Shadow Warriors: Inside the Special Forces

Shadow Warriors: Inside the Special Forces

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by Tom Clancy, Tony Koltz, Jonathon Marosz, Carl Stiner
     
 

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"Shadow Warriors is the third in an extraordinary series of nonfiction books - a look deep into modern unconventional warfare, as seen through the eyes of one of America's outstanding commanders." "The training, resourcefulness, and creativity of the SF soldier make him capable of jobs that few other soldiers could handle, in situations where traditional arms and… See more details below

Overview

"Shadow Warriors is the third in an extraordinary series of nonfiction books - a look deep into modern unconventional warfare, as seen through the eyes of one of America's outstanding commanders." "The training, resourcefulness, and creativity of the SF soldier make him capable of jobs that few other soldiers could handle, in situations where traditional arms and movement don't apply. Carl Stiner was only the second commander of SOCOM, the U.S. Special Operations Command, responsible for the readiness of all the special-operations forces of the Army, Navy, and Air Force, including the Green Berets, Navy SEALs, Rangers, Air Force Special Operations, PsyOps, Civil Affairs, and other special-mission units." "Together, Stiner and Clancy trace the transformation of the Special Forces from the small core of outsiders of the 1950s, through the cauldron of Vietnam, to the rebirth of the SF in the late 1980s and 1990s, and on into the new century as the bearer of the largest, most mixed, and most complex set of missions in the U.S. military. From Vietnam and Laos to Lebanon to Panama, to Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and Iraq, to the new wars of today, these are stories of counterterrorism, raids, hostage rescues, reconnaissance, counterinsurgency, and psychological operations - and also of building settlements, teaching civilians, cleaning up water supplies, and saving lives." The book is a front-row seat to a man, an institution, and a way of both war and peace - an instant classic of military history.

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Editorial Reviews

When he's not overseeing his Net Force series of cyberthrillers or putting out thousand-page-plus tomes of militaristic suspense, Tom Clancy co-writes a series of nonfiction books on different segments of the U.S. military. The latest is a conversational, nonacademic study of the history of the United States' Special Forces, from their roots in World War II to the present. The book's co-author, a former paratrooper and commander-in-chief of the U.S. Special Operations Command, provides a good deal of the firsthand experience that gives the writing a welcome feel of authenticity. Since Stiner is retired, he's free to spout off about Pentagon bureaucracy and key military figures, including Gen. Norman Schwarzkopf. This irreverence, not to mention some spectacularly engrossing depictions of dangerous missions in Panama and Iraq, helps spice up an occasionally sluggish agglomeration of anecdotes and acronyms.
—Chris Barsanti
Publishers Weekly
This is the third volume in Clancy's series presenting modern war from the perspective of its commanders. Here the focus is on special warfare: Rangers, SEALs, Delta Force, the Green Berets and other less familiar organizations. Stiner headed the newly created Special Operations Command during the Gulf War. His experiences and Clancy's investigations combine to describe how the perennial outsider troops became frontline insiders. Many of the book's anecdotes from the 1950s and '60s support an image of a special operations community not exactly at war with the army, but trying to establish parameters for what its advocates considered a new approach to war, incorporating military, political and social elements under military control. Following about 40 pages on Vietnam, the second half the book takes us through accounts of the pinpoint strikes on the hijacked cruise ship Achille Lauro, two operations in Panama and Desert Storm activities that included Scud missile takedowns. The book ends with a 10-page chapter on September 11 and its aftermath, and appendixes on Special Ops Command history and "Leadership." Readers looking for an up-to-the-minute account of the ways and means of the war in Afghanistan will not find it here, but the plethora of insider history and firsthand operation specifics from insertion to "exfiltration" up to the early '90s will please the historically minded. (Feb. 4) Forecast: The Clancy name and events of September 11 have combined to make this a BOMC main selection, but the Gulf War material will have trouble competing with live television reports and newspaper accounts of current systems and teams. Expect a short run as a bestseller on the strength of Clancy alone. Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
KLIATT
To quote from the review of the audiobook in KLIATT, September 2002: Clancy once again ventures out of the realm of fiction and into the domain of reality and looks at "unconventional war." The author and his collaborators examine the need for and the establishment of the U.S. Special Forces units. YAs who have an interest in the military, particularly those who may be considering it for a career, will find this book interesting and informative—this is not a Hollywood version of the Green Berets or Navy SEALs. After a discussion of international terrorist incidents that occurred during the 1970s and '80s, the authors examine the organization and development of America's Special Forces, and the resistance of the traditional military to "special units." The book covers a detailed description of Special Forces operations during the war in Vietnam and provides a detailed description of the Achille Lauro hijacking and its follow-up. The events of 9/11 and their aftermath have brought international terrorism sharply into focus and this book is certainly relevant to events today. KLIATT Codes: SA—Recommended for senior high school students, advanced students, and adults. 2002, Berkley, 548p. index., Boyd
Library Journal
The present war against terrorism has been quite a showcase for the United States's Special Operations Forces (SOF), which consists of the well-known Navy SEALS, Army Rangers and Green Berets, the supersecret Delta Force, and other similar units. Clancy presents some of their history, as well as incidents from the not-too-distant past, which demonstrates that what has happened in the past year is not entirely unknown to our armed forces. Narrator George DiCenzo offers a strong, confident, and deliberate performance. Recommended for purchase by public libraries.-Michael T. Fein, Central Virginia Community Coll., Lynchburg Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
The author of megaselling novels in the techno/gung-ho genre (The Bear and the Dragon, 2000, etc.) that he practically invented adds an untimely entry to his body of nonfiction dissections (Every Man a Tiger, 1999, etc.) of what makes our military so great: everything you wanted to know about Special Forces except for Afghanistan. Teamed this time with a retired former chief of US Special Operations Command, Clancy delves into the origins and evolution of the Special Forces concept. Presidents Kennedy and Reagan get special credit for a relevant grasp of realpolitik: the need for a new kind of force capable of Cold War dirty tricks, counterinsurgencies, and holding terrorists to account for their crimes anywhere in the world. Some action vignettes from SF roots in WWII and Vietnam rival Clancy fiction, but things get bogged down with military trivia as the author and General Stiner interweave narratives (liberally laced with the kind of DOD jargon that makes a ship a "naval platform" and an airplane an "aviation asset") on the Achille Lauro (hijacked cruise liner) incident, "taking down" Noriega's Panama, and other actions. The central theme is a somewhat predictable one of guys in the field taking heat, or worse, because Washington never quite gets it. For example, only after Vietnam, when the Pentagon finally allows that the standard US ground soldier is frighteningly inept at forging good relations with "friendlies," does that become a top SF training priority. Also well documented is the depth and breadth of opposition to any concept of elite units by mainstream military commanders who tend to see Special Ops planners as "princes of darkness" out to rob the "Big Army" of budget andresources. Obviously caught with the book already in the publishing pipeline when the 2001 War on Terrorism was declared, Clancy awkwardly tacks on a final chapter to cover repercussions of September 11 (but not including any military operations in Afghanistan), which adds nothing original either in his analysis of the Al Qaeda brand of terrorism or proposed countermeasures. Valor vs. red tape with the soul of democracy at stake.
From the Publisher
“Some action vignettes from [Special Forces] roots in WWII and Vietnam rival Clancy fiction.”—Kirkus Reviews

“The plethora of insider history and firsthand operation specifics…will please the historically minded.”—Publishers Weekly

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780736686198
Publisher:
Books on Tape, Inc.
Publication date:
03/01/2002
Series:
Commanders Series
Edition description:
Unabridged

Read an Excerpt

5 CDs, 6 hours

Tom Clancy returns to Jack Ryan’s early days, in an extraordinary novel of global political drama.

“Smart and likable, Jack Ryan has become one of the best-known
characters in contemporary American fiction.” –The Washington Post

L
ong before he was President or head of the CIA, before he fought terrorist attacks on the Super Bowl or the White House, even before a submarine named Red October made its perilous way across the Atlantic, Jack Ryan was an historian, teacher, and recent ex-Marine temporarily living in England while researching a book. A series of deadly encounters with an IRA splinter group had brought him to the attention of the CIA’s Deputy Director, Vice Admiral James Greer–as well as his counterpart with the British SIS, Sir Basil Charleston–and when Greer asked him if he wanted to come aboard as a freelance analyst, Jack was quick to accept. The opportunity was irresistible, and he was sure he could fit it in with the rest of his work.
And then Jack forgot all about the rest of his work, because one of his first assignments was to help debrief a high-level Soviet defector, and the defector told an amazing tale: Top Soviet officials, including Yuri Andropov, were planning to assassinate the Pope, John Paul II.
Could it be true? As the days and weeks go by, Ryan must battle, first to try to confirm the plot, and then to prevent it, but this is a brave new world, and nothing he has done up to now has prepared him for the lethal game of cat-and-mouse that is the Soviet Union versus the United States. In the end, it will be not just the Pope’s life but thestability of the Western world that is at stake. . . and it may already be too late for a novice CIA analyst to do anything about it.
“Clancy creates not only compelling characters but frighteningly topical situations and heart-stopping action,” wrote The Washington Post about The Bear and the Dragon. “Among the handful of superstars, Clancy still reigns, and he is not likely to be dethroned any time soon.” These words were never truer than about the remarkable pages of his breathtaking new novel. This is Clancy at his best–and there is none better.
TOM CLANCY lives in Maryland.

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What People are saying about this

From the Publisher
“Some action vignettes from [Special Forces] roots in WWII and Vietnam rival Clancy fiction.”—Kirkus Reviews
 
“The plethora of insider history and firsthand operation specifics…will please the historically minded.”—Publishers Weekly

 

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