The Bremer Detail: Protecting the Most Threatened Man in the World

Open Road Media
24
Free sample

An action-packed memoir by a high-level private security contractor who worked in Iraq just after the fall of Saddam Hussein.

In May 2003 President George W. Bush appointed Paul Bremer as presidential envoy to Iraq. Bremer banned the Ba’ath party and dismantled the Iraqi army, which made him the prime target for dozens of insurgent and terrorist groups. Assigned to protect him during his grueling sixteen-hour days were Blackwater security expert Frank Gallagher and a team of former Marines, SEALs, and other defense professionals. When they arrived, Baghdad was set to explode. As the insurgency gathered strength Bremer and the men who guarded him faced death daily. They were not in the military, but Gallagher and his team were on the front lines of the Iraq War. This fascinating memoir takes the reader deep behind the scenes of a highly dangerous profession.
This ebook includes ten pages of action photos from the author’s time in Baghdad.
 
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About the author

Frank Gallagher has more than twenty-five years of international experience providing personal protection, intelligence gathering, counter-terrorism operations, and security training in both the private security sector and the US Marine Corps. He served as director of security for former US Secretary of State Dr. Henry A. Kissinger, has created training programs for personnel traveling to high-threat areas, and is currently the executive vice president of Amyntor Group, LLC, an international security services and consulting firm serving government, corporate, and VIP clients. 

John M. Del Vecchio is the bestselling author of The 13th Valley and other novels on the war in Southeast Asia and the veteran homecoming experience. He was a combat correspondent for the 101st Airborne Division in Vietnam and received a Bronze Star for heroism in ground combat. 
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4.5
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Additional Information

Publisher
Open Road Media
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Published on
Sep 30, 2014
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Pages
298
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ISBN
9781497643970
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Language
English
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Genres
Biography & Autobiography / Military
History / Military / Iraq War (2003-2011)
History / Military / Special Forces
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Available on Android devices
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Nine men. 2,000 enemies. No back-up. No air support. No rescue. No chance...

First in - the official motto of one of the British Army's smallest and most secretive units, 16 Air Assault Brigade's Pathfinder Platoon. Unofficially, they are the bastard son of the SAS. And like their counterparts in Hereford, the job of the Pathfinders is to operate unseen and undetected deep behind enemy lines.

When British forces deployed to Iraq in 2003, Captain David Blakeley was given command of a reconnaissance mission of such critical importance that it could change the course of the war. It's the story of nine men, operating alone and unsupported, fifty miles ahead of a US Recon Marine advance and head straight into a hornets nest, teeming with thousands of heavily-armed enemy forces. This is the first account of that extraordinary mission - abandoned by coalition command, left with no option but to fight their way out of the enemy's backyard.

And it provides a gripping insight into the Pathfinders themselves, a shadowy unit, just forty-five men strong, that plies its trade from the skies. Trained to parachute in to enemy territory far beyond the forward edge of battle - freefalling from high altitude breathing bottled oxygen and employing the latest skydiving technology - the PF are unique.

Because of new rules introduced since the publication of Bravo Two Zero, there have been no first-hand accounts of British Special Forces waging modern-day warfare for nearly a decade. And no member of the Pathfinders has ever told their story before. Until now. Pathfinder is the only first-hand account of a UKSF mission to emerge for nearly a generation. And it could be the last.

In the tradition of Michael Herr’s Dispatches and works by such masters of the memoir as Mary Karr and Tobias Wolff, a powerful account of war and homecoming.

Brian Castner served three tours of duty in the Middle East, two of them as the commander of an Explosive Ordnance Disposal unit in Iraq. Days and nights he and his team—his brothers—would venture forth in heavily armed convoys from their Forward Operating Base to engage in the nerve-racking yet strangely exhilarating work of either disarming the deadly improvised explosive devices that had been discovered, or picking up the pieces when the alert came too late. They relied on an army of remote-controlled cameras and robots, but if that technology failed, a technician would have to don the eighty-pound Kevlar suit, take the Long Walk up to the bomb, and disarm it by hand. This lethal game of cat and mouse was, and continues to be, the real war within America’s wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
But The Long Walk is not just about battle itself. It is also an unflinching portrayal of the toll war exacts on the men and women who are fighting it. When Castner returned home to his wife and family, he began a struggle with a no less insidious foe, an unshakable feeling of fear and confusion and survivor’s guilt that he terms The Crazy. His thrilling, heartbreaking, stunningly honest book immerses the reader in two harrowing and simultaneous realities: the terror and excitement and camaraderie of combat, and the lonely battle against the enemy within—the haunting memories that will not fade, the survival instincts that will not switch off. After enduring what he has endured, can there ever again be such a thing as “normal”? The Long Walk will hook you from the very first sentence, and it will stay with you long after its final gripping page has been turned.
No company in our time has been as mysterious or as controversial as Blackwater. Founded by former Navy SEAL Erik Prince in 1997, it recruited special forces veterans and others with the skills and courage to take on the riskiest security jobs in the world. As its reputation grew, government demand for its services escalated, and Blackwater's men eventually completed nearly one hundred thousand missions in Iraq and Afghanistan. Both the Bush and Obama administrations found the company indispensible. It sounds like a classic startup success story, except for one problem: Blackwater has been demonized around the world. From uninformed news coverage to grossly distorted fictional portrayals, Blackwater employees have been smeared as mercenaries, profiteers, jackbooted thugs, and worse. Because of the secrecy requirements of Blackwater's contracts with the Pentagon, the State Department, and the CIA, Prince was unable to speak out when his company's opponents spread false information. But now he's able to tell the full and often shocking story of Blackwater's rise and fall. In Civilian Warriors, Prince pulls no punches and spares no details. He explains his original goal of building an elite center for military and law enforcement training. He recounts how the company shifted gears after 9/11. He honors our troops while challenging the Pentagon's top leadership. And he reveals why highly efficient private military contractors have been essential to running our armed forces, since long before Blackwater came along. Above all, Prince debunks myths about Blackwater that spread while he was forced to remain silent-myths that tarnished the memory of men who gave their lives for their country but never got the recognition they deserved.

He reveals new information about some of the biggest controversies of the War on Terror, including:

• The true story of the Nisour Square massacre in Baghdad.
• The actual details of Blackwater's so-called impunity in Iraq.
• The events leading up to the televised deaths of Blackwater contractors in Fallujah.

Prince doesn't pretend to be perfect, and he doesn't hide the sometimes painful details of his private life. But he has done a great public service by setting the record straight. His book reads like a thriller but is too improbable to be fiction.



"At a time
when we must adapt to the changing character of conflict, this is a serious
book on a serious issue that can give us the edge we need.” 





—General James Mattis, USMC, Ret. 





"Left of Bang offers a crisp lesson in survival in which Van Horne and Riley
affirm a compelling truth: It's better to detect sinister intentions early
than respond to violent actions late. Left of Bang helps readers avoid the bang."  





—Gavin de Becker, bestselling author of The Gift of Fear 





"Rare is the book that is
immediately practical and interesting. Left of Bang accomplishes this from start to finish. There is something
here for everyone in the people business and we are all in the people
business."  





—Joe Navarro, bestselling author of What Every BODY is Saying. 





"Left of Bang is a highly important and innovative book that offers a
substantial contribution to answering the challenge of Fourth Generation war
(4GW)."  





—William S. Lind, author of Maneuver Warfare Handbook 





"Like Sun Tzu's The
Art of War, Left of
Bang isn't just for the military. It's a must read
for anyone who has ever had a gut feeling that something's not quite
right...be it walking down the street, sitting in a corporate boardroom, or
even entering an empty home."  





--Steven Pressfield, bestselling author
of The Lion's Gate, The Warrior Ethos and Gates of Fire





“An amazing book! Applying the lessons
learned during the longest war in American history, and building on seminal
works like The Gift of Fear and On Combat, this book provides a
framework of knowledge that will bring military, law enforcement, and
individual citizens to new levels of survival mindset and performance in
life-and-death situations. Left of Bang is an instant classic.”  





--Lt. Colonel Dave Grossman, U.S. Army
Ret., author of On Combat and On Killing 











-- You walk into a restaurant and get an
immediate sense that you should leave. 





-- You are about to step onto an elevator
with a stranger and something stops you.  





-- You interview a potential new employee
who has the resume to do the job, but something tells you not to offer a
position. 





These scenarios all represent LEFT OF
BANG, the moments before something bad happens. But how many times have you
talked yourself out of leaving the restaurant, getting off the elevator, or
getting over your silly “gut” feeling about someone? Is there a way to not
just listen to your inner protector more, but to actually increase your
sensitivity to threats before they happen?  





Legendary Marine General James Mattis
asked the same question and issued a directive to operationalize the Marine
Corps’ Combat Hunter program. A comprehensive and no-nonsense approach to
heightening each and every one of our gifts of fear, LEFT OF BANG is the
result.
 WARNING! This book contains images some readers may find disturbing!


Trunk Monkeys: The Life of a Contract Soldier in Iraq tells the true story of operators from a private military contractor working in Iraq shortly after the Gulf War. From the perspective of grizzled veteran Lewis Steiner who had left the British Army to join the gold rush in the living hell that was war-torn Iraq, Steiner grew disillusioned about the declining situation in the country as he believed that the joint US and UK invasion had made things far worse.

This fascinating and often extremely violent book encompasses the highs and lows of operating throughout the country from Basra in the south up to Mosul in the north. Steiner recounts of friends lost due to negligence and poor planning to the realities of conducting a private war surrounded by civilians who might be the enemy. Ultimately injured in an incident that left two dead, Steiner decides to soldier on due to a misguided sense of duty. Armed with his belt-fed SAW machine gun, Steiner accepted a contract located near Tikrit. The missions rapidly become a death sentence to many of the contract soldiers and dogs of war. In some cases, these missions were pointless, costing men, vehicles and the sanity of brothers in arms. Steiner was in the thick of it from dodging enemy ambushes to taking out a suicide bomber and narrowly escaping death in ‘Sniper Alley’ collecting cranberry sauce for the US forces on Thanksgiving Day. With the pedal to the metal, his Humvee attracted the unwelcome attention of insurgents who tried to blow him up with RPGs.

Forget the fictionalised works of Andy McNab, Tom Clancy and Chris Ryan: this is the real deal. This is a firsthand account of the men who decide to pay the ultimate price, but be warned, this tells the real story that the Government does not want you to know.

Illustrations: 38 colour photographs

Robert Young Pelton first became aware of the phenomenon of hired guns in the War on Terror when he met a covert team of contractors on the Afghanistan/Pakistan border in the fall of 2003. Pelton soon embarked on a globe-spanning odyssey to penetrate and understand this shadowy world, ultimately delivering stunning insights into the way private soldiers are used.

Enter a blood-soaked world of South African mercenaries and tribal fighters backed by ruthless financiers. Drop into Baghdad’s Green Zone, strap on body armor, and take a daily high-speed ride with a doomed crew of security contractors who dodge car bombs and snipers just to get their charges to the airport. Share a drink in a chic hotel bar with wealthy owners of private armies who debate the best way to stay alive in war zones.

Licensed to Kill spans four continents and three years, taking us inside the CIA’s dirty wars; the brutal contractor murders in Fallujah and the Alamo-like sieges in Najaf and Al Kut; the Deep South contractor training camps where ex–Special Operations soldiers and even small town cops learn the ropes; the contractor conventions where macho attendees swap bullet-punctuated tales and discuss upcoming gigs; and the grim Central African prison where contractors turned failed mercenaries pay a steep price.

The United States has encouraged the use of the private sector in all facets of the War on Terror, placing contractors outside the bounds of functional legal constraints. With the shocking clarity that can come only from firsthand observation, Licensed to Kill painstakingly deconstructs the most controversial events and introduces the pivotal players. Most disturbingly, it shows that there are indeed thousands of contractors—with hundreds more being produced every month—who’ve been given a license to kill, their services available to the highest bidder.
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