The General turned off the tape recorder.
"Don't think there's any way you can win this case."
But Major Sean Drummond refuses to lose. Even when the brass pick him to investigate a mass murder "committed" by Green Berets. Even when his vow of duty, honor, and country clashes with his search for the truth. Even when he finds himself forced into an uneasy alliance with a beautiful Army lawyer--and facing both a chilling conspiracy and a soldier's worst nightmare.
Brian Haig, son of former secretary of state Alexander Haig, takes aim at the bestseller lists with Secret Sanction, a military/legal thriller set against the backdrop of the Bosnian conflict. Hotshot army lawyer Sean Drummond is assigned to investigate the massacre of 35 Serbian soldiers, apparently by a team of Green Berets. He encounters resistance from the brass right away and the deeper he digs, the worse it gets. Sexual tension with army defense attorney Lisa Morrow and the execution-style death of a reporter who's covering the case add to the high-stakes excitement. If blurbs by Jack Higgins and Jeffery Deaver are any indication, this one's going to be a hit.
Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
-- PUBLISHERS WEEKLY.
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1 . Good Read
Posted December 10, 2009 by Litlmom , Cicero, InIf you like military intrigue and insight, this is the book for you. I found it very good, but somewhat on the technical side with terminology. A good glimpse of military operations.
Grand Central Publishing
March 31, 2002
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Excerpt from Secret Sanction by Brian Haig
Fort Bragg in August is so hellish, you can smell the sulfur in the air. Actually, though, it's not sulfur, it's 98 percent humidity, mixed with North Carolina dust, mixed with the raunchy bouquet of about thirty thousand men and women who spend half their lives scurrying about in the woods. Without showers. The moment I stepped off the plane, I had this fierce urge to call my bosses back in the Pentagon and beg them to reconsider. Wouldn't work though. "Sympathy," the Army likes to say, is found in the dictionary between "shit" and "syphilis," and regarded accordingly.
So I hefted up my duffel bag and oversize legal briefcase and headed for the taxi stand. Of course, this was Pope Air Force Base, which adjoins Fort Bragg, which makes it all one big, happy military installation. No taxi stand, and shame on me for not knowing that. I therefore marched straight to a payphone and called the duty sergeant at the headquarters of the 82nd Airborne Division. These are the same men and women who make their living flinging themselves out of airplanes and praying their government-issued parachutes open before their fragile bodies go splat. Mostly their prayers work. Sometimes not.
"Headquarters of the 82nd Airborne Division, Sergeant Mercor," a stern voice answered.
"Major Sean Drummond, here," I barked, doing my finest impersonation of a bitchy, obnoxious bully, which, by the by, I always do pretty well.
"How can I help you, sir?"
"How can you help me?" I demanded.
"Sorry, sir, I don't get it."
"That's pretty damned obvious, isn't it? Why wasn't the duty jeep waiting for me at the airport? Why am I standing here with my thumb up my ass?"
"We don't send jeeps out to the airport to pick up personnel. Not even officers, sir."
"Hey, Sergeant, think I'm stupid?"
I let that question linger a moment, and you could almost hear him grinding his teeth to keep from answering. Then, much friendlier, I said, "Look, I don't know if you weren't properly instructed, or just plain forgot. All I know is, the general who works upstairs in that building of yours promised a jeep would be waiting when I arrived. Now if it were to get here inside twenty minutes, then we'll just write this off as an inconvenience. Otherwise . . ."
There was this fairly long pause on the other end. The thing with Army sergeants is that they have incredible survival instincts. They have to. They spend their careers working under officers, some of whom happen to be pretty good, but plenty of whom aren't, and a man must be pretty damned artful to treat both with perfect equanimity.
"Sir, I ...well, uh, this is really irregular. No one told me to have a jeep there to meet you. I swear." Of course nobody told him. I knew that. And he knew that. But there was a world of daylight between those two facts.
"Listen, Sergeant.... Sergeant Mercor, right? It's ten-thirty at night and my patience wanes with each passing minute. What will it be?"
"All right, Major. The duty driver will be there in about twenty minutes. Don't be screwing me around, though. I'm gonna put this in the duty log. The colonel will see it in the morning," he said, making that last statement sound profoundly ominous.
"Twenty minutes," I said before hanging up. I sat on my duffel bag and waited. I should've felt bad about fibbing, but my conscience just wasn't up to it. I was tired, for one thing, and royally pissed off for another. Besides, I had a set of orders in my pocket that assigned me to perform a special investigation. In my book, at least, that entitled me to a special privilege or two.
Private Rodriguez and the duty jeep showed up exactly twenty minutes later. I was pretty damned sure Sergeant Mercor had instructed Rodriguez to get lost, or drive around in circles, or do about any damned thing except arrive one second earlier than twenty minutes. That's another thing about Army sergeants. They're woefully vengeful little creatures. I threw my duffel into the back of the humvee and climbed in the front.
"Where to?" Private Rodriguez asked, staring straight ahead.
"Visiting Officers' Quarters. Know where they are?"
A moment passed before Rodriguez sort of coughed, then said, "You assigned here, sir?"
"You're getting warmer."
"You're a lawyer, right?" he asked, glancing at the brass on my uniform that identified me as a member of the Judge Advocate General's Corps, or JAG for short.
"Rodriguez, it's late and I'm tired. I appreciate your need to make conversation, but I'm not in the mood. Just drive."