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    Member maxim's Avatar
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    Ghost Soldiers - Army Ranger Prisoner Rescue from Cabanatuan

    THE GHOST SOLDIERS - 317 pages

    By Hampton Sides - Anchor Books Division of Random House

    The account of the the Army Rangers assembled for sole purpose to rescue survivors of the Bataan Death March from the Cabanatuan Japaneseicon prison camp in January 1945.

    The book should be read from very front to back inclusive of the Prologue and Epilogue.
    Detailed and graphic accounts of Japanese prison life and the physical toll on the human body as well as forming the Rangers and training for the mission. The support by local militia contributed in the success of the rescue as well as at some times, near impossible odds of success.

    Armed with only small arms, grenades, and bazookas carried through the jungle, the raid was completed with relatively few casualties.

    I found it well written and many of the characters background personalized many of the details. There are photos and maps to provide the location of the camp, and route of the Rangers.


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    An excellent read. Better than the movie as usual but the movie wasn't too bad.

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    Raid books

    I first read "Ghost Soldiers" but almost passed it up because the title sounded so hokey. The tile alludes to the POWs that were rescued that were real people, not ghosts. So the title is misleading, and obviously intended to attract sales, so if you're looking for ghost stories this isn't the book for you.

    I recently acquired a used copy of "The Great Raid" by William Breuer, upon which the movie was based. The title of this book could be for most any military operation that was executed as a raid, and therefore uninformative and misleading. Breuer interviewed many of the people involved in the event and used those interviews to advantage. Breuer's book provides much the same information as "Ghost Soldiers" and I have to report that I preferred the organization and style of "Ghost Soldiers" over "The Great Raid."



    In fairness to whoever wrote the titles of these books the objective was to illicit interest in reading the book, otherwise they might have gone unsold and unread. An accurate title such "On to Cabanatuan!" which is meaningless to most people would not have sold copies.

    One small mistake in "The Great Raid" Capt. Arthur "Bull" Simons, (the leader of the later assault on the Son Tay prison camp in North Vietnam), did not participate in the Cabanatuan operation.
    Last edited by RT Ellis; 09-02-2019 at 01:39 PM.

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