This Kind of War by T. R. Fehrenbach is the most comprehensive single-volume history of the Korean-American conflict that began in 1950 and is still affecting United States’ foreign policy. This ill conceived action tells us as much about how not to conduct a war as how to conduct one. The action was gritty and often brutal, with hand-to-hand combat in the middle of moonless nights to defend naked patches of hillside. Fehrenbach easily shifts from killing ground to the highest precincts of Washington power, chronicling the decisions that led to military and political blunders resulting in a profligate loss of American lives.
The author, an officer in the conflict, provides us with accounts of combat that could only have been written by an eyewitness in the thick of the action. But what truly sets this book apart from other military memoirs is the piercing analysis of the global political maneuvering behind the vicious ground warfare. Tragically, the Korean War has been all but forgotten in public memory. But not in the minds of military leaders, who reverently study Fehrenbach’s book at West Point and in the Pentagon as a model of historical narration.
Hailed as “a must for all soldiers and former soldiers” by an Amazon.com reviewer, This Kind of War restores the Korean War to its rightful place in American history – as a touchstone for United States foreign engagement and a lesson for politicians ready to shed American blood on faraway soil. Judging by Vietnam and Iraq, the lesson has not been learned at all.,
“This Kind of War has been studied by two generations of soldiers. Fehrenbach describes good decisions and bad ones with insight and expertise. But what he does best of all, and what is so memorable, is his eloquent, sometimes painful description of the GIs who must bear the burden of those decisions. That is the awful beauty of this book – it cuts straight to the heart of all the political and military errors and reveals the brave souls who have to bleed and die for mistakes made. A timely reissue of a military classic.”
–General Colin L. Powell, Former Secretary of State
During World War II, the author served with the U.S. Infantry and Engineers as Platoon Sergeant with an engineer battalion. He continued his military career in the Korean War, rising from Platoon Leader to Company Commander and then to Battalion Staff Officer of the 72nd Tank battalion, 2nd Infantry Division. His most enduring work is Lone Star, a one-volume history of Texas that E-Reads is also honored to publish. He now devotes his time to writing a political column for a San Antonio newspaper.
– Richard Curtis