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Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Eyes on Target

"In times of war or uncertainty there is a special breed of warrior ready to answer our Nation's call. A common man with uncommon desire to succeed.

Forged by adversity, he stands alongside America's finest special operations forces to serve his country, the American people, and protect their way of life.

Brave men have fought and died building the proud tradition and feared reputation that I am bound to uphold. In the worst of conditions, the legacy of my teammates steadies my resolve and silently guides my every deed. I will not fail." (Portions of the United States Navy SEAL - The SEAL Creed.

If you are a member, it doesn't matter where or when you served. You can show up uninvited at funerals of the youngest or oldest veterans and be hailed as a brother by total strangers. You can phone another SEAL whom you've never met and be taken for a drink. You might show up to mow the lawn of a widow whose husband died before you served. The bonds are strong partly because the group is so small. There have been fewer than three thousand U.S. Navy SEALs in the history of the world and about half of them are still alive. They all know, or know of, each other. The SEALs call themselves a "brotherhood," and they actually are one. What defines a SEAL is his unwillingness to never, ever give up. It requires extraordinary will in all three aspects of human existence: body, mind and spirit. Very, very few men are dominant in all three." (excerpt from Eyes on Target)

The SEAL Code
Loyalty to Country, Team, and Teammate
Serve with Honor and Integrity On and Off the Battlefield
Ready to Lead, Ready to Follow, Never Quit
Take Responsibility for your Actions and the Actions of Your Teammates
Excel as Warriors through Discipline and Innovation
Train for War, Fight to Win, Defeat our Nation's Enemies
Earn Your Trident every day.

I have always admired the hard work and dedication of our armed forces but none so much as the Navy SEALs especially after reading Eyes on Target: Inside Stories From the Brotherhood of the U.S. Navy SEALs by Scott McEwen and Richard Miniter. It truly takes the readers back into the origins of the SEALs, through training, graduation and missions where they were not always supported by our government through the politics that plague getting the job done. 

Both of these authors share some of the infamous stories that we, as readers, may have heard about, but include details most of us have not heard. From Operation Red Wings in Afghanistan where the lives of Lt Michael Murphy, Senior Crew Chief Dan Healy, communications officer Dan Dietz, and sniper Matthew Axelson were lost to Fallujah which claimed the lives of U.S. Navy SEAL Scott Helvenston and three American Blackwater contractors whose bodies were left hanging from a city bridge over the Euphrates river; and finally the Benghazi attacks that have taken the lives of U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens, Gregory Hicks and Tyrone Woods both former U.S. Navy SEALs while our government sat back for hours and did nothing while watching live video feeds sent by drones of what was happening. 

What is appalling reading this is why our government and even our current President did nothing to expedite the rescue of these men even though for weeks Ambassador Stevens asked for more security at the U.S. Embassy in Libya. Due to budget cutbacks they never provided him the assets he asked for even when violence was escalating and numerous attacks to the Embassy showed that insurgents were testing the response of what could be accomplished in small steps. How people sat back knowing there were five possible scenarios that could have saved the lives of Hicks and Woods but none of them were considered. 

Included in this book are detailed timelines of even during the Benghazi attack, sample rescue scenarios from a military expert who believes that help could have reached Benghazi compound in time, as well as the U.S. House Republican Conference Interim Progress Report on the events surrounding the September 11, 2012 Terrorist Attacks on Benghazi. 

I received Eyes on Target by Scott McEwen and Richard Miniter compliments of Center Street Publishing for my honest review. I did not receive any monetary compensation for my review and the opinions are strictly my own unless otherwise noted. It does provide the reader with enough details on what was happening during those attacks and what our own government response was and how they continue to intervene in playing politics when it comes to getting in the way of the SEALs getting the job done. It is saddening to see how in so many other situations this would never have happened, but why it unfolded the way it did on 9/11 needs to be addressed and resolved. There is too many questions that still remain to be answered by our own president and those that were in a position to provide help but didn't. I easily rate this book a 5 out of 5 stars!

For more information about Eyes on Target, Scott McEwen, Richard Miniter or where you can pick up your own copy of this book, please click on the links below: 

You can find Scott McEwen on Facebook to stay up to date on all his latest books.

To read more reviews on Eyes on Target, please visit Center Street's website. 

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