My name is Spencer (formerly known as Dr. Paleo Ph.D.).
I am many things. I'm a 22-year-old, Bible-believing Christian. I trust my savior Jesus Christ above all else, and strive to follow Him unceasingly. My soul is that of the warrior's, and I seek to fulfill my duties as such. I am science-minded, and am pursuing a career in dinosaur paleontology.
I am for my God, and His Word, the Holy Bible. I am for the literal six-day interpretation of the Creation account as found in the book of Genesis. I am for my country and its military, and I will give my support to those who defend this nation and its people, even if it means that we are forced to wage war. I am for homeschooling, the rights of parents and the unborn, the Biblical family, and courtship. I am for the rights of gun owners, and believe in carrying. I am for martial arts, and advocate the study of those means necessary to protect the family, the faithful, and the defenseless. I am for the dying ways of chivalry; "Women and Children First!" is a creed well worth dying for. I am for conservatism, and did I mention that I'm also a states' rights Confederate flag-waving Rebel?
This is me.
Welcome to my blog.
"Captain, my religious belief teaches me to feel as safe in battle as in bed. God has fixed the time for my death. I do not concern myself about that, but to be always ready, no matter when it may overtake me. Captain, that is the way all men should live, and then all would be equally brave." --Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson
"God has fixed the time for my death. I do not concern myself about that, but to be always ready, no matter when it may overtake me. That is the way all men should live, and all would be equally brave." --Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson
"Duty is the sublimest word in our language. Do your duty in all things. You cannot do more. You should never wish to do less." --Robert E. Lee
"Here I stand. I can do no other. God help me. Amen.” --Martin Luther
"Never give in—-never, never, never, never, in nothing great or small, large or petty, never give in except to convictions of honour and good sense. Never yield to force; never yield to the apparently overwhelming might of the enemy." --Winston S. Churchill
"Look! There is Jackson standing like a stone wall! Let us determine to die here today and we will conquer! Rally behind the Virginians!" --Gen. Bernard E. Bee
I got this book from a gift card Christmas present almost two years ago...and just now got to reading it. For some reason I always go for short books first when reading; time, I guess. :-)
This book was very good; short and sweet. It's a quick read, as it's under 300 pages, the book is quite small anyways, and much of each page is left blank as they merely contain daily journal entries.
Set in Vietnam in '69/'70, Frank Johnson's personal diary was fascinating to me. It was a very interesting look into a 19-year-old's impressions of war. I won't pretend and say it's well written, has beautiful prose, or whatever. It's a diary, written by a 19-year-old soldier, and that's what you should expect, as that's what you get. Johnson served in the Army Rangers for most of the year he was in, doing the tough work of an LRRP (Long Range Reconnaissance Patrol). The LRRPs were small teams of men "infilled" in hostile territory with the intention of reconnaissance and often to make "contact" with the enemy. (As a note of interest, he kept this diary a secret as it was forbidden for LRRPs.) The book depicts the feel of war (and the LRRP aspect, with all the small engagements, narrow escapes, and risky run-ins) page-turningly. I thoroughly enjoyed Johnson's diary.
Some readers may find the constant slang and military terminology difficult, but the good glossary makes this of little consequence. Others may also be upset by the use of words such as "gunks" and "gunkies" in reference to the enemy, but I didn't mind. For one, it's what they did/do in war, and what would one have them say about the enemy? "Our dear friends, the venerable North Vietnamese and their honorable comrades the Viet Cong killed one of our buddies today." I see such a thing as less of a "racial slur" and more of a insulting word against a group of people (such as the enemy in this case). On the other hand, one can't contend that Johnson is a racist, as one of his best war buddies is Vietnamese. And in such situations, do you expect niceties?
On a similar note, there is foul language in the book (clearly to be expected), and some may also be turned off by the fact that a few sexual encounters are referred to in the book. Nothing explicit, just a few passing references, such as mentions of the author himself using Vietnamese prostitutes. A very sad fact, but a fact nonetheless. Again, this happens in war, what more do you want, a John Wayne movie?
Another "negative" which I saw more as a historical fact of interest is that you can see a bit of the lack of discipline in the Army at this time. The Vietnam War was the lowpoint as to such things, if my learning has done me well, and perhaps this was a symptom; I've never served, so I can't compare. (When I say "lack of discipline" I mean some of the things Johnson and/or others said or did to superior officers--though much of the time it seemed to be deserved if Johson's account is to be trusted, something I do not see as challenged--and things such as commandeering Army jeeps for impromptu R&R excursions, etc.)
As is usual in my "recommend" reviews, I sound more negative than I mean to be. One very positive aspect were the common references to God. Although Johson admitted not being overly religious, he commonly prayed, referred to God as watching over him and/or his comrades, and gave thanks to the Lord for safe results. Another satisfying theme was the brotherhood between some of the men.
What we have here in Johnson's book is a good first-hand account of a young man fighting a war as a good soldier. It's a rough book, but for guys like me, it don't matter. Recommended to the men, with reservations to the ladies.
P.S. Click on the title link: once you read the book the Amazon.com comments by the author himself and a "character" will be of interest.