Friday, December 14, 2012

Read: The Outpost by Jake Tapper

As I remind my readers from time to time, not everything is about autism. If you need to buy a special gift for that special person, here it is:

Today I am recommending a book called The Outpost: An Untold Sory of American Valor by the ABC White House correspondent Jake Tapper. If there is someone in your life who revels in Tom Clancy, Brad Thor, Nelson DeMille or Vince Flynn, this book is definitely for them. But unlike those fiction writing, high drama, war, techno and terror thriller novels, The Outpost, is as real as real gets.

The Outpost is the true story of Outpost Keating. Perched in a precarious region of Afghanistan, right on the Pakistan border. It is unforgiving territory, and a hostile landscape. Surrounded by a people with ancient customs coupled with a survivors view of the war that is raging around them, the American soldiers stationed in this rugged land, are forced to live by wit, training and true camaraderie in order to survive. And no, they all do not make it home and some that do, left a large part of themselves in the war zone.

Buy Here
Mr. Tapper is able to convey who our soldiers are beyond the uniform. He humanizes them and their families. He makes you feel what they feel and understand the sacrifice that their families make. You meet the West Point grad and the rehabbed drug addict trying to restart his life. You meet the kid who met his girlfriend on JDate, those looking for a way out of poverty, and the multiple sons of immigrants who would never think to do anything but join the US army. You realize that those who volunteer to serve our nation come from every economic strata, educational background, religion, ethnicity and race. You realize that these young people are the best of this nation. Then you walk with them into the Valley of the Shadow of Death.

This book is not an indictment of any one President or administration policy. It is NOT a political book. It is an American story. One that is too often forgotten in today's day and age. This book is a recounting of the true events that took place in this hell hole and the young dedicated patriots who did what their nation asked them to do. A nation, by the way, that all too often forgets to say thankyou.

As Mr. Tapper writes," I did not write this book to convey lessons to be learned. I wrote it so that you as a reader (and I as a reporter) might better understand what it is that our troops go through, why they go through it, and what their experience has been like in Afghanistan."

We, as a nation, owe it to these brave individuals to not forget what they have sacrificed for us. We, as a nation, owe it to these brave individuals to not forget that when asked they stood up and answered our call to put themselves in harms way in order to defend our freedoms and way of life.

One particular poignant scene stays with me. When during a "conference" with the local tribes-people, a young woman intelligence officer meets with some Afghani women. One of the younger women hands the American officer her child and says, "you take him." The officer thought the woman was being friendly, allowing her to hold her child. But the real story was that the young Afghani mother was begging the American officer to take her child back to the USA.

Too often, we in these United States forget just how lucky we happen to be and just how much the rest of the world truly wishes they were us. You see, we are not such a hated nation as some would actually have you believe.

Read this book. Then remind yourself come Veteran's Day and Memorial Day to say thank you. It's the least any American should do.


Again, I want to remind everyone I do not gain any monetary value for clicking on the ink above. I just happen to link to Amazon because that is where I buy most of my books since I am a Prime member. But Mr. Tapper's book is available at all book sellers and Barnes and Noble on line as well. Purchase it wherever it is best for you.