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Whattaya Mean I Can't Kill 'Em? Mass Market Paperback – October 31, 1998

4.3 out of 5 stars 22 customer reviews

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All-American heroes
We were Soldiers Once...And Young: Ia Drang--The Battle That Changed The War In Vietnam
We were Soldiers Once...And Young: Ia Drang--The Battle That Changed The War In Vietnam
We were Soldiers Once...And Young: Ia Drang--The Battle That Changed The War In Vietnam

Editorial Reviews

From the Inside Flap

"We will be in enemy territory, we will be alone,
and we will be a long way from help."

A tour in Vietnam as a Frog--a member of the navy's Underwater Demolition Team (UDT)--wasn't challenging enough for Rad Miller. So he spent most of 1968 learning to be a SEAL, completing what is arguably the toughest warrior training in the world. By early 1969, he was back in Vietnam, ready to go deep behind enemy lines with a squad of only seven men.

In his unvarnished and brutally candid account, Miller shares the raw, bloody, and courageous daily life of SEALs in Vietnam. Here are unbelievable moments in six months of missions--without a single SEAL KIA--during which his platoon ran ninety-four ops, killed forty-three of the enemy, and captured thirty-one. Stealing into hostile villages, gathering intelligence, killing or kidnapping VC officials, and surviving a tropical hell of mud, heat, leeches, and constant, life-threatening peril, Miller and his teammates undeniably earned their pay. . . .

About the Author

Rad Miller Jr. retired from IBM after nearly thirty years.
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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books; 1st edition (October 31, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0804117667
  • ISBN-13: 978-0804117661
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 0.7 x 6.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,599,305 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Mass Market Paperback
This is an excellent book. What it lacks in writing style it makes up for with brutal honesty and relentless truth-telling.
Rad Miller's book is an excellent primary source, and a useful tool for someone who wants to learn the history of the Vietnam conflict. Bearing in mind that this is only one soldier's perspective, the book perfectly captures the spirit of the late sixties and early seventies, and goes beyond simply describing combat and training, but actually grapples with the issues of the war and chaos that reigned on the homefront. A must-read.
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By A Customer on October 8, 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Looking for Rambo? Want John Wayne? Go elsewhere. Miller tells it like it really was for most combat vets. Months of training and monotony punctuated by moments of sheer panic. The best plans go wrong, the toughest troops get tired, hungry, hurt, and do almost comical things while facing death. Miller has the maturity to admit his human frailities but still manages to show that he was indeed one of the best trained, fiercest fighters in the world. I felt his pain lugging overloaded combat packs, trying to stay awake on all-night ambushes, of almost drowning while crossing rivers and streams, and the morality of staring face to face with an armed enemy and wondering if pulling the trigger is the right thing to do. There's very little military techno-talk in this book, and it can be understood by anyone who was never a soldier but wants to see what it takes to turn a young high school jock into a warrior.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
One thing can be said about this SEAL is that he sure has a sense of humor.Of course,war isnt pretty.Its sexy.But really,unlike these other books I've read,like LRRP's Ranger,boy ,does that book ramble on and on about technical issues and stuff I've never been familiar with.But Rad was able to express himself not in a robot fashion,just brain washed to kill,but the human side of being a commando.It was very exciting and intruiging.I was totally involved in it.I have read some true combat novels that just don't get to details about what was going on.Some didnt explain how it felt in combat in true real time detail.Rad Miller takes you there.I hope to get his autograph some day.
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By A Customer on December 24, 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Miller's re-cap of his life before / during his tour in Vietnam, as a Frog/SEAL is well written, and is very intense reading. His no B.S. approach to the theme that this book carries is incredible. Leave nothing out, and just tell it like it is in plain english, with a few four letter words included.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
This is one of my favorite books about the Teams. Rad is not only a character but he relates his experiences in Viet Nam with a sense of humor and yet a seriousness that comes across as the man. One of his best lines in the book is when he is told that they will be working in a no-fire zone. He says, "Whattaya mean? I can't kill 'em?"
This book is humorous, exciting and puts you in the Delta along with this team as it hunts the VC. I have read it twice and I intend on reading it again.
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By A Customer on April 21, 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I wanted to know what it was like to be a SEAL in Vietnam. This book more than explained what it was like. Miller tells his life story from graduating high school to buying a tape-deck that lasted nearly 20 years. He goes through what BUD/S was like, SEAL Training, and getting his fair share of beatings. Oh, by the way, I hate to read, but I didn't put this book down. I highly recommend it.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
The only reason why I read this book is because some one told me my uncle was in it. So I read every page looking for a mention of him. I was pleasantly surprised that the book commented on how misguided the military was. The author was very candid about problems with the Vietnam War. He definitely did not try to glamorize the war nor did he come across as some type of brutual killer which is the impression that the title cover of the book projected.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
This book should be mandatory for every officer in the military, as well as any person wanting to join the armed forces, or thinking about it. It's a down to earth tale of one man's journey from scrunchie to frogman to navy seal, and several combat operations he was involved in. The writing is fluid and conversational, it's not too technical, and the parts that are the author explains well enough.

I really can't recommend this book enough to add to any collection of non-fiction books on your shelf!
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