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Boyd: The Fighter Pilot Who Changed the Art of War Paperback – 15 Apr 2004
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""Fascinating....An excellent book....Coram captures the dazzling diversity of John Boyd--fighter pilot, aerial tactician, engineer, and scholar."
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This book is a great read which takes the reader through the life of Colonel John Boyd, it is engaging, well written and never dull. The only time I put it down was to research texts that were referenced within the book. Never in a biography have I learnt so much about a much wider subject than this book. Great work Robert!!!!!!
Coram's narrative can slip into hyperbole to make a point, particularly when describing Boyd's confrontations with 'the orthodoxy', be they his peers, superiors or a monolithic service [Navy, Army, Marines or Air Force]. However, this style does encourage you to identify with Col Boyd and understand why his unconventional approach allied with his sheer determination was so necessary to question dogma and unchallanged assumptions. You live Col Boyd's struggle to develop a mathmatical formula [the EM theory] to allow a comparative assessment of a fighter aircraft and how this was extrapolated to become a theory of manoeuvre applicable through the strategic, operational and tactical levels of warfare. There is a price for this innovation and it was his family; it is clear Col Boyd was a singularly driven man.
Any military professional must read this book as it provides an ideal means to understand the development of the Manoeuvrist Approach in the modern Western context. I have a few criticisims; source referencing could be better and there really should be wider selection of photographs. Finally, alot of detail is invested in the the EM theory, the F-X and LWF that a explanatory diagrams would of added value in illustrating core points, but these do not detract from an engaging biography.
A very good incite into American military politics from ground floor to the top.
So many emotions of how one feels towards Boyd change through the book.
What a very interesting piece of history.
A really good read.
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