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Press Release: The Fourth Star by David Cloud & Greg Jaffe

Press Release: The Fourth Star by David Cloud & Greg Jaffe

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4.11

(9)
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Masterfully written and richly reported, The Fourth Star ranges far beyond today's battlefields, evoking the Army's tumultuous history since Vietnam through these four captivating lives and ultimately revealing a fascinating irony: In an institution that prizes obedience, the most effective warriors are often those who dare to question the prevailing orthodoxy and in doing so redefine the American way of war.
Masterfully written and richly reported, The Fourth Star ranges far beyond today's battlefields, evoking the Army's tumultuous history since Vietnam through these four captivating lives and ultimately revealing a fascinating irony: In an institution that prizes obedience, the most effective warriors are often those who dare to question the prevailing orthodoxy and in doing so redefine the American way of war.

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Publish date: Oct 13, 2009
Added to Scribd: Oct 14, 2009
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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08/21/2013

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Courtney Greenhalgh212.782.8971;cgreenhalgh@randomhouse.com 
They were four exceptional soldiers, a new generation asked to save an army that had been hollowed out after Vietnam. They survived the military’s brutal winnowing to reach its topechelon. They became the Army’s most influential generals in the crucible of Iraq.
“This is the best book I have read on the military in a long time. It is a sparkling account of today’s U.S. Army 
 ─ 
a work of art that offers novelistic details but also carries the impact of well-reported fact. Ilearned something on nearly every page, and much of it astonished me.”
 ─ 
 Thomas E. Ricks,
New York Times 
bestselling author of 
Fiasco 
and
The Gamble 
“Must reading...A remarkably candid portrait of four colorful personalities that shows how the world'slargest corporation, the U.S. Army, molds its top leaders.”
 ─ 
Bing West, author of 
The Village 
,
No True Glory 
and
The Strongest Tribe 
 
“Impressively profiles four generals who have earned the fourth star…also deals a blow to any monolithic conception of the “military mind,” a balloon that cannot be deflated too often.”
 ─ 
Booklist 
 “Insightful…a perceptive look at intelligent, capable generals trying their best.”
 
 ─ 
Kirkus Reviews 
 In
 THE FOURTH STAR: Four Generals and the Epic Struggle for theFuture of the United States Army
 
(Crown; October 13, 2009)
, David Cloud andGreg Jaffe show how the American military elevates the best and brightest to power.Cloud, the newly appointed special assistant to the U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan(most recently the chief national security writer at Politico.com and formerly thePentagon correspondent for the
New York Times 
 ), and Jaffe, the Pentagoncorrespondent at the
Washington Post 
(who previously held the same position at the
Wall Street Journal 
 ),obtained full access to Iraq’s most influential generals as well as to their family members and subordinates. The result is a detailed portrait of these remarkable men and the U.S. Army that no newspaper or magazinearticle could capture and no book, until now, has attempted.
 THE FOURTH STAR 
follows:
 
General David Petraeus,
a driven soldier-scholar. Determined to reach the Army’s summitalmost since the day he entered West Point, he sometimes alienated peers with his ambition and

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robertp_400354 reviewed this
Rated 4/5
Acceptable look at the personalities and backgrounds of four senior US commanders. It is an interesting fact that the names of the four - for sure that of General George Petraeus - is as well known to Canadians who follow any news as the name of any senior Canadian politician other than the PM. This gives a sense of the clout these guys have, commanding Central Command or commanding missions overseas, or indeed running and developing the US Army at home. In a decade or two, no doubt one will hope to see comparable books about Chinese four stars.The book itself is workable. A couple journalists with some but not extensive understanding of the US Army have spent some time getting "under the skin" of these generals. It is well written but left me a bit underwhelmed, like something was missing and not all the dots were connected.A number of commonalities struck me from this comparison of four senior American generals. First, they are the product of the melting pot. Not many of the families were tenth generation American families. Second, while obviously ambitious and thrusting - for how else could they reach the top of their profession - all four retained or thought they retained which is the same thing, strong ties to the young soldiers they started their careers with. Finally, most of them did a pretty fair job of intellectually challenging their profession from the inside. They weren't really, except maybe Casey, architypicipal organization men.A book worth reading for its topicality, but I so wish it were longer and deeper.
Sajjad A Mandloo added this note
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