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Miracle at Belleau Wood : The Birth of the Modern U. S. Marine Corps
"Axelrod is one of America's great military historians. He's done it this time with riveting non-stop action that reads like the best of Hemingway's frontline reports plus the Marine Corps novels of W. E. B. Griffin. Axelrod pushes you right into the action, onto the battlefield, and never lets up. You become a firsthand witness to one of the world's great battles, proud and heart-pounding as the elite force, the Devil Dogs, are born in a small forest outside Paris. This is one book I wish I'd written!"
--Paul B. Farrell, J.D., Ph.D., is a syndicated columnist for Dow Jones's MarketWatch. He is the author of The Lazy Person's Guide to Investing and The Millionaire Code, a former investment banker with Morgan Stanley, and a former staff sergeant in the U.S. Marine Corps.
"Alan Axelrod has perfectly captured the embodiment of U.S. Marines and their unparalleled Esprit de Corps in his new book, Miracle at Belleau Wood. As a former Marine, I find Axelrod's descriptions of the combat in that bloody battle for which the Corps became legendary--and which is the foundation of its mythic lore--compelling and gut-wrenching. Miracle at Belleau Wood puts the reader in the front row, witness to the heroism and ups and downs endured by the Marines as they defeated the Germans at overwhelming odds. A must-read!"
--Lieutenant Colonel Jay Kopelman, USMCR (Ret.), best-selling author of From Baghdad, With Love
"Axelrod brings us back vividly to the shocking casualties of 'the war to end all wars,' opening up fresh insights into the nature of the fighting and the decisions that shaped a generation."
--Bing West is a correspondent for The Atlantic and the award-winning author of two books on the Iraq war. He is a former Marine in Vietnam and assistant secretary of defense.
Prolific bestseller Axelrod (Patton: A Biography, etc.) examines the evolution of the Marine Corps in this sprightly popular history of the pivotal WWI Battle of Belleau Wood in France. The Marine Corps, founded in the American Revolution, entered the 20th century on the verge of extinction. Saved by a congressional intervention that repealed Theodore Roosevelt's 1908 executive order withdrawing Marines from warships, the Marine brass looked to WWI as a chance to build up their ranks. The War Department sent two Marine brigades to France, but the U.S. commander, Gen. John Pershing, was reluctant to use them--relenting only when a German offensive threatened Paris. Belleau Wood, formerly "an idyllic patch of forest" used as a hunting preserve for the wealthy, was occupied by the Germans and transformed into "a natural fortress" bristling with machine-gun emplacements. In a savage, month-long fight, the 4th Marine Brigade pushed the entrenched Germans out of Belleau Wood, earning a new nickname from the enemy (Devil Dogs), forging a reputation as "America's fiercest warriors" and securing the future of the corps. Based exclusively on published material, Axelrod's brisk if conventional narrative provides a solid introduction to a crucial battle for fans of military history. (June)
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Showing 1-1 of the 1 most recent reviews
1 . OOH - RAH
Posted September 06, 2010 by Fred , Bolton, ONAt 56 years old, and a Canadian citizen this book made me want to run away and join the marines. A superb bit of history that laves you shaking your head in amazement at the levels to which men can ascend.
May 31, 2007
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