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American Spartan

The Promise, the Mission, and the Betrayal of Special Forces Major Jim Gant
Length: 15 hrs and 40 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (13 ratings)

Non-member price: $26.66

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Publisher's Summary

Lawrence of Arabia meets Sebastian Junger's War in this unique, incendiary, and dramatic true story of heroism and heartbreak in Afghanistan written by a Pulitzer Prize-nominated war correspondent.

Some have called him "Lawrence of Afghanistan". To the Pashtun tribesmen he is "Commander Jim", leader of the "bearded ones". He is Army Special Forces Major Jim Gant, one of the most charismatic and controversial U.S. commanders of modern memory, a man who changed the face of America's war in Afghanistan when his critical white paper, "One Tribe at a Time", went viral at the Pentagon, the White House, and on Capitol Hill in 2009.

A decorated Green Beret who had spent years training indigenous fighters, Jim argued for embedding autonomous units with tribes across Afghanistan: These American soldiers would live among Afghans for extended periods, not only to train and equip tribal militias, but to fight - and even die - alongside them in battle. He argued that we could earn the trust of the Afghans and transform them into a reliable ally with whom we could defeat the Taliban and Al Qaeda networks. The military's top brass, including General David Petraeus, then commander of U.S. Central Command and overseeing the war in Afghanistan, and Admiral Eric Olson, head of Special Operations Command, approved the plan and gave Jim the go-ahead to embark on the mission.

p>A war story like no other, an unprecedented account of a warrior who took up the cause of villagers as if it were his own, and of a woman on the front lines of a distant war, American Spartan is an unforgettable tale - and one of the most remarkable and emotionally resonant narratives of war ever published.

©2014 Ann Scott Tyson (P)2014 HarperCollins Publishers

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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    3 out of 5 stars
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a warrior true n true

this is a story of a legand n a betrayal.
soemting we see often..
the greed of higer appointments. is someting that is everywere.
thx for the time.. put into writing this book.
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if the listeners is lloking for an action book. this isnt it.but if the listener is looking ofr the skills
of war n negotiations.. this is a good guide book

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Contemplative, challenges the common perception.

There was good use of male and female narration through this book to support the main players.
It really supports the need for greater intervention for SF guys suffering PTSD and the divide between what politicians think is achievable and what it takes to get there - they are unconventional forces for a reason!

At times a challenging listen at times, worth it in the end.

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  • Hunter
  • 17-07-2014

THE TRUE ARMY OF ONE!!!"THE SPARTAN"

This is coming from a guy who was in the Army and my father retired from the Army. Major Gant was a soldiers soldier, the type of gung ho officer everyone wanted. After reading this book I'm ashamed that the top brass let this happen!! Did Major Gant break some Army regs.? YES!! Has most every solider in the Army done the same? YES!!! Jim Gant is a true Spartan. He got the job done and never lost a man down range and that is the stuff the Army can't take away. Major Gant's legend will grow and it should. I think Jim did turn tribal but that is what he was asked to do.Taking Ann Scott in was over the top but the heart wants what the heart wants. Drinking beer on christmas and you loose your rank? I was in Kuwait and alcohol and more was available while I was deployed. Everyone who has served in the military world knows Major Jim Gant was shafted. Its sad but Jim Gant can watch my six anytime!!!! One article 15 can't take away what you did for this country. Thanks for all you have done and your service!!!! Major Jim Gant makes me proud to say I was in the Army!!!! Hooah!!!

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 14-10-2019

Wow! One of the best books I’ve read in a while!

And absolutely fascinating story about the intelligence and sacrifice of one man for his country and the Afghan people. I read over 100 books a year and this is one of the best books I’ve read lately.

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  • RICARDO DEL POZO
  • 12-08-2019

American Spartan

This is undoubtedly the best book I have ever read as a retired Army vet this should be a required reading to every officer in our ranks this is exactly how the Army is ran by officers that are not concerned with winning but getting promoted and wi do so at anyone’s expense as they live like kings and pass judgement down from there thrown to the warrior on the ground that has sacrificed so much while they sacrifice so little if anything at all.

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  • Hollywood Mike
  • 24-12-2018

Unconventional Warfare is Risky Business

The story is amazing. The characters deep. Opens the door a crack and gives a peek at the dark side. Not all heros are spit and polish super snipers with high and tights. This book helps explain why.

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  • Aaron
  • 03-12-2018

A scatter shot book.

This book was all over the place with no real Rhyme or Reason. I think that the author was so emotionally attached to the story that she could not write it in a order that made sense. That lead to a non-chronological jumbled mess of a story.

On top of that it was hard to read as a infantry leader because Major Gant did so many things wrong as a leader. I was hoping to learn some lesons to lead troops and I did and he did a lot of things right. But he put his own desires and wants in front of his men multiple times.

is the system flawed? Yes. But he did a lot of things wrong and I cant imagine brining someone I love to a warzone putting them me and my men at risk for my own selfish desires.

I cant recommend this book.

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  • James F.
  • 09-11-2018

Really self serving book

The book spent hours.... really just working to justify one officer's fall from grace. Sad.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 31-08-2018

an amazing story

an amazing story account of a man who wanted to do great things and was.

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  • David Moseley
  • 24-08-2018

What happened to Jim Gant was absolutely atrocious

This book illuminates exactly what is wrong with the United States military. What happened to Jim shows that senior leadership does not have an accurate depiction of what is taking place on the ground. Jim wasn't fighting a war Jim was ending a war the right way. gym was bringing people together to end the bloodshed. The biggest problem was senior leadership wanted a war and they wanted to keep the war. And Jim threatened that. Jim is not only a great military officer, he's one of the greatest, he is a good human and one of the best representatives of humanity. History will show the legacy of Jim Gant.

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  • Deez
  • 27-05-2018

Excellent book and true insight into the military!

Unfortunately the higher up you go in the military it's all politics and screws over the soldiers and heroes on the battlefield!
A very well told story and great book!

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  • Alex
  • 16-05-2018

Excellent

The story was very well-told and engaging. It's difficult not to become emotionally invested in Major Gant's story. What was done to him was a disgrace and a black mark on the Army's record.

Thank you Jim for your service to our country and the Afghan people. You're an inspiration, a patriot, and despite what some pinhead say, you're the true embodiment of what it means to be a green beret.