We Were Soldiers Once...and Young: Ia Drang - The Battle That Changed the War in Vietnam Hardcover – Oct 20 1992
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In the first significant engagement between American troops and the Viet Cong, 450 U.S. soldiers found themselves surrounded and outnumbered by their enemy. This book tells the story of how they battled between October 23 and November 26, 1965. Its prose is gritty, not artful, delivering a powerful punch of here-and-now descriptions that could only have been written by people actually on the scene. In fact, they were: Harold Moore commanded the men of the 1st Battalion, 7th Cavalry, who did most of the fighting, and Joseph Galloway was the only reporter present throughout the battle's 34 harrowing days. We Were Soldiers Once... combines their memories with more than 100 in-depth interviews with survivors on both sides. The Battle of Ia Drang also highlights a technological advance that would play an enormous role in the rest of the war: this was perhaps the first place where helicopter-based, air-mobile operations demonstrated their combat potential. At bottom, however, this is a tale of heroes and heroism, some acts writ large, others probably forgotten but for this telling. It was a bestseller when first published, and remains one of the better books available on combat during the Vietnam War. --John J. Miller --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
From Publishers Weekly
On Nov. 14, 1965, the 1st Battalion of the 7th Cavalry, commanded by Lt. Col. Moore and accompanied by UPI reporter Galloway, helicoptered into Vietnam's remote Ia Drang Valley and found itself surrounded by a numerically superior force of North Vietnamese regulars. Moore and Galloway here offer a detailed account, based on interviews with participants and on their own recollections, of what happened during the four-day battle. Much more than a conventional battle study, the book is a frank record of the emotional reactions of the GIs to the terror and horror of this violent and bloody encounter. Both sides claimed victory, the U.S. calling it a validation of the newly developed doctrine of airmobile warfare. Supplemented with maps, the memoir is a vivid re-creation of the first major ground battle of the Vietnam War. Photos.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Top Customer Reviews
General Moore and correspondent Galloway have made an invaluable contribution to the truth by publishing this most unusual joint memoir - how often do soldiers and journalists team up? Together they have produced one of the classic battle books of all times. Though written in a self-deprecating manner it is impossible to read this excellent book and not be completely in awe of the leadership abilities and dedication of then Lieutenant Colonel Hal Moore.
Moore took his new battalion - then an experimental airmobile unit - into what turned out to be an incredibly one-sided battle against seasoned, tough North Vietnamese regular forces. The Americans won that battle due in part to their supporting air and artillery but mostly on the shoulders of the soldiers and their leaders, from Colonel Moore all the way down to the squad and fire teams.
We Were Soldiers goes a long way to restoring the rightful pride that Americans ought to feel about our soldiers in Vietnam. This is a book that belongs on every American's shelf and is one that you will want to go back to and contemplate from time to time. It is an absolute must read.
In this book you will see both the competence and courage of the ordinary grunt, and the incompetence and mistakes of their commanders. This was not a strategic battle planned out in the corridors of the Pentagon, but, like the Battle of Gettysburg, it just happened. Thus, we have an unfolding of an unplanned battle that changed the course of the war.
Moore refuses to vilify the enemy. Like any good solider, he has respect for the men who opposed him. They are portrayed as men of courage, insight and dedication. If you only had opportunity to read one chapter, read chapter 20: Death in the Tall Grass. It tells of the story members of the 2nd Battalion surrounded in a field of grass, the terror of that fight is unmatched.
Most recent customer reviews
I enjoyed this book, but it did seem to drag a little at times which is why I gave it 4 stars instead of 5.Published on Aug. 26 2013 by Mark C. Boyle
If ya wanta spend a few hours on it I'd advise the tome "How Great Generals Win" from a dude who taught at West Point. Read morePublished on Oct. 30 2009 by Jake The Hired Hand
My dad served in Vietnam. I've been in Iraq. This book tells it like it was in Vietnam and, in many ways, how it still is today. Read morePublished on June 11 2007 by Everett Black
I saw the movie & thought I would give the book a whirl. This book is extremely well written & frighteningly real. Read morePublished on Feb. 9 2005 by Blade-57
This book, about one of the first battles of the Vietnam War using large-scale deployment of US forces, is impossible to put down. Read morePublished on July 5 2004 by James F. Anderson III
Simply put, it was one of the most amazing, most moving books I have ever read in my entire life. It helps that the two writers were actually there at the battle and so provide a... Read morePublished on June 8 2004 by Kellen
I own 20-30 books written about the Veitnam War. This is without a doubt one of best I have ever had the pleasure of reading. Read morePublished on March 18 2004 by Ken Laine
Well I have to say this book definately was an accurate account
of what occured in Vietnam. The brutality and anguish the soldiers went through was accurately told but was dry... Read more
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