- Explore more great deals on thousands of titles in our Deals in Books store.
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your email address or mobile phone number.
American Soldier Paperback – Bargain Price, April 26, 2005
|New from||Used from|
Top 20 lists in Books
View the top 20 best sellers of all time, the most reviewed books of all time and some of our editors' favorite picks. Learn more
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
Special Offers and Product Promotions
In addition to his years as a war general, his memoir also covers his childhood, his early years in the Army, his tours of Vietnam, and how he contemplated retirement before being called up as commander of Central Command, "the most diverse, strategically vitaland unstableregion of the planet." Ever the diplomat, General Franks offers insights, but little criticism of individuals. Other than expressing admiration for his own staff and for President Bush and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld in particular, he is tight-lipped about any conflict within the administration that may have occurred regarding policy issues. (The one exception is counterterrorism specialist Richard Clarke. "I never received a single operational recommendation, or a single page of actionable intelligence, from Richard Clarke," he writes). He also writes that he was surprised by the absence of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq and that no WMDs were used against American troops. Still, the invasion of Iraq was justified in his eyes: "While we may not have found actual WMD stockpiles, what the Coalition discovered was the equivalent of a disassembled pistol, lying on a table beside neatly arranged trays of bullets." American Soldier is a compelling look at the war on terrorism from one who served on the frontlines as both a warrior and a diplomat. --Shawn Carkonen --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
About the Author
General Tommy Franks retired from the Army on August 1, 2003. Commissioned a Second Lieutenant in 1967 as a distinguished graduate of the Artillery Officer Candidate School, Fort Sill, Oklahoma, he was assigned to the 9th Infantry Division, Republic of Vietnam. He also served as an Assistant Division Commander during Operations Desert Shield/Desert Storm. General Franks has been awarded three Defense Distinguished Service Medals, two Distinguished Service Medals, and four Legion of Merit awards. His other decorations include three Purple Hearts, three Bronze Stars, an Air Medal, and an Army Commendation Medal -- all with "V" for valor. In 2004 he was named a Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire. General Franks lives with his wife, Cathy, in Tampa, Florida.
More About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
Franks' career is a distinguished one, but perhaps the most telling part of which is that he was not really expected to be the outspoken, go-it-alone character that typified his Afghan and Iraq leaderships. The son of a poor family in Oklahoma and Texas regions that never quite recovered from the dust-bowl depression times, he was actually an adopted son who knew the secret years before his parents actually told him (he found his birth certificate in an old family Bible). He went to high school with the future first lady, Laura Bush, who was much more popular than he was, he wrote. He never made much of an impression in high school or his first attempt at college, but in the military, he stood out as an expert in marksmanship, and that was his ticket to OCS.
His rise through the military ranks was not meteoric -- his career spanned almost 40 years, and was fairly typical in many respects.Read more ›
Franks also discusses the intelligence on Iraq leading up to the war. As theater commander Franks talked personally with many leaders in the region, ALL of which told him that not only did Saddam had WMD, but that he would use them in a war. No one else who has produced a book on the subject had this much access.
Franks pulls few punches in AMERICAN SOLDIER, and he criticizes both the Clinton and Bush Administrations for what he perceived as pervasive arrogance on the part of some officials, including the now famous Richard Clarke. He also takes aim at America's depleted abilities to gather HUMINT (Human Intelligence), the Joint Chiefs (whose interference and constant jockeying for their Service to have more prominent roles in combat was a constant irritation), Pentagon leaks, and the media with it's taking head generals.
All in all, most readers will be interested in the Third Part, which deals with his time as CENTCOM. The first two parts, however, are important if you want to understand why General Franks took such a different approach to war than did his predessors. And military buffs will find a few gems on strategy and generalship, as well as the diplomatic side of being a high ranking officer.Read more ›
Having grown up on the southern plains in the Texas panhandle in the same approximate time, Franks opening chapters telling of his childhood in Wynnewood, OK and Midland, TX was both poignant and reminiscent of my own upbringing, making it most enjoyable.
Military men of my generation will appreciate the chapters on Franks' early military years, including his boot camp with stories of the time when drill sergeants and company commanders could and did (quite regularly) use four letter expletives to convey their point to raw recruits. As you read on, you begin to see how this man soon became a competent leader and eventually, a polished commanding officer.
Even if you are not a military aficionado, along about page 150, about the time General Franks took command of CENTCOM, you will become consumed by this book. You will learn of both the strength and weakness of our foreign intelligence at that time. At this same point in the book, the General is most proficient in giving candid and sometimes scathing personal analysis of key figures such as Donald Rumsfeld, Richard Clark, Pervez Musharraf and countless others.
The second half of this book is absolutely riveting. The reader sees the military precision and coordination of the military in dismantling the Taliban and Al Qaeda forces in Afghanistan.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
General Frank is a true American hero and true leader of men.Published 9 months ago by Amazon Customer
This is one of the bestbooks on the military I've ever read , and the book itself was in good condition. Matt JonesPublished 13 months ago by matt jones
One of the first of these biographies I listened to and really enjoyed it. It was a good story of a good man. Read morePublished 14 months ago by Barbara J. Hammerbeck
Great insight on how the American military led a Coalition of troops in fighting terrorism in response to the cowardly 9/11 attack.Published 15 months ago by Amazon Customer
Great non-fiction book that puts you right there into situations that really happened and keeps your interest all the way through from the number one man who managed the total war... Read morePublished 17 months ago by Robert S. Pasterniak
Well written. Flows nicely. Interestingly covers his entire distinguished career from Vietnam to Iraq. Read morePublished 17 months ago by Mark Twain