✶ [BOOKS] ✪ SOG: The Secret Wars of America's Commandos in Vietnam By John L. Plaster ❀ – Peakpopa.info
For fans of the Vietnam War literature, there s usually a trade off between the quality of prose and perspective e.g Herr, Caputo, Sheehan and the amount of true life tales being told A war reporter accompanying troops in the field sees much, but nothing compared to what Plaster has assembled from his interviews with US Special Forces veterans So what SOG may lack in helicopter insights, it than makes up for in edge of your seat excitement There are at least a half dozen stories of bravery under fire that Hollywood would dismiss as too outlandish for a fictional treatment even in today s world of Ethan Hunt blowing up the Kremlin and Messrs Stratham, Johnson and Craig blowing up the rest of the world movie by movie.The other thing I liked about the book is that it explained the reality of what was going on with the Ho Chi Minh trail through Laos and Cambodia officially ineligible for full scale military invasion at least until 1970 Only Green Berets and their Hmong companions were sanctioned to disrupt supply lines, and even then on an unsupported an unattributable basis Forty years after the end of the war, the reader still shakes his head and wonders why these brave men risked and sacrificed their lives when the military and political leaders they were supporting wouldn t reciprocate for fear of bad publicity Anyone who enjoyed Black Hawk Down , Bravo Two Zero or Lone Survivor will feast on SOG. This book covers the fighting done by Special Operations Groups SOG during the Vietnam War These groups secretly worked within Laos and Cambodia and sought to disrupt the Ho Chi Minh Trail that brought North Vietnamese Army supplies to South Vietnam I knew nothing of SOG before reading this book I read it because a client of mine was a part of this group and said this was the best description of the type of fighting he did during the war It was a fascinating look at special operations, psychological warfare, and courage. Major John L Plaster, A Three Tour Veteran Of Vietnam Tells The Story Of The Most Highly Classified United States Covert Operatives To Serve In The War The Studies And Observations Group, Code Named SOG Comprised Of Volunteers From Such Elite Military Units As The Army S Green Berets, The USAF Air Commandos, And Navy SEALs, SOG Agents Answered Directly To The Pentagon S Joint Chiefs, With Some Missions Requiring Approval From The White House Now For The First Time, The Dangerous Assignments Of This Top Secret Unit Can At Last Be Revealed This is the benchmark which all SOF special operations forces should be measured, Major Plaster brings you into the mind of an elite warrior Deep behind enemy lines with any CAS close air support almost an hour away at most times, and the prospect ofa QRF quick reaction force to pull their balls off the chopping block, these small 5 to 8 man teams crept through the NVA s home turf collecting intel, destroying critical supply lines and even snatching a live prisoner surrounded by hundreds of enemy Rambo is a pussy compared to any SOG vet.As an American Sof history buff, it s refreshing to see this doesn t make mistakes some books by veterans have made they ll fail to cover the details of the experience, like the military designation for a fragmentation grenade, the tactics used, and the other finer particulars thatgive you the sense of authenticity, of being there with them as they re being pursued by100 enemy through a jungle with only 4 or 5 of your brothers.The parts where the ReconTeam s are surrounded by dozens and hundreds of Charlie, armed with AA guns, RPG s and belt fed MG S versus the small arms these young men had is heart wrenching Remember, they had to carry everything in with them Their CAR 15 or M 16 rifles1 20 to 30 20 round mags, food, water, heavy radios with spotty reception, down to extra socks and medical kits all were in their rucks and on their person for up to 10 days at a clip Then to be hunkered down behind a small log with your teammates at your side mustbe very sobering and lonely.with all of the technology our sofguys can use to callin cas such as GPS, drones, and IRstrobes and lasers, it is truly amazing what they did with maps, a compass and their own eyes to call in500 1b bombs and napalm within50 meters of their own pos and sadly on top of their pos when their perimeter was broken.Aside from the incredibly written action where the reader finds himself in the jungle, smelling the rotting vegetation and feeling the weight ofthe CAR 17 s metal in your arms, he also makes you feel the loss of comrades and the loneliness and isolation from the high intensity of their everyday lives Plaster explains the feeling of being ayoung 20 something with the responsibility and power over his men s, and the enemies, lives and how that makes the trivial existence of normal life feel pointless at times You can t help but question your own life whenyou close the book. I thought there was too many operative s names to keep track of Their stories were incredible This was a fascinating look at a group of incredible men The stories are almost unbelievable and the things these few men accomplished are just crazy Well worth the read if you enjoy military SF history Immaculate detail on these SOG warriors as only Plaster could tell. Great read Action packed Unbelievable what they were up against and what they able to do Their actions during firefights amazing. Writing about the classified and the denied is always hard Plaster does his best to produce a systemic account of SOG, the elite crossboarder recon force in the Vietnam War, but at the end of the day, he is a soldier, not a historian When this book sticks to what Plaster knows, his own war stories and those of his friends, it is very good When it moves to a different subject, the politics of the war or the broader military impact of SOG, it loses touch SOG was composed of courageous men and skilled fighters, and we should be honored that Plaster and his comrades chose to share their stories with us While this is a good secondary source for the Vietnam War buff, it s not quite literary or insightful enough to recommend to a broader audience. Modern day warriors stories and lives that must be heard Never Forget.