Saturday 9 April 2011

Book - Black Hawk Down

This is a brilliant account of the longest sustained firefight involving American troops since the Vietnam War. On October 3, 1993, about a hundred U.S. soldiers were dropped by helicopter into a teeming market in the heart of Mogadishu, Somalia, to abduct two top lieutenants of a Somali warlord. The action was supposed to take an hour. Instead, they spent a long and terrible night fighting thousands of armed Somalis. By morning, eighteen Americans were dead, and more than seventy badly injured. Mark Bowden's gripping narrative is one of the most exciting accounts of modern war ever written-a riveting story that captures the heroism, courage, and brutality of battle. 

When I saw the movie for the first time, I was utterly amazed. The movie was very graphic and very well done, one of my top 5 war movies ever. What I found astounding was how well-armed the everyday citizen was in the city. Seemed like everyone had the Russian made AK47 or a rocket launcher of some sort. The book is equally as gripping and fast paced. 

As the author can make the story as long as he wants, compared to time restraints of a movie, Mark Bowden does a great job of telling the background stories of the soldiers involved. He even tells the stories and background of the people who lived in the city of Mogadishu and why they hated the Americans so much. I also like how he stayed with the stories of the soldiers and their families after the conflict was over. A great book and a thrilling read!

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