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No True Glory: A Frontline Account of the Battle for Fallujah
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No True Glory: A Frontline Account of the Battle for Fallujah

4.12  ·  Rating details ·  1,842 Ratings  ·  77 Reviews
"This is the face of war as only those who have fought it can describe it."–Senator John McCain

Fallujah: Iraq’s most dangerous city unexpectedly emerged as the major battleground of the Iraqi insurgency. For twenty months, one American battalion after another tried to quell the violence, culminating in a bloody, full-scale assault. Victory came at a terrible price: 151 Ame
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ebook, 400 pages
Published December 7th 2011 by Bantam (first published 2004)
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Mike
In “The Iliad” a warrior in the front ranks turned to his companions and said, “Let us win glory, for ourselves, or yield it to others.” For Greek warriors, there was no true glory if they were not remembered afterward in poem or song. There will be no true glory for our soldiers in Iraq until they are recognized not as victims, but as aggressive warriors. Stories of their bravery deserved to be recorded and read by the next generation. Unsung, the noblest deed will die.

Those stories are recorde
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Chrissy
Apr 28, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: military
This book was a good account of the battle for Fallujah. I enjoyed the fact that it mixed a look into the higher command and political aspects along with a look into the frontline men and events. In my opinion that is the ideal style because it gives you the context and reasons why everything is happening while also giving you an inside look into the "trenches" that humanizes the events. The maps and outline of people involved were useful references to go back to while reading. This was an easy ...more
James
Dec 12, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Adolescents and adults
Bing West served as a Marine officer in Vietnam, then moved on to journalism. Here he accompanied some Marine units during the battle of Falujah and offered both his day-to-day account of their experiences and his observations on the higher level political maneuverings that shaped the events they lived through.
Carol Storm
Feb 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of the best books ever written about Marines in combat. Captures the culture of the Corps in peace as well as in war. Provides background on Fallujah, the terrain, the culture, the history. A must read for serious students of modern history, the Iraq War, and the United States Marine Corps.
Pat
Mar 10, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was there for part of this battle (in 2004). This book details all the battles surrounding what was once the most dangerous city in Iraq.
Elijus Kniežauskas
Pradžioje lėta, nuobodi ir sunki, bet po to ciki piki
Mark
Jan 15, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: military, history
I picked this up at the National Museum of the Marine Corps near Quantico, VA last weekend.

A detailed and in-depth account of the Marine's experiences in Fallujah, Iraq in 2004. I loved the matter of fact style and the Marine's eye view that West uses to tell his story. Part personal narrative from the combatants point of view and part historical narrative of the military and civilian leaders, their decision making, and the operations as they unfolded. West is quite confident that his opinions a
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Frank
Jun 29, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Bing West gives a glimpse into Anbar province, Iraq as it was in 2003-2005, during 20 months of attempts to stop, or even slow, the violence in that region. The author served as a Marine in Vietnam and was Assistant Secretary if Defense in the Reagan years. He interviewed numerous soldiers and Marines to put together sometimes street by street accounts.

I was struck by the way that many smart folks tried plans to work the problem only to be held up, pulled back, and then forced forward by politi
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Jack Pando
Bing West explores the strategy and history that lead to Operation Phantom Fury, the Marines push to capture the city of Fallujah. It truly catches the many mistakes the U.S. Military and government made throughout the planning process. The first attempt was stalled by a long one-sided cease fire. To fix the violence the U.S. wanted to send in the Iraqi national guard, but no unit was ready for the fierce fighting in the city. Finally the military made a decision to send in the former Iraqi army ...more
Scott
Apr 23, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Extremely well told story of the Battle for Fallujah. The first and second battle for Fallujah, which took place in April 04 and November 04 respectively. Bing West puts you into battle with the Marines and tells numerous harrowing tales of frontline bravery and valor. Bing West also tells of the events that occurred behind the scenes and the causes and propellants of the battle and of the political alliances, betrayals and compromises that shaped the battle and caused it to be split up into two ...more
Tin Wee
Nov 24, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another book I was inspired to read after FIASCO. This book outlines the consequences of policy screw ups on the average frontline grunt, and how a war changed because warriors were not allowed to fight as they were meant to because of other policy concerns. The takeaway of this book for me is that the heroism of many of the marines has been overshadowed by the american media which chose to focus on the family tragedies of the deaths of the marines, instead of their heroism in the field. As with ...more
Erikhart Hart
Oct 15, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
No True Glory provides a concise account of both battles for the Iraqi city of Fallujah, in April 2004 and December of 2004 respectively. West is an excellent author for this subject matter, providing a description from both the personal and tactical Lance Corporal while relating the operational and strategic context between events on the ground and on the home front.

Unfortunately, aside from the heroic sacrifices and mastery of modern urban combat displayed by our Marine Corps, the lesson that
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Christina
Dec 17, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"...let slip the dogs of war." Bing West has his finger on the pulse of the Corps with this one. Some of my buddies were in the battle for Fallujah in '04 and have given this book their seal of approval. Doesn't get more authentic than that.
Max Andrew
May 17, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
5 stars- what more can I say. A powerful book.
Victoria Vane
Apr 10, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Research reading for SHARP SHOOTER. Excellent book.
Steve Woods
What a complete fuckup! From go to woe one would be forgiven, given the money they made out of Iraq, even if indirectly, that the whole deal was contrived for the financial benefit of Rumsfeld and Cheney. As though invasion without a plan other than the naive belief that they would be welcomed as liberators as they were in Europe in 1945, was not enough the whole situation was muddled further by several different chains of command between whom little love was lost, troops poorly equipped for the ...more
Marc Liebman
Nov 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a wonderful story about men who not only persevere against the enemy, but also their own government within whom the politicians are more interested in poll results and re-election than winning on the battlefield.

As a retired Naval Officer, what pissed me off the most about stories like this is that we could have taken Fallujah early in the war if we had allowed the people at the pointy edge of the sword to make decisions. And, while we would have taken casualties, it would have been noth
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Rose
Jun 03, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What an incredible book about Marine's in combat.
Jimmy
Jul 09, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is about the US military’s operation in Fallujah from the time the first troops were on the ground in that city and leading up to the Marines’ assault towards the end of 2004. There is so much that people don’t understand about the US military’s approach towards Fallujah and so many mistaken assumptions and factually incorrect claims of what the US military did. I think this book makes an important contribution towards understanding what happened.
I don’t think many people could write
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Scott
Mar 12, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Incredible what some people will do for the person to their left and right.
Michael Burnam-Fink
Nov 18, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: war, marines, 2013
The Battle of Fallujah was the intense fighting American forces have faced in the 21st century, a Marine battle to stand with Okinawa and Hue for a tenacious enemy and destruction unleashed. Bing West has admirably recorded the heroism of the Marines who went into Fallujah, and the context of the battle in Iraq in 2004. The book's image of a Marine Division astride a shattered city, ruefully shaking its head and saying "Look at what you made me do", is not the most objective take. That image, li ...more
Travis
Oct 08, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Good book for two reasons--

1) Explained bigger picture of Iraq war by using Fallujah as an example of how we managed both a military occupation and civil management (yes nation building but more details are included for such issues as infrastructure, politics, etc).

2) provided both tactical and strategical short story accounts. Large operations/missions were shorted into "page-turning" stories full of the who, what, when, where, why's... These stories were bloody and gory.

Overall, the book is a
...more
Gayle Francis Moffet
If you can get through this one quickly, more power to you. After an initial sprint through the first section courtesy of a long plane ride, I had to take No True Glory a chapter at a time and sometimes less. It's not just that there's a lot of technical information to take in regarding how operations were set up in Iraq. It's not just there was a lot of information to take in in terms of the social structure of Fallujah and how it impacted the fighting there. It's that Bing West does a wonderfu ...more
Brom Kim
May 08, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history
This is fine military and political history around the battle for Fallujah, Iraq. The application of Halberstadt's journalistic, big picture/little picture style, covering makes this a relatively easy, fascinating read.

One of the book's main points is that the Arab, US, and other international media coverage of events in the city were very poorly covered, as the city became very dangerous for all but insurgency-approved arab reporters after the killing and mutilation of the US Blackwater milita
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Clarke Wood
Dec 30, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a must read if you are looking for an eyewitness account of modern urban combat. The author does a good job of placing Fallujah in the context of the occupation of Iraq and the Blackwater incident that triggered the two battles. I found it quite interesting that the people pushing for an attack after the Bridge incident were the President and Iraq's civil authority. The marines on the ground had actually advocated for targeted arrests of known participants in the ambush, but were ordered ...more
Ray
Sep 22, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
From the book jacket:
"After four American contractors were brutally murdered, President Bush ordered an attack on the city–against the advice of the Marines. The assault sparked a political firestorm, and the Marines were forced to withdraw amid controversy and confusion–only to be ordered a second time to take a city that had become an inferno of hate and the lair of the archterrorist al-Zarqawi".

The book is based on interviews at every level, from senior policymakers to generals and soldiers a
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Amber
Dec 20, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: military
No True Glory is an in-depth account of the battle for Fallujah during the Iraq war. My brother left for his 1st tour in March '03 and I remember watching CNN every minute I wasn't at work, hoping to get an idea of what the war was like. Thankfully he wasn't in Fallujah, because I remember hearing that Fallujah had the worst of the insurgency.

No True Glory explains why Fallujah was such a troubled city, and how media and politics influenced the military decisions that were made in response to t
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Pete Nickeas
Great book. I was skeptical at first, thinking it may have been only an ode to the Marines that fought for Fallujah. I don't want to read propaganda or one-sided proclamations of American greatness.


This book told stories at ground level and infused chain of command information where relevant. The book detailed heroics and bravery of young men. What I questioned throughout the whole book ... to what end?

And, my read of the book was, it wasn't meant to say "we shouldn't have gone to Iraq." But r
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Kevin
Jul 19, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great book telling about our current conflict in Iraq from the perspective of someone there. Details the events that lead up to the assault on Fallujah. Describes the failed attempts at diplomacy, failed attempts at letting the Iraqi's police themselves, the increase in terrorist activities when Fallujah was left unchecked. Am reading this book along with listening to State of Denial on CD. State of Denial covers roughly the same period, however it treats the political scene in Washington, where ...more
Charles Blumberg
Aug 06, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Excellent account of the battle for Fallujah, house by house, block by block, street by street. It's the story of the courageous Marines that fought to control the city and the bureucrats and politians that screwed things up by holding the Marines back for a several month cease fire.

Good book for lessons to learned for the future including: (1) learning that the only way to win a war is to kill until the opposition accepts the terms of surrender rather than suffer more destruction (2) when send
...more
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Francis J. "Bing" West is an author and former Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs during the Reagan Administration. His 2004 book The March Up: Taking Baghdad with the First Marine Division, written with United States Marine Corps General Ray L. Smith,was awarded the Marine Corps Heritage Prize for non-fiction, as well as the Colby Award.
More about Francis J. West Jr....
“your next great read!” 0 likes
“The fierce fighting at Fallujah attested to the stalwart nature of the American soldier. In The Iliad a warrior in the front ranks turned to his companion and said, “Let us win glory for ourselves, or yield it to others.” For Greek warriors, there was no true glory if they were not remembered afterward in poem or in song. There will be no true glory for our soldiers in Iraq until they are recognized not as victims, but as aggressive warriors. Stories of their bravery deserved to be recorded and read by the next generation. Unsung, the noblest deed will die.” 0 likes
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