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Airborne [Paperback]

Tom Clancy
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Nov. 1 1997 Tom Clancy's Military Referenc (Book 5)
Offers a detailed, fact-filled examination of the Airborne Task Force, complete with exclusive photographs, illustrations, diagrams, and an extensive interview with the commander of the 18th Airborne Corps, General John Keen. Original."

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Product Description

About the Author

Tom Clancy is a household name. His ten novels, including Patriot Games, Hunt for Red October and Clear and Present Danger, have sold in their millions throughout the world, and been the basis of some of the biggest-name movies. The first four books in this Military Library series, Submarine, Armoured Warfare, Fighter Wing and Marine, were published by HarperCollins. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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First Sentence
It is hard to believe that even a man with the wisdom and foresight of Benjamin Franklin could have envisioned the idea of paratroopers and airborne warfare in the 18th century. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
Format:Paperback
Tom Clancy and John D. Gresham's Airborne: A Guided Tour of an Airborne Task Force is the fifth entry in Berkley's "Guided Tour" series of non-fiction books about U.S. military units. As one might expects, the book zeroes in on the elite paratroopers of the "All-American" 82nd Airborne Division, their "tools of the trade," training, history and roles and missions.
The 82nd Airborne is America's last true paratrooper division; its XVIII Airborne Corps partner, the 101st Air Assault Division ("The Screaming Eagles") traded in its parachutes for helicopters long ago. Along with the 101st, the 82nd Airborne is teamed with the 3rd Mechanized Infantry Division and the 2nd Armored Cavalry Regiment, giving the XVIII Airborne Corps both a powerful punch and flexibility.
Clancy and Gresham describe practically every weapon, tool, uniform and aircraft employed in modern airborne warfare today in a clear and concise fashion. The authors also discuss the proud history of the 82nd Airborne (and airborne warfare in general) from World War II to Operation Restore Democracy (the 1994 mission to remove the military junta in Haiti) and the various aspects of life for the modern-day paratrooper, particularly the arduous training regimen involved in getting young men and women to jump out of, as Clancy wryly observes, "perfectly good airplanes."
Airborne also includes an interview with the then-incoming commander of the XVIII Airborne Corps, Gen. John B. Keane and a Foreword by retired Gen. Gary Luck, who commanded the corps during the first Persian Gulf War in 1991.
As in all the books of the Guided Tour series, Clancy includes several short vignettes to illustrate what the 82nd Airborne's roles and missions are.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Airborne? All the way! Feb. 6 2002
Format:Paperback
Tom Clancy must be the world's number one fan of the USA Military.
And vice versa.
"Airborne" is another in the series of mutual admiration society books written by Tom beginning with Submarine, and progressing on through Fighter Wing, Marine, Armoured Cav and others.
Each one is an in depth look at the men, equipment, training, tactics and history of a segment of the US Armed Services. Tom doesn't give a dry list of statistics, a few cutaway diagrams and photos, no this is hands-on stuff, straight from the people who use the weapons, supplemented by Tom's observations on a guided tour of the facilities and attendance at a training exercise.
I'd give this a top rating, but for the graphics, which aren't up to the standard of earlier books. Many of the photographs, for instance, are literaly the size of a postage stamp.
But that's a minor niggle, and there are some excellent photos, and diagrams.
What comes across very strongly is the awesom esprit de corps of the Airborne. Far more than any other units, Airborne soldiers fight alone without the direct support of other arms, excepting maybe the airforce. But if an airborne force goes into action on the far side of the world, where friendly runways are few and far between, then they are very much on their own until reinforcements win through.
The unique tactics of the airborne units are highlighted. The "LGOP" mentality, where Little Groups Of Parachutists form up and fight through to the objective. The way that subunits are divided up amongst aircraft so that if one aircraft doesn't make it, it doesn't take out an entire platoon or company.
There's more, a lot more, and I particularly liked the historical chapters.
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3.0 out of 5 stars 82nd "Truckborne" June 15 2001
By "nick4"
Format:Paperback
After a few of my friends at the 101st Air Assault Division mentioned that they and the rest of the XVIII Airborne Corps in the Persian Gulf War started to call the 82nd Airborne the "82nd Truckborne", because they were at the rear of the Corps lagging behind in trucks, and saw zero combat. I was already very disppointed in the airborne concept since I heard General Schwarzkopf on a History Channel special describe the 82nd as being nothing more than a bump in the road at the outset of the crisis since they showed up to a gunfight with a slingshot and would have been overun by the Iraquis if they had wanted to do so.
After hearing my veteran friends of the 101st harras the 82nd so much, I was pleased to read this book and at least get a glimmer of hope that we weren't throwing away good money after bad by supporting this unit. Tom Clancy paints a good picture of the unit, it's motivated men and shows that there might be a role for them after all.
The one thing I thought was missing was the huge controversy going on right now with the US Army buying the wheeled LAVs to replace the aging Sheridans. But in Clancy's defense, I think the book was written before this had become a huge issue.
I have a deep respect for any member of the US armed forces, and Tom Clancy does a good job of describing their fighting spirit.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Very Interesting June 12 2001
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
My husband retired from the Army a couple of years ago and spent much of his career in the 82nd Airborne, so the book was very interesting to me. My husband thought it was a good PR and recruiting tool but it left out some of the problems he foresaw for the future of Airborne.
The problems he felt with the book were that it doesn't point out that the 82nd Airborne has been transformed in the last couple of years into more of a low-intensity light infantry unit similar to the disbanded 7th Light Infantry division. They are being used more and more like "leg" infantry than air assault troops. The problem with that is that they don't have the tanks and heavy weapons to be able to fight in the cities or to stop someone like the Iraquis that has alot of armor. He and many of the other veterans are afraid that if they were to be sent to fight in the Third World cities (like in Somalia) they would take alot of casualties because they don't have the right equipment and because the politicians are misusing them. He also doesn't think the Air Force is committing enough money to buiild more transport planes so that they can bring on heavier equipment (more armor please) and re-supplies by air and have to depend on the Navy (and the hated Marines) to do it.
But the book does capture the gung-ho spirit of the paratroopers.
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Most recent customer reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Clancy is kind of Right
I read his book on Marines and then the book on the Airborne. The problem that I have with Clancy is that he must hang out with the Public Relations officer where ever he goes. Read more
Published on Feb. 13 2004
2.0 out of 5 stars Nice try but lacking
Being a former 82nd Airborne Division Paratrooper I was very disapointed with the contents of Mr. CLanceys book. Read more
Published on March 9 2002
5.0 out of 5 stars My companion
You know, every now and then, something occurs that really gets the mind thinking. These generaly raise questions that range from little "Huh, I wonder why... Read more
Published on Sept. 2 2001 by Isaac T Smith
5.0 out of 5 stars Airborne tour a must read, far better than marine
Tom Clancy has done a far better job on his Airborne tour than his tour of a marine MAGTF which he just took press releases fed to him with the resultant flowery marinespeak used... Read more
Published on Aug. 10 2000 by Sam Damon Jr.
5.0 out of 5 stars A great job for someone who has not lived it.
I worked as a photojournalist in the public affairs office when this book was being researched and written. Read more
Published on Jan. 8 2000 by Michael A Miller
3.0 out of 5 stars Who really makes the airborne "airborne" ? The Riggers!
Read the book and nothing went into depth about the Parachute Riggers. Its not a pleasnt thought that that one would have if they realize that every parachute you pack your name... Read more
Published on Sept. 29 1999
4.0 out of 5 stars I enjoyed it.
This was the first book in the non-fiction series that I have read, and I expected a lot from Tom Clancy. For the biggest part he delivered. I really liked the equipment section. Read more
Published on Aug. 17 1999
2.0 out of 5 stars Can't Get the Facts Straight
I'll begin by saying that the average civilian with no military background could learn a lot about the 82nd from this book. Read more
Published on July 20 1999
4.0 out of 5 stars Well done if a little lacking in depth
I've always been fascinated by the advances in military technology and strategy. As a veteran of the D-Day drops in Normandy I was particularly interested in Mr. Read more
Published on June 21 1999
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