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The Element of Surprise: Navy SEALS in Vietnam [Kindle Edition]

Darryl Young
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)

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Book Description

It used to be said that the night belonged to Charlie. But that wasn't true where SEALs patrolled. For six months in 1970, fourteen men in Juliett Platoon of the Navy's SEAL Team One--incuding the author--carried out over a hundred missions in the Mekong Delta without a single platoon fatality. Their primary mission: kidnap enemy soldiers--alive--for interrogation.


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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Impressive account of impressive unit 13 Jan. 2006
By Nigel Collier VINE VOICE
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
I have to admit that I read this book a very long time ago (more than 15 years) and so this review will be short on specific detail. However - it did leave enough of an impression on me that I remember it being a very good read. A large, initial part of the the book covers the author's selection course for the US Navy SEALs, and then goes on to recount his experiences during two tours of Vietnam.
The SEAL selection course was as arduous and exacting as any other course for other of the world's notable special forces - including the SAS and even the Selous Scouts. It is absolutely brutal and utterly uncompromising. Volunteers, I think at the time, were drawn from regular US Navy personnel and underwent the usual physical and mental trials and challenges with a particular emphasis on an endless marathon of swimming and small boat handling tasks. The culmination of the selection course (which weeds out a massive proportion of the initial hopefuls) is 'Hell Week': this includes, after 48 hours of no sleep and freezing swims and boat marathons, the surviving volunteers are forced to lie down on a football pitch...if they fall asleep, they're OUT!
Needless to say our author made it through, and goes on to tell us about the SEALs operations in Vietnam - and these are every bit as hairy and amazing as you'd expect. I can't remember the style of the author - his writing style, how intimate or thoughtful his accounts were, rather I remember more the details of his operations. To be honest - impressive and courageous though the operations were - they weren't all a great credit to the SEALs, and some were in fact disastrous and even farcical in their planning and execution.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars EXCELENT book about SEALS in Vietnam. 25 Oct. 2001
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I just LOVE this book. It gives all the gritty details, everything a SEAL did before a mission during and after. A personal insight into how the man operated. Its just a bloody stunning great book. Go and get it now!
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Being a great fan of military books I was suprised to find out the vivid accounts of Darryl Young, and his accounts of war in Vietnam. I also enjoyed his boot camp stories. Especially the one where they cheated and sat up on the hill and waited for everyone else to arrive. But when they went across the finish line, the course had been changed. So they got in a lot of trouble with their DIs. I enjoyed his writings of the silent waiting. I also enjoyed his writings of his accounts with the VC and NVA. I would reccomend this book to anyone who is interested in the SEALs and their role in the Vietnam war.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Special Forces BS Lite 21 July 2013
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
I really enjoyed this refreshingly honest and readable account of one SEAL's time in the Delta. Young's description of 'normal' missions ranks amongst the best I have read.
He does'nt dress his book up bigging himself (or colleagues) up and clearly has a high degree of respect for his enemies.
I have no hesitation in recommending this book if you have an interest in the theatre, period or just fancy a grown up war memoir.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Author Darryl Young takes you from day one. His time in Nam is documented and tranformed into a story that is easy to understand and relate to. This book blew me away. Anyone with an interest in Nam would absolutley love it. It is a book I will keep forever!!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great account 5 April 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Written in plain language with a single dimensional perspective, this account of one mans war comes across as totally honest without unnecessary embellishment, personally I found this to be a great account.
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