January 5, 2014

Review: Lone Survivor: The Eyewitness Account of Operation Redwing and the Lost Heroes of SEAL Team 10

Lone Survivor: The Eyewitness Account of Operation Redwing and the Lost Heroes of SEAL Team 10
Lone Survivor: The Eyewitness Account of Operation Redwing and the Lost Heroes of SEAL Team 10 by Marcus Luttrell

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

When I was in 7th grade, I spent some time at a Navy recruiters' office. My brother was 18 at the time and my brother was getting information on becoming a Naval Officer. At the time my dream was to fly in the backseat of an F-14; not because of Top Gun, but because my dad and I had spent a day on an aircraft carrier (CVN-70 Carl Vinson) and we saw several planes take off. The F-14 was the loudest of the bunch. While at the recruiters' office, one of the men there asked if I wanted to join the Navy, and of course I said yes. When asked what I wanted to do, I said "either fly in an F-14 or become a SEAL." The recruiter looked at me and said, "being an F-14 pilot is easy, being a SEAL is almost impossible. If your mind isn't right, you won't make it through one day of training."

Lone Survivor showed me how difficult becoming a Navy SEAL really is. While I've seen several documentaries about the indoctrination process, Mr. Luttrell is so vivid with his explanation that I know I would've rung the bell and dropped out on the first day. Marcus spends almost half the book explaining the process of becoming a SEAL which I enjoyed. Understanding what it takes to become a SEAL helps explain the actions during this fateful mission. How can you really know why someone makes a decision if you don't know how they got to that point?

The firefight that the SEAL team gets in is so amazing and described so well that you'd never think something like this could happen. Four SEALS versus over a hundred Taliban where the Taliban has the higher ground. The courage those men showed was beyond amazing.

If you want to read about some real life heroes, you must read Lone Survivor.

My favorite quotes:

"We train for war and fight to win. I stand ready to bring the full spectrum of combat power to bear in order to achieve my mission and the goals established by my country. The execution of my duties will be swift and violent when required, yet guided by the very principles I serve to defend." "There is no other way to beat a terrorist. You must fight like him, or he will surely kill you." "Marcus, the body can take damn near anything. It's the mind that needs training. The question that guy was being asked involved mental strength. Can you handle such injustice? Can you cope with that kind of unfairness, that much of a setback? And still come back with your jaw set, still determined, swearing to God you will never quit? that's what we're looking for."

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