Lt. Gen. James Mattis Professional Reading

Lt. Gen. James Mattis (USMC) is known as one of the most accomplished commanders in recent history and as one of the finest Marines to walk this planet. He also is a dedicated reader, and credits some of his success in the middle east to studying the works of those who had gone before him. This list is assembled from this list of required reading for CENTCOM USMC officers (published by Small Wars Journal http://smallwarsjournal.com/blog/ltge...) and also from a personal email he sent (published by Business Insider http://www.businessinsider.com/viral-...). I can't find some of the books referenced in the latter source.
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85 books · 31 voters · list created August 29th, 2013 by Samuel Kordik (votes) .
143 likes · 
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Comments Showing 1-17 of 17 (17 new)

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message 1: by Randy (new)

Randy Kling looks like many good books to read except for the one by Karen Armstrong.....she makes excuses for the evil terrorist Muhammad who founded Islam.Namely his marrying of a 6 year old and having sex with her when she was 9.(Aisha was her name).The cutting off of the heads of up to 900 Jewish males including boys at the Battle of Trench,and than taking the women and girls as sex slaves.......Karen is an excuse maker rather than a fact finder.......Muslims want us to understand their religion,etc.But when we study it and come to different conclusions than them they are insulted....I suggest books by Brigette Gabriel,Robert Spencer,David Wood,etc.to understand Islam and Muhammad......Islamic State,etc.are following in the footsteps of Muhammad.......btw I know a Marine who served under Mattis.he spoke very,very highly of him...


message 2: by Amr (new)

Amr Mustafa Randy wrote: "looks like many good books to read except for the one by Karen Armstrong.....she makes excuses for the evil terrorist Muhammad who founded Islam.Namely his marrying of a 6 year old and having sex w..."

Please Randy, read about Islam and prophet Muhammed -peace be upon him- before you go on insulting. Reading won't hurt.


message 3: by Andy (new)

Andy Brown Meditations by Marcus Aurelius isn't even on here, which is one of his favorite books that he always kept with him.


message 4: by Glenn (new)

Glenn I really appreciate the work that went into collecting and posting this! Personally, I hope we can let the list author continue to curate this list as he confirms more of Mattis's recommendations/readings. It would be nice if we could turn off the Goodreads function of allowing other people to add to lists (without approval from the list author) for lists such as this.


message 5: by No (last edited Nov 25, 2016 09:57PM) (new)

No Political Amr wrote: "Please Randy, read about Islam and prophet Muhammed -peace be upon him- before you go on insulting. Reading won't hurt."


Amr, you must know that Muhammudd also raped his dead aunt before burying her. Your 'ideal man', muhammudd was nothing but a violent sexual pervert who unleashed a hell on earth with his invention of islam. As an example: in Islam's war against India, more than 100,000,000 non-muslims have been murdered by muslim in the past 1,000 years, as islam continues to seek conquest of this nation. Islam is a virus on Civilization that will either destroy Civilization or be destroyed; I hope that the later happens first.


message 6: by No (new)

No Political Andy wrote: "Meditations by Marcus Aurelius isn't even on here, which is one of his favorite books that he always kept with him."

Thank you for including this.


message 7: by Isaac (new)

Isaac Mounce Randy wrote: "looks like many good books to read except for the one by Karen Armstrong.....she makes excuses for the evil terrorist Muhammad who founded Islam.Namely his marrying of a 6 year old and having sex w..."

It's learning and understanding your enemy. Sun Tzu wrote, "Know the enemy, know yourself, and victory is never in doubt, not in a hundred battles," (The Art of War, Penguin Classics, pg 19)


message 8: by Jam (new)

Jam Glenn wrote: "I really appreciate the work that went into collecting and posting this! Personally, I hope we can let the list author continue to curate this list as he confirms more of Mattis's recommendations/r..."
What!?! So the lists created by Mattis (for example) can have other people add to it?!?


message 9: by Jam (new)

Jam Andy wrote: "Meditations by Marcus Aurelius isn't even on here, which is one of his favorite books that he always kept with him."

It is concerning that the authenticity of these lists may not be what we think they are. I approached this list as genuine (perhaps not complete) but am concerned that others may be adding non-Mattis books to it. Hope GoodReads can put this concern to rest, otherwise these lists are worthless to me.


message 10: by Maricarmen (new)

Maricarmen Beltran Andy wrote: "Meditations by Marcus Aurelius isn't even on here, which is one of his favorite books that he always kept with him."

Andy:
It is number 2 on this list right after Gates of Fire!!!


message 11: by Isaac (new)

Isaac Mounce Jam wrote: "Andy wrote: "Meditations by Marcus Aurelius isn't even on here, which is one of his favorite books that he always kept with him."

It is concerning that the authenticity of these lists may not be w..."


It was put there later.


message 12: by Jennifer (new)

Jennifer Relfe Randy wrote: "looks like many good books to read except for the one by Karen Armstrong.....she makes excuses for the evil terrorist Muhammad who founded Islam.Namely his marrying of a 6 year old and having sex w..."

you have apparently never read the old testament, have you? Plenty of sex crimes to be found there.


message 13: by Joe (new)

Joe I've just added 8 books which are listed in the email as published in Mattis' book, Call Sign Chaos. I wonder if I should just create a new list, one aligned with that book, rather than updating this one? I've never worked with Goodreads' "lists" so I'm unaware of common practices. Thoughts?


message 14: by Glenn (last edited Nov 15, 2019 07:35AM) (new)

Glenn Your idea of creating a parallel list is interesting. Individuals have added books (to my lists) that stray (sometimes really stray) from the focus. Since I don't know of a way a list author can curate lists (Goodreads experts chime in here), creating an "alignment" - focused list might draw some of those additions away a list that we want to represent only Mattis' recommendations.


message 15: by Joe (new)

Joe Glenn wrote: "Your idea of creating a parallel list is interesting. ..."
OK. I'll create a new list which is ONLY the books from the Mattis email as the email was published/rendered in Call Sign Chaos. And then I'll see if I can lock it down :) Thanks for the feedback.


message 16: by Glenn (last edited Nov 15, 2019 08:46AM) (new)

Glenn Well - I have to amend my previous comments on this list. I went back and reviewed the list of Mattis' favorite books published in "Task & Purpose" on April 02, 2017 ( https://taskandpurpose.com/30-books-m...). I've compared this to the Goodreads list. As of today (11/15/19) it appears that only 8 of the 30 "Mattis favorites" are included on the Goodreads list. There are 85 books on this list. Less than 10% were in the "Task & Purpose" Mattis list. Unless I'm mistaken the following are missing:

Alexander Hamilton by Ron Chernow (2004)
Before the First Shot Is Fired: How America Can Win Or Lose Off The Battlefield by Tony Zinni (2014)
Defeat into Victory by Viscount Slim (1956)
Dereliction of Duty: Lyndon Johnson, Robert McNamara, The Joint Chiefs of Staff, and the Lies that Led to Vietnam by H.R. McMaster (1997)
Diplomacy by Henry Kissinger (1994)
Duty: Memoirs of a Secretary at War by Robert Gates (2014)
For Country and Corps: The Life of General Oliver P. Smith by Gail Shisler (2009)
Just and Unjust Wars by Michael Walzer (1977)
Long Walk to Freedom by Nelson Mandela (1994)
March of Folly: From Troy to Vietnam by Barbara Tuchman (1984)
Military Innovation in the Interwar Period by Williamson Murray (1996)
My American Journey by Colin Powell (1995)
Rise and Fall of the Great Powers by Paul Kennedy (1987)
The Far Pavilions by M. M. Kaye (1978)
The Forgotten Soldier by Guy Sajer (1971)
The Future of Strategy by Colin Gray (2015)
The Greatest Raid of All by Lucas Phillips (1958)
The Guns of August by Barbara Tuchman (1962)
The Lessons of History by Will and Ariel Durant (1968)
The Rules of the Game by Andrew Gordon (1996)
War, Morality, and the Military Profession by Malham Wakin (1979)
World Order by Henry Kissinger (2014)

Perhaps some enterprising individual can add them.

This raises a number of transparency questions about Goodreads' lists. We need some clear graphic way to distinguish the items the list author added vs those added by various visitors.


message 17: by Glenn (last edited Nov 15, 2019 09:03AM) (new)

Glenn Joe wrote: "Glenn wrote: "Your idea of creating a parallel list is interesting. ..."
OK. I'll create a new list which is ONLY the books from the Mattis email as the email was published/rendered in Call Sign Ch..."


Your previous post prompted me to compare this list to one published in 2017 (above). I'll have to look up the Call Sign Chaos list & verify that it matches the one I referenced! Thx.


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