Catalogue

COVID-19: Updates on library services and operations.

In the company of soldiers : a chronicle of combat in Iraq /
Rick Atkinson.
imprint
New York : H. Holt, 2004.
description
319 p.
ISBN
0805075615
format(s)
Book
Holdings
More Details
imprint
New York : H. Holt, 2004.
isbn
0805075615
catalogue key
5118208
A Look Inside
About the Author
Author Affiliation
Rick Atkinson was a staff writer and senior editor at The Washington Post for twenty years.
Excerpts
Excerpt from Book
FromIn the Company of Soldiers: We turned around. Najaf was pacified, at least for today. Back at the middle school where No Slack had its battalion command post, Hodges told Petraeus that he had declared Ali's shrine to be a demilitarized zone, "so there's no military presence west of Highway 9." He also had issued edicts outlawing revenge killings, but allowing the looting of Baath Party or Fedayeen properties. "You see guys walking down the street with desks, office chairs, lights, curtains," Hodges said, and I wondered whether authorized pilfering was a slippery slope toward anarchy. Before we walked back outside, Chris Hughes showed me a terrain model that had been discovered in a bathroom stall in a Baathist headquarters. Built on a sheet of plywood, roughly five feet by three feet, it depicted the Iraqi plan for Najaf's defense. Green toy soldiers, representing the Americans, stood below the escarpment on the southwestern approach to the city. Red toy soldiers, representing the Iraqis, occupied revetments along the perimeter avenues, with fallback positions designated in the city center. The model included little plastic cars, plastic palm trees, even plastic donkeys. Nowhere did I see JDAMs, Apaches, Kiowas, Hellfires, or signs of reality.
Flap Copy
Pulitzer Prize Winner Rick Atkinson Provides an Eyewitness Account of the War Against Iraq-and a Vivid Portrait of a Remarkable Group of Soldiers. For soldiers in the 101st Airborne Division, the road to Baghdad began with a midnight flight out of Fort Campbell, Kentucky, in late February 2003. For Rick Atkinson, who would spend nearly two months covering the division for The Washington Post, the war in Iraq provided a unique opportunity to observe today's U.S. Army in combat. Now, in this extraordinary account of his odyssey with the 101st, Atkinson presents an intimate, wry, and revealing portrait of the soldiers who fight the expeditionary conflicts that have become the hallmark of our age. Granted complete access to the commanders and troops of the 101st, Atkinson saw their war from the preparations in Kuwait through the occupation of Baghdad. He sat in on the daily briefings as the division's attacks were planned, and then watched from the front lines as the battles were fought. As the war unfolded, he witnessed the division's struggles to overcome a murderous attack by one of its own soldiers, a disastrous Apache helicopter raid, and fierce resistance from guerrilla diehards in Najaf, Karbala, and Hilla. Throughout, Atkinson saw that no matter how much the military stressed "stand-off" killing power-the ability to inflict great damage from a relatively safe distance-the Army's success ultimately depended on the courage of soldiers who engage the enemy directly. At the center of Atkinson's drama stands the compelling figure of Major General David H. Petraeus, described by one comrade as "the most competitive man on the planet." Atkinson spent much of his time in Iraq at Petraeus's elbow, where he had an unobstructed view of the stresses, anxieties, and large joys of commanding 17,000 soldiers in combat. Atkinson observes Petraeus wrestle with innumerable tactical conundrums; he sees him teach, goad, and lead his troops and subordinate commanders in several intense battles. All around Petraeus, we watch the men and women of a storied division grapple with the challenges of waging war in an unspeakably harsh environment. But even as the military wins an overwhelming victory, we also see portents of the battles that would haunt the occupation in the long months ahead. With the eye of a master storyteller, the premier military historian of his generation puts us on the battlefield and inside the U.S. Army. In the Company of Soldiers is a dramatic, utterly fresh view of the modern American soldier in action.
First Chapter
From In the Company of Soldiers:

We turned around. Najaf was pacified, at least for today. Back at the middle school where No Slack had its battalion command post, Hodges told Petraeus that he had declared Ali's shrine to be a demilitarized zone, "so there's no military presence west of Highway 9." He also had issued edicts outlawing revenge killings, but allowing the looting of Baath Party or Fedayeen properties. "You see guys walking down the street with desks, office chairs, lights, curtains," Hodges said, and I wondered whether authorized pilfering was a slippery slope toward anarchy.

Before we walked back outside, Chris Hughes showed me a terrain model that had been
discovered in a bathroom stall in a Baathist headquarters. Built on a sheet of plywood, roughly five feet by three feet, it depicted the Iraqi plan for Najaf's defense. Green toy soldiers, representing the Americans, stood below the escarpment on the southwestern approach to the city. Red toy soldiers, representing the Iraqis, occupied revetments along the perimeter avenues, with fallback positions designated in the city center. The model included little plastic cars, plastic palm trees, even plastic donkeys. Nowhere did I see JDAMs, Apaches, Kiowas, Hellfires, or signs of reality.
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Library Journal on 2004-03-15:
Wars come at a human cost to both the victors and the vanquished, and Pulitzer Prize-winning author Atkinson (An Army at Dawn) loses no time reminding readers that, all technological advances aside, warfare is still brutal and deadly for those at the tip of the spear. As an embedded journalist in the Iraqi headquarters of the 101st Airborne Division from February 2003 until the declared end of major combat operations in April, Atkinson became closest to Maj. Gen. David Petraeus. From this vantage point, he was able to watch the operation unfold and closely observe the development of senior combat leaders in the crucible of battle. While Atkinson asserts that the "war's predicate was phony"-which thus "cheapened the sacrifices of the dead and living alike"-he argues that it is imperative not to "conflate the warriors with the war." He found the warrior leaders of the 101st "uncommonly excellent" and relates their great endurance, flexibility, resourcefulness, and abiding concern for the welfare of their soldiers throughout all the challenges and hardships of the campaign. This fluid battle narrative will hold wide appeal and is recommended for all public libraries. [Previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 12/03.]-Edward Metz, Combined Arms Research Lib., Leavenworth, KS (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Appeared in Publishers Weekly on 2004-02-09:
A Pulitzer-winning Washington Post correspondent and military historian gives the best account yet to come out of the Iraq War, chronicling the unit in which the author was embedded, the 101st Airborne, or Screaming Eagles, and particularly its headquarters. This inevitably puts much emphasis on the division commander, the intense, competitive and thoroughly professional Maj. Gen. David Petraeus. But no one is left out, from General Wallace, the gifted corps commander, to a Muslim convert and the victims of his ghastly but little publicized fragging incident at the opening of the war. The narrative covers this large cast from the division's being called up for the war at Fort Campbell, Ky., through to the author's departure from the unit after the fall of Baghdad. Through the eyes of the men he associated with, we see excess loads of personal gear being lugged into Iraq and insufficient supplies of essentials like ammunition and water (the reason for the infamous "pause"). We see sandstorms and the limitations of the Apache attack helicopter, and understand the legal framework for avoiding civilian casualties and "collateral damage," and much else that went right or wrong-in a manner that is antitriumphalist, but not antimilitary. The son of an army officer and thoroughly up to date on the modern American army, the author pays an eloquent and incisive tribute to how the men and women of the 101st won their part of the war in Iraq, in a manner that bears comparison to his Pulitzer-winning WWII volume, An Army at Dawn. Superb writing and balance make this the account to beat. $150,000 ad/promo; author tour. (Mar. 15) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Reviews
This item was reviewed in:
Kirkus Reviews,
Library Journal, December 2003
Booklist, February 2004
Publishers Weekly, February 2004
Library Journal, March 2004
Chicago Tribune, April 2004
New York Times Book Review, April 2004
School Library Journal, June 2004
To find out how to look for other reviews, please see our guides to finding book reviews in the Sciences or Social Sciences and Humanities.
Summaries
Main Description
For soldiers in the 101st Airborne Division, the road to Baghdad began with a midnight flight out of Fort Campbell, Kentucky, in late February 2003. For Rick Atkinson, who would spend nearly two months covering the division for The Washington Post, the war in Iraq provided a unique opportunity to observe today's U.S. Army in combat. Now, in this extraordinary account of his odyssey with the 101st, Atkinson presents an intimate and revealing portrait of the soldiers who fight the expeditionary wars that have become the hallmark of our age.At the center of Atkinson's drama stands the compelling figure of Major General David H. Petraeus, described by one comrade as 'the most competitive man on the planet.' Atkinson spent virtually all day every day at Petraeus's elbow in Iraq, where he had an unobstructed view of the stresses, anxieties, and large joys of commanding 17,000 soldiers in combat. Atkinson watches Petraeus wrestle with innumerable tactical conundrums and direct several intense firefights; he watches him teach, goad, and lead his troops and his subordinate commanders. And all around Petraeus, we see the men and women of a storied division grapple with the challenges of waging war in an unspeakably harsh environment. With the eye of a master storyteller, the premier military historian of his generation puts us right on the battlefield. In the Company of Soldiers is a compelling, utterly fresh view of the modern American soldier in action.
Main Description
From Pulitzer Prize winner and bestselling author Rick Atkinson comes an eyewitness account of the war against Iraq and a vivid portrait of a remarkable group of soldiers For soldiers in the 101st Airborne Division, the road to Baghdad began with a midnight flight out of Fort Campbell, Kentucky, in late February 2003. For Rick Atkinson, who would spend nearly two months covering the division for The Washington Post, the war in Iraq provided a unique opportunity to observe today's U.S. Army in combat. Now, in this extraordinary account of his odyssey with the 101st, Atkinson presents an intimate and revealing portrait of the soldiers who fight the expeditionary wars that have become the hallmark of our age. At the center of Atkinson's drama stands the compelling figure of Major General David H. Petraeus, described by one comrade as "the most competitive man on the planet." Atkinson spent virtually all day every day at Petraeus's elbow in Iraq, where he had an unobstructed view of the stresses, anxieties, and large joys of commanding 17,000 soldiers in combat. Atkinson watches Petraeus wrestle with innumerable tactical conundrums and direct several intense firefights; he watches him teach, goad, and lead his troops and his subordinate commanders. And all around Petraeus, we see the men and women of a storied division grapple with the challenges of waging war in an unspeakably harsh environment. With the eye of a master storyteller, the premier military historian of his generation puts us right on the battlefield. In the Company of Soldiers is a compelling, utterly fresh view of the modern American soldier in action.
Main Description
From Pulitzer Prize winner and bestselling author Rick Atkinson comes an eyewitness account of the war against Iraq and a vivid portrait of a remarkable group of soldiers For soldiers in the 101st Airborne Division, the road to Baghdad began with a midnight flight out of Fort Campbell, Kentucky, in late February 2003. For Rick Atkinson, who would spend nearly two months covering the division for The Washington Post, the war in Iraq provided a unique opportunity to observe today's U.S. Army in combat. Now, in this extraordinary account of his odyssey with the 101st, Atkinson presents an intimate and revealing portrait of the soldiers who fight the expeditionary wars that have become the hallmark of our age. At the center of Atkinson's drama stands the compelling figure of Major General David H. Petraeus, described by one comrade as "the most competitive man on the planet." Atkinson spent virtually all day every day at Petraeus's elbow in Iraq, where he had an unobstructed view of the stresses, anxieties, and large joys of commanding 17,000 soldiers in combat. Atkinson watches Petraeus wrestle with innumerable tactical conundrums and direct several intense firefights; he watches him teach, goad,and lead his troops and his subordinate commanders. And all around Petraeus, we see the men and women of a storied division grapple with the challenges of waging war in an unspeakably harsh environment. With the eye of a master storyteller, the premier military historian of his generation puts us right on the battlefield. In the Company of Soldiers is a compelling, utterly fresh view of the modern American soldier in action.
Main Description
From Pulitzer Prize winner and bestselling author Rick Atkinson comes an eyewitness account of the war against Iraq and a vivid portrait of a remarkable group of soldiersFor soldiers in the 101st Airborne Division, the road to Baghdad began with a midnight flight out of Fort Campbell, Kentucky, in late February 2003. For Rick Atkinson, who would spend nearly two months covering the division for The Washington Post, the war in Iraq provided a unique opportunity to observe today's U.S. Army in combat. Now, in this extraordinary account of his odyssey with the 101st, Atkinson presents an intimate and revealing portrait of the soldiers who fight the expeditionary wars that have become the hallmark of our age. At the center of Atkinson's drama stands the compelling figure of Major General David H. Petraeus, described by one comrade as "the most competitive man on the planet." Atkinson spent virtually all day every day at Petraeus's elbow in Iraq, where he had an unobstructed view of the stresses, anxieties, and large joys of commanding 17,000 soldiers in combat. Atkinson watches Petraeus wrestle with innumerable tactical conundrums and direct several intense firefights; he watches him teach, goad, and lead his troops and his subordinate commanders. And all around Petraeus, we see the men and women of a storied division grapple with the challenges of waging war in an unspeakably harsh environment. With the eye of a master storyteller, the premier military historian of his generation puts us right on the battlefield. In the Company of Soldiers is a compelling, utterly fresh view of the modern American soldier in action.
Table of Contents
Prologuep. 1
Peace
Rough Men Stand Readyp. 11
Good for You and Good for Mep. 29
"This Thing Is Going to Go"p. 43
The Land of Not Quite Rightp. 61
The Garden Statep. 79
War
"The Bold Thing Is Usually the Right Thing"p. 103
Enemy in the Wirep. 125
The Cry of Beasts in Their Desolate Housesp. 139
"A Man Just Sort of Exists"p. 159
Alexandria to Zoep. 181
An Army of Bonesp. 193
Nebuchadnezzar Goes Downp. 215
"War Is a Bitch"p. 241
At the Gates of Babylonp. 257
"Every Thing Has Its Place"p. 277
Afterwordp. 297
Author's Notep. 304
Glossaryp. 308
Indexp. 310
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

This information is provided by a service that aggregates data from review sources and other sources that are often consulted by libraries, and readers. The University does not edit this information and merely includes it as a convenience for users. It does not warrant that reviews are accurate. As with any review users should approach reviews critically and where deemed necessary should consult multiple review sources. Any concerns or questions about particular reviews should be directed to the reviewer and/or publisher.

  link to old catalogue

Report a problem