Book review of ‘Living in the Shadow: PTSD, and Life Post-Deployment;

I don’t usually share/do book reviews, for a number of reasons, but I’m taking exception on the book “Living in the Shadow: PTSD, and Life Post-Deployment.”

I wanted to share the review I wrote up on Amazon regarding a book that might interest many of you. A guy by the name of Capt. Bocian, who earned a Bronze Star and Purple Heart as a part of two tours in Iraq, wrote a hell of a book on PTSD and dealing with the feeling many vets feel after they exit. It’s probably the most honest post-deployment book I’ve ever read.

Here’s my review:

This was an incredible book that nearly every veteran needs to read. The book is a searing, often painful look into living with PTSD, and even vets who didn’t see combat will relate to parts of it. Such as the feeling most of us have that we were “quitters” for getting out.

Captain Bocian provides a book that’s as honest and open as anything I’ve ever read. And he’s also a hell of a writer. Parts of the book are so riveting that they’re scary. (And I’m not even talking about the combat scenes.)

Bocian opens up his soul and shares the things that have helped him deal with PTSD, and even provides a bonus chapter on his thoughts as a veteran who sacrificed so much in Iraq only to see much of it fall into the hands of ISIS.

This is a compelling read that you won’t regret buying.

Semper Fidelis to you, Captain Bocian, and all the other veterans who are struggling with PTSD and post-separation syndrome from having departed the military.

Keep the faith,

Stan R. Mitchell

Oak Ridge, Tenn.

About me:  write military action books similar to Vince Flynn, Stephen Hunter, and Tom Clancy. I’m also a prior USMC Sgt with Combat Action Ribbon, and a guy who spent 10+ years writing every day in the newspaper business — 9 of them with a newspaper that I started. Please consider subscribing for email alerts — I mostly post about American foreign policy, national security, and all things Marine Corps.

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F-35 better at close air support than originally thought?

Everyone knows I’ve been pretty critical — and quite skeptical — about the F-35. And I’ve also been a big supporter of keeping the A-10, given its superb close air support function.

But a comment on a thread I’ve been following helped molify some of my concerns. (Key word “some.”)

Dark Peasant:

For A-10 jockeys out there who haven’t been able to grasp the concept that things change, here are some comments from the F-35 ‘Myth Busting” sites:

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Ground support; Pierre says you need to be able to turn slowly, have a large gun and be on station for 4-6 hours. First up; if you can see through your aircraft, using 360 degree thermal (IR) imagery, as well as receive realtime footage of the fight from UAVs, friendly air and ground assets, why do you need to have the pilot flying slowly over the dangerous target area, gawking through through his canopy?

And as for the gun; when the A-10’s GAU-8 fires; 80% of it’s rounds will land within a 12m diameter circle. That assumes that you’re not trying to hit a moving target and are firing from 1.2km away. With a SDB II (GBU-53), an F-35 or other fighter with the right sensors, can hit within 1m of a target from up to 72km away and will will destroy or disable vehicles within a 10m radius. It’s kill radius will naturally differ based on environment, but you could easily expect soldiers to be incapacitated or killed at twice that.

Furthermore, on the topic of CAS; one issue that soldiers face when ordering air support is that when they order it, they need to retire or take cover. In Afghanistan, the Taliban have learned to recognise this, and in response, will go into hiding / take cover, only to strike again later. By being able to have CAS available at least 3 times faster (even more so considering how the F-35 is going to saturate future airspace), you can cut down or eliminate the problem. If you need endurance or overwatch, get a UCAV and have it supply CAS for a couple of days at a time.

A lot of you guys are smarter than me. What are your thoughts?

Keep the faith,

Stan R. Mitchell

Oak Ridge, Tenn.

About me: I’m a full-time, action-fiction author with books similar to Vince Flynn, Stephen Hunter, and Tom Clancy. I’m also a prior infantry Marine with Combat Action Ribbon, and entrepreneur who spent nine years running a weekly newspaper that I started. Please consider subscribing for email alerts — I mostly post about American foreign policy, national security, and all things Marine Corps.

Dempsey Says Iraqis Weren’t Driven Out of Ramadi, They Drove

Last week, I wrote about Iraqi units abandoning Ramadi.

Turns out, it was even worse than we thought…

Dempsey Says Iraqis Weren’t Driven Out of Ramadi, They Drove.

Okay, then…

Honestly, the BS is getting so thick over there that it’s hard to know what’s the truth or what’s not. First, a sandstorm was blamed for the terrifying loss… (Did I mention the Iraqis had a 10-to-1 advantage over ISIS?)

But the sandstorm had no effect on airstrikes, they’re now saying.

And I’m not sure if this is good news or bad news, but there are now Iranian troops, artillery, and heavy weapons taking part in operations in Iraq.

I’m increasingly convinced that Iraq is a failed state, and to restore it would take an enormous amount of American resources, including boots on the ground. What it seems we have now is a nation divided, and Iran has either expanded its borders or gained a new ally/nation-state.

What say you guys? And what would you do if you were President?

Keep the faith,

Stan R. Mitchell

Oak Ridge, Tenn.

About me: I’m a full-time, action-fiction author with books similar to Vince Flynn, Stephen Hunter, and Tom Clancy. I’m also a prior infantry Marine with Combat Action Ribbon, and a guy who spent 10+ years writing every day in the newspaper business. Please consider subscribing for email alerts — I mostly post about things American foreign policy, national security, and all things Marine Corps.

P.S. You should really consider buying this book: The Shaolin Workout: 28 Days to Transforming Your Body and Soul the Warrior’s Way. It’s absolutely changed my life for the better.

Saudi Arabia stops its military action in Yemen

Saudi Arabia has ended its air campaign against Shiite rebels in Yemen.

Looks like air alone wasn’t getting the job done and only making things worse.

Great article about it here if you get a moment: Why Saudi Arabia rolled back its Yemen military action. (H/T Blake K. Baxter)

Keep the faith,

Stan R. Mitchell

Oak Ridge, Tenn.

About me: I’m a full-time, action-fiction author with books similar to Vince Flynn, Stephen Hunter, and Tom Clancy. I’m also a prior infantry Marine with Combat Action Ribbon, and a guy who spent 10+ years writing every day in the newspaper business. Please consider subscribing for email alerts — I mostly post about things American foreign policy, national security, and all things Marine Corps.

P.S. You should really consider buying this book: The Shaolin Workout: 28 Days to Transforming Your Body and Soul the Warrior’s Way. It’s absolutely changed my life for the better.

Re-starting up the site

Hey guys,

I was away longer than I expected, but I’m going to be getting the site fired up again.

Appreciate your all’s patience, and as a reminder, I’ll be posting about American foreign policy, national security, and all things Marine Corps.

Keep the faith,

Stan R. Mitchell

Oak Ridge, Tenn.

About me: I’m an action fiction author with books similar to Vince Flynn, Stephen Hunter, and Tom Clancy. I’m also a prior infantry Marine with Combat Action Ribbon, and a guy who spent 10+ years writing every day in the newspaper business. Please consider subscribing for email alerts — I mostly post about things American foreign policy, national security, and all things Marine Corps.

Taking a short break

Hey guys,

I’m going to be putting this blog on hiatus for a while. About three reasons why.

First, my books — thankfully! — have taken off. And taking time away from writing fiction is something I really need to carefully weight.

Secondly, I’m not as engaged on foreign policy as I was. Or, I guess I’m less pissed off. Or maybe I just feel less optimistic about any impact I can have on the situation.

Finally, it seems everything is so political these days. It’s just taken the fun out of writing about anything. Whether we’re talking about deployments or changes in force structure, everything ends up being Obama’s fault. Or Bush’s, depending on which way you roll.

So, I’m going to put the blog on hiatus until the time comes to fire it up again. And most likely, if we start to move toward another war, or I start to miss it in about three or four months (which is likely if I know me!), then it will get fired up again. Thus, if you’re a visitor just dropping by and like what you see, don’t forget to subscribe for alerts up at the top right.

That’s it from here. At least for now. Semper Fidelis to all my brothers and sisters out there. Don’t forget you can find me more regularly at my main blog/website: http://stanrmitchell.com.

Keep the faith,

Stan R. Mitchell

Oak Ridge, Tenn.

Can we really do without the Marine Corps

The following is a guest post from Mike P.

Mike crossed my path on the internet, finding me at my author site. We quickly became friends once I learned he served in 1st Battalion, 8th Marines — the same unit I served in.

Take it away, Mike.

Keep the faith,

Stan R. Mitchell

Oak Ridge, Tenn.

 

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That question of “Can we really do without the Marine Corps” has been pondered, oh, for the last two hundred years or so.

And it’s been cropping up again of late. (Recently here in this article.)

Blah blah blah. Why do we need the Marines, outdated, unable to change with the times, redundant.

Uh, no. Here’s the proof in this article.

And I can probably think of a few more. How about you?

Mike P.