It was the tumultuous year 1968, and Robert Tonsetic was Rifle Company commander of the 4th Battalion, 12th Infantry in Vietnam. He took over a group of grunts demoralized by defeat but determined to get even. Through the legendary Tet and May Offensives, he led, trained, and risked his life with these brave men, and this is the thrilling, brutal, and honest story of his tour of duty. Tonsetic tells of leading a seriously undermanned ready-reaction force into a fierce, three-day battle with a ruthless enemy battalion; conducting surreal night airmobile assaults and treks through fetid, pitch-black jungles; and relieving combat stress by fishing with hand grenades and taking secret joyrides in Hueys.
During that fateful year, as unrest erupted at home and politicians groped for a way out of the war, Tonsetic and his men did their job as soldiers and earned the title “Warriors.”
From the Paperback edition.
During this assignment, Morgan acquires a keen sense of responsibility to his unit, which calls itself “Charlie Hunter”, and to the men who serve in it. He develops a special bond with many of his men, and one in particular—a young Mexican who is nicknamed Mouse. The story takes this unit on many dangerous missions and recounts the bravery and compassion of the soldier called Mouse. In the course of operations, the unit comes into contact with a mysterious Vietnamese woman, who eventually brings the commander to Saigon. That visit draws the captain into the realm of espionage and subterfuge and culminates with him on stand-by to lead a mission to rescue the Vietnamese woman. While leading his men on combat missions, Captain Morgan becomes increasingly disillusioned with the war and finds it more and more difficult to justify America’s presence in Vietnam to his subordinates; yet, he must continue to set the example and project the image of the “stalwart commander.”
He argues that the United States government, the president, and his key advisers in particular engaged in a major pattern of deception in how the United States committed its military force in Vietnam. He then argues that a significant sector of the government was deceived as well. The first half of the book traces and analyzes the pattern of deception from 1964 through July 1965. The second half shows how the military and political decisions to escalate influenced-and were influenced by-the economic advice and policies being given the President. This in-depth analysis will be of particular concern to scholars, students, and researchers involved with U.S. foreign and military policy, the Vietnam War, and Presidential war powers.