Army Reading List - U.S. Army Professional Reading List

Title: Westmoreland’s War: Reassessing American Strategy in Vietnam

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General William C. Westmoreland has long been derided for his failed strategy of “attrition” in the Vietnam War. Historians have argued that Westmoreland’s strategy placed a premium on high “body counts” through a “big unit war” that relied almost solely on search and destroy missions. Many believe the U.S.  Army failed in Vietnam because of […]

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Title: Washington’s Crossing

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Six months after the Declaration of Independence, the American Revolution was all but lost. A powerful British force had routed the Americans at New York, occupied three colonies, and advanced within sight of Philadelphia. Yet, as David Hackett Fischer recounts in this riveting history, George Washington–and many other Americans–refused to let the Revolution die. On […]

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Title: The Unforgiving Minute: A Soldier’s Education

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U.S. Army Capt. Craig Mullaney recounts the hard lessons that only war can teach while fighting al-Qaeda in Afghanistan. This is a portrait of a junior officer grappling with the weight of war and coming to terms with what it means to lead others in combat.

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Title: SUPPLYING WAR: LOGISTICS FROM WALLENSTEIN TO PATTON

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Drawing on a very wide range of unpublished and previously unexploited sources, Martin van Creveld examines the “nuts and bolts” of war. He considers the formidable problems of movement and supply, transportation and administration, often mentioned (but rarely explored) by the vast majority of books on military history. By concentrating on logistics rather than on […]

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Title: Retribution: The Battle for Japan, 1944-45

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By the summer of 1944 it was clear that Japan’s defeat was inevitable, but how the drive to victory would be achieved remained unclear. The ensuing drama—that ended in Japan’s utter devastation—was acted out across the vast theater of Asia in massive clashes between army, air, and naval forces.  In recounting these extraordinary events, Max […]

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Title: Refighting the Last War: Command and Crisis in Korea 1950-53

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This book examines the Korean War, the paradigm of America’s conflicts with communism. He argues that, like so many wars, the Korean War was fought broadly along the lines of the war before, World War II. It shows, however, that the consequences of this error were limited by the State Department. The book examines the […]

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Title: Personal Memoirs: Ulysses S. Grant

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Among the autobiographies of great military figures, Ulysses S. Grant’s is certainly one of the finest, and it is arguably the most notable literary achievement of any American president: a lucid, compelling, and brutally honest chronicle of triumph and failure. From his frontier boyhood to his heroics in battle to the grinding poverty from which […]

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Title: Pacific Blitzkrieg: World War II in the Central Pacific

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Lacey closely examines the planning, preparation, and execution of ground operations at the corps and division level for five major invasions in the Central Pacific: Guadalcanal, Tarawa, the Marshall Islands, Saipan, and Okinawa. The commanders had to integrate the U.S. Army and Marine Corps into a single operational force, something that would have been difficult […]

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Title: Grunts Inside the American Infantry Combat Experience, World War II Through Iraq

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John C. McManus covers six decades of warfare in which the courage of American troops proved the crucial difference between victory and defeat. Based on years of archival research and personal interviews with veterans, Grunts demonstrates the vital, and too often forgotten, importance of the human element in protecting the American nation, and advances a […]

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Title: The Endgame: The Inside Story of the Struggle for Iraq, from George W. Bush to Barack Obama

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A peerless work of investigative journalism and historical recreation ranging from 2003 to 2012, it gives us the first comprehensive, inside account of arguably the most widely reported yet least understood war in American history—from the occupation of Iraq to the withdrawal of American troops. Prodigiously researched, The Endgame is not only based on an abundance […]

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