Although frequently overlooked between the American Revolution and the Civil War, the War of 1812 tested a rising generation of American leaders; unified the United States with a renewed sense of national purpose; and set the stage for westward expansion from Mackinac Island to the Gulf of Mexico. USS Constitution, "Old Ironsides," proved the mettle of the fledgling American navy; Oliver Hazard Perry hoisted a flag boasting, "Don't Give Up the Ship"; and Andrew Jackson's ragged force stood behind it's cotton bales at New Orleans and bested the pride of British regulars. Here are the stories of commanding generals such as America's double-dealing James Wilkinson, Great Britain's gallant Sir Isaac Brock, Canada's heroine farm wife Laura Secord, and country doctor William Beanes, whose capture set the stage for Francis Scott Key to write "The Star-Spangled Banner." During the War of 1812, the United States cast off its cloak of colonial adolescence and -- with both humiliating and glorious moments -- found the fire that was to forge a nation.
This P.S. edition features an extra 16 pages of insights into the book, including author interviews, recommended reading, and more.
The "first" Afghan War, a CIA war in response to 9/11, was directed by the CIA Station Chief in Islamabad. It put Hamid Karzai in power in 88 days. "If you want an insider's account of the first American-Afghan War, you can't do better than this...Important reading to understand where we are today" (Library Journal).From his preparation of the original, post-9/11 war plan, approved by President Bush, through to "final" fleeting victory, Robert Grenier relates the tale of the "southern campaign," which drove al-Qa'ida and the Taliban from Kandahar, its capital, in an astonishing eighty-eight days. "With his ringside seat as the senior agency official stationed closest to Afghanistan, Grenier is able to describe meeting by meeting, sometimes phone call after phone call, how events unfolded" (The New York Times). In his gripping account, we meet: General Tommy Franks, who bridles at CIA control of "his" war; General "Jafar Amin," a gruff Pakistani intelligence officer who saves Grenier from committing career suicide; Maleeha Lodhi, Pakistan's brilliant ambassador to the US, who tries to warn her government of the al-Qa'ida threat; and Hamid Karzai, the puzzling anti-Taliban insurgent, a man with elements of greatness, petulance, and moods. With suspense and insight, Grenier details his very personal struggles and triumphs. 88 Days to Kandahar is "an action-packed tale, rich in implication, of the post-9/11 race to unseat the Taliban and rout al-Qaida in Afghanistan" (Kirkus Reviews).
On December 18, 1972, more than one hundred U.S. B-52 bombers flew over North Vietnam to initiate Operation Linebacker II. During the next eleven days, sixteen of these planes were shot down and another four suffered heavy damage. These losses soon proved so devastating that Strategic Air Command was ordered to halt the bombing. The U.S. Air Force's poor performance in this and other operations during Vietnam was partly due to the fact that they had trained their pilots according to methods devised during World War II and the Korean War, when strategic bombers attacking targets were expected to take heavy losses. Warfare had changed by the 1960s, but the USAF had not adapted. Between 1972 and 1991, however, the Air Force dramatically changed its doctrines and began to overhaul the way it trained pilots through the introduction of a groundbreaking new training program called "Red Flag."
In The Air Force Way of War, Brian D. Laslie examines the revolution in pilot instruction that Red Flag brought about after Vietnam. The program's new instruction methods were dubbed "realistic" because they prepared pilots for real-life situations better than the simple cockpit simulations of the past, and students gained proficiency on primary and secondary missions instead of superficially training for numerous possible scenarios. In addition to discussing the program's methods, Laslie analyzes the way its graduates actually functioned in combat during the 1980s and '90s in places such as Grenada, Panama, Libya, and Iraq. Military historians have traditionally emphasized the primacy of technological developments during this period and have overlooked the vital importance of advances in training, but Laslie's unprecedented study of Red Flag addresses this oversight through its examination of the seminal program.
"The majority of the stories of the Alamo fight have been partly legendary, partly hearsay and at best fragmentary. It has been left to John Myers Myers to present an exhaustively researched book which reveals the chronicle of the siege of the Alamo in an entirely different light. . . . Myers' story will stand as the best that has yet been written on the Alamo. . . . It's a classic."-Boston Post "Here is a historian with the vitality and drive to match his subject. A reporter of the first rank, he can clothe the dry bones of history with the living stuff of which today's news is made."-Chicago Tribune John Myers Myers authored sixteen books, including Doc Holliday and Tombstone's Early Years, also available as Bison Books.
In one of very few balanced accounts of Texas's epic struggle for independence from Mexico, Albert Nofi provides a splendid chronicle of the events and personalities of the war. He includes readable and accessible maps of military movements and a strategic and tactical analysis of each battle, addressing the extraordinary number of myths that the Alamo has engendered and exposing the truth about a conflict that has taken on legendary proportions.
In this gripping chronicle of America's struggle for independence, award-winning historian John Ferling transports readers to the grim realities of that war, capturing an eight-year conflict filled with heroism, suffering, cowardice, betrayal, and fierce dedication. As Ferling demonstrates, it was a war that America came much closer to losing than is now usually remembered. General George Washington put it best when he said that the American victory was "little short of a standing miracle."Almost a Miracle offers an illuminating portrait of America's triumph, offering vivid descriptions of all the major engagements, from the first shots fired on Lexington Green to the surrender of General Cornwallis at Yorktown, revealing how these battles often hinged on intangibles such as leadership under fire, heroism, good fortune, blunders, tenacity, and surprise. Ferling paints sharp-eyed portraits of the key figures in the war, including General Washington and other American officers and civilian leaders. Some do not always measure up to their iconic reputations, including Washington himself. The book also examines the many faceless men who soldiered, often for years on end, braving untold dangers and enduring abounding miseries. The author explains why they served and sacrificed, and sees them as the forgotten heroes who won American independence.
General Non-Fiction, 2014 Next Generation Indie Book Awards
The incredible story of denial, deceit, and deception that ultimately cost Navy pilot Captain Michael Scott Speicher his life is exposed in this military tell-all. Asserting that years of information has been intentionally kept from an American public, the book reveals that, contrary to reports, Speicher survived after he ejected from his stricken F/A-18 Hornet on the first night of the Persian Gulf War. Protected by a Bedouin tribal group, he evaded Saddam's capture for nearly four years. In that time he was repeatedly promised by an American intelligence asset that a deal for his repatriation would be worked out but it never was. Speicher was left behind. After Saddam Hussein captured him, Speicher spent the next eight years in a secret Baghdad prison and being moved around in secret to avoid an American task force looking for him, and before he was killed after the United States invaded Iraq in March 2003. Author Amy Waters Yarsinske, a former naval intelligence officer and a veteran investigator and author, presents her fascinating case after years of research.
How could a nation of eight million fail to subdue a struggling British colony of 300,000? In this remarkable account of the war's first year, Pierre Burton transforms history into an engrossing narrative that reads like a fast-paced novel. Drawing on memoirs, diaries, and official dispatches, the author gets inside the characters who fought the war--the common soldiers, the generals, the bureaucrats and the profiteers, the traitors, and the loyalists. This is a gripping account of a fascinatingly complex war that shaped the boundaries of America as we know them today.