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Archive for the ‘Green Beret’ Category

Wow I slept in for 12 hours.  I guess I finally got over my jet lag a week later.  Here’s a review of one of the books I read during my trip.  I post this general history reading book review a little early than my usual Friday night and Saturday book reviews since I realize some might be looking for a good read for their travels for Thanksgiving whether on the road or air travels.

Doug Stanton. 12 Strong: The Declassified True Story of the Horse Soldiers.  New York, NY: Simon & Schuster, December 1st 2017. 432 pp.

5 out of 5

Purchase: Amazon

This book has been turned into a major motion picture.  Both the movie and the book tells us the story of a Special Forces A-Team entering into Afghanistan in the wake of the September 11th terrorist attack and their mission fighting the Taliban and Al Qaeda.  It is an incredible story and definitely an interesting book.

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Eric Blehm.  The Only Thing Worth Dying For: How Eleven Green Berets Forged a New Afghanistan  New York, NY: Harper, January 19th, 2010.  400 pp.

Rating: 5 out of 5

This is the story of a US Special Forces team called ODA 574 and their mission in sourthern Afghanistan in the early days of the US invasion after September 11th.  The author interviewed the survivors of the team, other military servicemembers who interacted with the team and also poured over official government documents.  Most amazing of all is the fact that the author got to interview Hamid Karzai himself, the president of Afghanistan whom at that time was little known.  This is the story of the tip of the spear of the US military bringing the war to the very home of the Taliban in Southern Afghanistan.

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Lord willing this week I want to write several posts on training pastors and leaders for the churches overseas especially in areas that are considered frontiers missions field.  For those interested you might also want to read my post from last year titled “.”

green berets illustration missions theological education

I appreciate blogger Dan Cartwright, a former Green Beret and career soldier.  I’m using an illustration from his world that I think is helpful in describing the need and means of bringing theological education to local national pastors in the context of frontiers missions.

US Special Forces (Green Berets) must not be confused with Special Operation Forces.  Here’s how Wikipedia describe the missions of US Special Forces (Green Beret):

The primary mission of the Army Special Forces is to train and lead unconventional warfare (UW) forces, or a clandestine guerrilla force in an occupied nation[citation needed]. The 10th Special Forces Group was the first deployed SF unit, intended to train and lead UW forces behind enemy lines in the event of a Warsaw Pact invasion of Western Europe[citation needed]. As the U.S. became involved in Southeast Asia, it was realized that specialists trained to lead guerrillas could also help defend against hostile guerrillas, so SF acquired the additional mission of Foreign Internal Defense (FID), working with Host Nation (HN) forces in a spectrum of counter-guerrilla activities from indirect support to combat command.[citation needed]

Special Forces personnel qualify both in advanced military skills and the regional languages and cultures of defined parts of the world. While they are best known for their unconventional warfare capabilities, they also undertake other missions that include direct action raids, peace operations, counter-proliferation, counter-drug advisory roles, and other strategic missions.[13]

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Note what I highlighted in bold from the quote above.  I think the great examples of the Green Berets that has bearing for our discussion is their ability to train other forces and being skillful in how they go about it.  I think in some sense this is analogous to how we in the West should bring theological education overseas in the context of frontiers mission fields or area that requires creative access.

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