An Ordinary Soldier: Afghanistan: A Ferocious Enemy. A Bloody Conflict. One Man's Impossible Mission
by Doug Beattie
On 11th September 2006 - exactly five years after the attacks on the Twin Towers - a modern day Rorke's Drift was played out in the town of Garmsir, ... Show synopsis On 11th September 2006 - exactly five years after the attacks on the Twin Towers - a modern day Rorke's Drift was played out in the town of Garmsir, known as the Taliban gateway to Helmand Province. 40-year-old Capt. Doug Beattie of the 1st Battalion Royal Irish Regiment was charged with the mission to help retake Garmsir from the Taliban. His commanders said it would take two days; it actually took two weeks of exhausting, bloody conflict in which at times he would be one of only three men up against a ferocious enemy in impossible conditions. His wife thought he had taken a desk job - instead he was leading from the front, fighting for his life, trying to stand firm against an overwhelming onslaught. For his repeated bravery Doug Beattie was decorated with the Military Cross. This thrilling, modern war story is alternately shocking, thoughtful, even humorous, but always unflinchingly candid. Beattie never shrinks from portraying the horrors of war and his role in them, but the maturity of voice and heartfelt honesty sets this book apart from other military memoirs.A N ORDINARY SOLDIER offers an extraordinary insight into the mission in Afghanistan and, crucially, the relationship between British troops and the Afghans they serve alongside. Above all, it's Beattie's personal story of being what he modestly calls 'an ordinary soldier' - someone who balances being a loving father and husband with that of fighting in the world's most hostile place. It demands to be read.