Friday, November 27, 2015

AChainOfThunder

I recently read A Chain of Thunder by Jeff Shaara (2014).  The book is an historical novel, detailing the siege of Vicksburg, Mississippi, in 1863, by the Union Army under the command of General Ulysses S. Grant.  


A Chain of Thunder provides insight into the thinking, the tactical strategies, the key players, and the politics at play in 1863 as the Union Army struggled to control the vital shipping route of the Mississippi River, on which Vicksburg served as a critical Confederate stronghold.  

It is good for me to read novels of this nature as they remind me of the sacrifices made and hardships endured in the evolution of the United States.  As in all points in the history of mankind, leaders with flaws were/are called upon to act in extraordinary ways in the interest of the greater good.  Not always have such leaders met with success;  and, those efforts are often accompanied by egregious loss of life (innocent and otherwise) and property.  

To be sure, war is an ugly affair, its atrocities eclipsed only by the ugliness of capitulation to the forces of evil.  

I have read numerous books by JS (and his father, Michael Shaara) over the years.  All are compelling and well-written accounts of pivotal military campaigns in the history of the United States.  I’ll continue reading their works.  They inform me and cause me to reflect on the important things in life, both at the micro- and the macro-level.

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