Baker & Taylor The commanding officer of an infantry battalion in Vietnam in 1969 recounts how he took over a demoralized unit of ordinary draftees and turned it into an elite fighting force, and describes its accomplishments.
Colonel David H. Hackworth, one of America's most decorated soldiers, lays bare his most daring and legendary tour of duty.
1966 With a full year of Vietnam combat and five months of in-country intense after-action analysis under his pistol belt, Hackworth pens the classic tactical handbook the Vietnam Primer with military historian Samuel Marshall. In a radical shift from the World War II-era tactics then employed in Vietnam, Hackworth stresses the necessity of using disciplined, small units of well-trained men to best fight the hit-and-run warfare of the elusive Viet Cong. "Out G'ing the G," he called his tactics.
1969 Hackworth's expertise lands him back in Vietnam. The Army's message is clear-put up, or shut up. Given the "hopeless," morale-drained 4/39th-an infantry battalion of poorly led draftees with one of the Army's worst casualty rates-Hackworth leads from up front and finds the best in every one of his grunts. Together, they take a page from the VC, write their own book, and become the meanest in the Mekong Delta-the Hardcore Recondos.
2002 With the U.S. again facing elusive insurgent foes-and the hit-and-run tactics of the international terror networks we're presently up against-the 4/39th Hardcore Battalion's successes provide hard-won lessons-learned that are more applicable now than ever.
A tour de force of frontline combat action, Steel My Soldiers' Hearts takes readers alongside sniper missions, into grunt ambush actions, above fields of fire with hard-hitting helicopter strikes, and inside the quagmire of command politics. Hackworth graduates the Mekong Delta brotherhood into the pantheon of our nation's most heroic warriors.