The Chosen Few: A Company of Paratroopers and Its Heroic Struggle to Survive in the Mountains of Afghanistan

The Chosen Few: A Company of Paratroopers and Its Heroic Struggle to Survive in the Mountains of Afghanistan

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Overview

The Chosen Few: A Company of Paratroopers and Its Heroic Struggle to Survive in the Mountains of Afghanistan by Gregg Zoroya


The never-before-told story of one of the most decorated units in the war in Afghanistan and its fifteen-month ordeal that culminated in the 2008 Battle of Wanat, the war's deadliest

A single company of US paratroopers--calling themselves the "Chosen Few"--arrived in eastern Afghanistan in late 2007 hoping to win the hearts and minds of the remote mountain people and extend the Afghan government's reach into this wilderness. Instead, they spent the next fifteen months in a desperate struggle, living under almost continuous attack, forced into a slow and grinding withdrawal, and always outnumbered by Taliban fighters descending on them from all sides.

Month after month, rocket-propelled grenades, rockets, and machine-gun fire poured down on the isolated and exposed paratroopers as America's focus and military resources shifted to Iraq. Just weeks before the paratroopers were to go home, they faced their last--and toughest--fight. Near the village of Wanat in Nuristan province, an estimated three hundred enemy fighters surrounded about fifty of the Chosen Few and others defending a partially finished combat base. Nine died and more than two dozen were wounded that day in July 2008, making it arguably the bloodiest battle of the war in Afghanistan.

The Chosen Few would return home tempered by war. Two among them would receive the Medal of Honor. All of them would be forever changed.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780306824838
Publisher: Da Capo Press
Publication date: 02/14/2017
Pages: 400
Sales rank: 469,896
Product dimensions: 6.30(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

Gregg Zoroya is an award-winning journalist at USA Today, where he has written about the impact of war on troops and issues related to the care of veterans. He has traveled nearly twenty times into war zones in the Middle East and South Asia and has recently joined the editorial board for USA Today. Zoroya lives near Washington, DC.

Table of Contents

List of Maps ix

Foreword Admiral William H. McRaven(US Navy, Ret.) xi

Prologue: Alone and Under Attack 1

1 Falling from the Skies 9

2 Eager for War 29

3 Good Morning, Afghanistan 43

4 Enemy Inside the Wire 70

5 Phillips Fights Back 87

6 Giving Ground 109

7 Ambush -My Friends Are My Enemies 131

8 A Radio Man Takes Charge 158

9 "It Might Be Dangerous" 194

10 Under Siege 221

11 Combat Outpost Kahler 255

12 "Pray to Jesus" 299

13 Coming Home 333

Sources 351

Acknowledgments 355

Index 357

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