The Line of Fire: From Washington to the Gulf, the Politics and Battles of the New Military

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9780671727031: The Line of Fire: From Washington to the Gulf, the Politics and Battles of the New Military

America's top military officer under Reagan traces his career, from Vietnam to the Gulf War, describes the world of the military in peace and war, and offers portraits of Reagan, Bush, and Gorbachev. 60,000 first printing. National ad/promo. Tour.

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From Kirkus Reviews:

The low-key memoirs of a retired admiral whose ascent to four- star rank owed more to his world-class skills as a statesman and technocrat than to time at sea. Crowe--General Colin Powell's predecessor as chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff--made the most of his opportunities during a productive career that lasted just a bit longer than the cold war. A 1946 graduate of Annapolis, the Oklahoma-born author served aboard diesel-fueled submarines before the first of many assignments to the Pentagon, where he was invariably an aide to senior officers holding down influential operations and/or planning posts. Crowe (who holds a doctorate in political science) finally saw some combat as an advisor to riverine forces toward the end of the Vietnam War, and he went on to top commands at NATO and in the Pacific, after which President Reagan named him to head the JCS. Not one to underrate his own contributions, he devotes roughly half his text--written with the assistance of Chanoff (coauthor, Portrait of the Enemy, 1986)--to the four eventful years he spent on this demanding job. Among other excitements on Crowe's watch, the Achille Lauro was hijacked; the US launched a reprisal raid against Qaddafi; and Washington agreed to convoy Kuwait's tanker fleet through the Persian Gulf. On the home front, Congress passed the Goldwater-Nichols Defense Reorganization Act of 1986, calculated to curb interservice rivalries and otherwise make the American military more efficient. Crowe refused President Bush's request to stay on, and he became a civilian in 1989, later attracting attention for his support of Bill Clinton's bid for the White House. An insider's illuminating, if tactful, appraisal of a defense establishment in transition, as well as of its varied constituencies and critics. (Eight pages of b&w photos--not seen) -- Copyright ©1993, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

From Publishers Weekly:

Though he was assigned fewer seagoing commands than most of his Navy brethren (and was "never a very 'military' individual"), Crowe's abilities in strategic planning, military-congressional politics and international relations were recognized early on by his superiors. He eventually served as chairman of the Joint Chiefs under presidents Reagan and Bush. Here he discusses his role in the military's biggest recent challenges, e.g., the downfall of Philippine president Ferdinand Marcos, confrontation with Libyan strongman Muammar Khaddafy, and the development of U.S. policy in the Persian Gulf. The admiral explains why he opposed the drive to implement the Star Wars program. Crowe makes perceptive, provocative and illuminating observations about the relationships between the Pentagon, Capitol Hill, the White House and the news media and clarifies how high-level military policy is made. His story of his warm but ultimately sorrowful friendship with Marshal Sergei Akhromeyev, his Soviet counterpart, will not soon be forgotten by readers. The Marshal, unable to cope with the fall of Communism, committed suicide. Photos.
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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