a story of an amazing group of men and I'm so glad their story has been told! Read this book, I promise you won't regret it!

    21 out of 30 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 17, 2012

    As a member of Outlaw Platoon, I can not stress enough the impor

    As a member of Outlaw Platoon, I can not stress enough the importance of this book to our nation's forgotten infantry soldiers. Outlaw Platoon is an honest and compelling account of life and death in the trenches and does true justice to our combat experience.

    As you read this post, there are thousands of men on battlefields around the world killing and suffering for the preservation of American ideals. As a civilized society and beneficiaries of our nation's might, we must meet their sacrifices with unwavering support. It is not enough for us to adhere a yellow ribbon to our cars, to shake a soldier's hand, or even to send care packages to the front. More than anything, these men need our understanding. They need to know that we are aware of their plight, that we are invested in their success, and that we are willing to help shoulder the burdens of combat, just by listening and caring.

    Outlaw Platoon is a window into the world of America's infantry warriors. In the book, Sean puts you on the ground in Afghanistan, straps 100 pounds of gear on your back, and injects you into the fight. However, he also introduces you to the human side of the war, highlighting the exceptional diversity of the platoon and the strength that it generates, as well as the horrifying realities of life for Afghani civilians.

    Not only is Outlaw Platoon a thrilling, emotionally-charged read, it is a tool for healing the wounded souls of our discarded patriots and reuniting the American people with the guardians of our way of life. It is our undeniable duty as Americans to share the load of our foreign wars, and by simply reading Outlaw Platoon with a compassionate heart, we are doing our part for the men we put in harm's way.

    18 out of 25 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 9, 2012

    A Must Read

    How do you write a review for such a book, I struggle to find the words. As the mother of an infantryman who will be back in Afghanistan within a matter of days, the book frightened me, it broke my heart, and I wept a time or two in the reading of it. Yet it gave me a glimpse into the life of the Infantry, helped me to understand why it is difficult for these men we love to share their experiences. It made me proud and grateful that such men live, and it made me yearn for peace. The story of Outlaw Platoon is well written, and the inner thoughts and feelings of Sean the young Lt leading the platoon give the reader insight into what combat is like, and what it does to the hearts, minds and souls of the men who endure it. My words do not do justice to the book, but I hope that you will read it for yourself, I truly wish every American would read it, for the story is worthy and needs to be told.

    17 out of 24 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 3, 2012

    War is hell to the soldier in a combat zone and completely unfat

    War is hell to the soldier in a combat zone and completely unfathomable to any person fortunate enough to never experience it. Outlaw Platoon will bring the reader to the mountains of Afghanistan where they will get a clear look into the psychology, emotions, pains, and triumphs of America’s service personnel. Outlaw Platoon is an honest, gritty, and no-holds-barred depiction of combat through the eyes of a young officer.

    While not writing this for dramatic effect, I view Captain Parnell as a modern day Major Winters, i.e., a humble, dedicated, competent, hero that puts the needs of his men far beyond his own. Captain Parnell modestly credits his NCOs for holding the platoon together, but good leadership starts at the top. As a former NCO, it is clear to me that Captain Parnell is the heart of the platoon.

    Many former military personnel try not to relive horrific experiences endured while deployed. I see it as pure bravery and the need to enlighten others that Captain Parnell wrote this story.

    Outlaw Platoon is so gripping that it took me less than 6 hours to read the entire book, for it was impossible to put down. This is a story that needs to be told. I highly recommend this book to anyone considering a military career, anyone that served, and to anyone that wishes to have a greater understanding of America’s warriors.

    God bless Captain Parnell and the brave men that served under his command in Afghanistan.

    15 out of 22 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 5, 2012

    A worthy read

    I typically do not read this type of book but I went out on a limb & am glad I did. It is one of those books that grabs your attention & just sweeps you up in the story. The author balances the gritty, horrific aspects of modern warfare with the respect & devotion to life and to each other that the platoon members develop over the course of their deployment. It is a gripping tale that will leave you reflecting upon how dedicated our servicemen are to us & wondering just how dedicated America is to them...

    9 out of 15 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 5, 2012

    This book is great. I was a member of this platoon and as I have

    This book is great. I was a member of this platoon and as I have been reading this book I have relived alot of these moments where I was when all this was going on. It is a great book and I would recommend it to everyone if they want to know what its like to be in combat. Great book Sean.

    8 out of 14 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 29, 2012

    Great Job Lt. Parnell!

    This book is an amazing depiction of war through the eyes of an American Hero. Our men do not get enough credit for the sacrifices they make and things they endure on the front lines. Once you start reading you will not stop until you have finished the book. Emotionally gripping account of the everyday lives of American warriors on the boarder of Pakistan; one of the most dangerous areas in the entire country of Afghanistan. Support our men and get a copy for yourself!

    8 out of 16 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 28, 2012

    Good Job Sean!

    An excellent read, this book will make you understand the bonds of brotherhood second only to being a part of it. If you life reading, you will like this book.

    8 out of 16 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 28, 2012

    Wow!

    This book was an excellent read! This is a book you will want to finish in one sitting, as you are pulled right into the story from the first page!

    8 out of 15 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 6, 2012

    Outlaws

    I read it online on google books for free but didn't take much away from it. I was mostly interested in how that platoon were outlaws. In my experience the military tends to be very by the books and against bad apples who do not follow the law in rules of engagement and the ucmj.

    7 out of 34 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 28, 2012

    Read this book! A must read!

    I have been waiting for this book to come out so I could read it! When I got it in the mail I couldn't put it down. I read it all day and it was great! I absolutely loved it! It is so good because it brings out so many different emotions as you read it. The author makes you feel like you are there with those men---who are a bunch of entertaining characters for sure! I highly recommend this book. Please pick it up and read it--you will be glad you did.

    6 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 28, 2012

    The next Band of Brothers

    I have been waiting for this book a long time now. I actually got it last night and I skipped worked today so I could read it. This book tells a story unlike any other. It proves why America’s military is a force to be reckoned with. The members of Outlaw Platoon forged not only a bond but an everlasting love and respect for one another, one that can never be duplicated. During the book I laughed, I cried, I grew angry and in the end cheered. All I have to say is OUTLAWS 4-LIFE.

    6 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 22, 2012

    average

    hoping it would be better. not bad, but a bit average among war memoirs

    5 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 6, 2012

    .

    .

    5 out of 20 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 16, 2012

    Riveting from cover to cover

    A compelling story that opens one's eyes. Proud father of an Outlaw Platoon member.

    5 out of 12 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 6, 2012

    Finished the book in just a few sittings - usually read mysterie

    Finished the book in just a few sittings - usually read mysteries & thrillers and this book did not disappoint. It provoked a wide range of emotions and left me in wonder of all our servicemen (and women) that put their lives on the line daily. I am recommending this to my book club and to anyone who is looking for a great read.

    5 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 3, 2012

    I truly enjoyed reading 'Outlaw Platoon'... This was an intrigu

    I truly enjoyed reading 'Outlaw Platoon'... This was an intriguing story that kept me interested from the first page. Sean Parnell is a compassionate and caring person and an awesome leader to his men. Do yourself a favor and buy this book, and get ready to read a story about some of the bravest young men our country has ever seen...

    5 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 29, 2012

    Extremely recommended-a must read!

    I was able to get this long anticipated book the day before the official release. This book expertly chronicles the trials any infantry platoon leader can expect: from the undying respect Parnell has for the men in his platoon to the fear he feels for each one of his men's lives, this is how infantry platoon leaders need to be. This man sets a new standard.

    5 out of 12 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 8, 2012

    One star

    One star from an avid military history reader. Frankly, I don't understand all the positive feedback.

    Even bestsellers that have been around for years and sold millions of copies don't get this many ratings. I suspect the authors - along with their friends and family - are constantly hyping it.

    4 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 24, 2012

    One big lie. As a member of Bravo Company 2/87 who was there,

    One big lie.

    As a member of Bravo Company 2/87 who was there, I can tell you this book is a bunch of lies. From the details of the firefights to the claims of injuries. Even those who served in 3rd Platoon admit most of their purple hearts are ridiculous. True a lot were earned but many were not. Parnell forced his men to go to the aid station so they could get purple hearts. That is why they all got kicked out until he made a fuss. He himself got laughed out for his "injuries". He also got his bronze star with valor after he made a subordinate write up the award for him. By the way it was a silver star he put in for but the BC scoffed and said he doesn't get a silver star for doing his job.

    4 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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