RED PHOENIX BY LARRY BOND

Standard

tarzan

Kim Il-Jong the heir apparent to North Korea has devised a daring plan to reunite the Koreas. It starts with a highly placed agent in the South Korean government. This agent arranges a massacre by South Korean security personal on unarmed protesting students. What follows are economic sanctions and the planned withdrawal of all US military personnel.

A failed military coup further deteriorates the moral and fighting ability of the south. Just before Christmas the north launches Operation Red Phoenix the military conquest of the south. With lightning quickness the north advances and makes huge gains as the US/ROK try to organize a defense.

The book has a wide cast of characters but focuses on three. General McLaren the overall commander and his attempts to slow down the offensive and launch a successful counteroffensive. Second Lieutenant Kevin Little whose platoon is wiped out in the opening stages and must lead an ad hoc company. And Captain Tony Christopher an air force pilot of an F-16.

A daring plan of deception turns the tide of battle but the conflict threatens to drag in the Soviet Union and China for a much larger war.

This is the first book that I ever read by Larry Bond and fell in love with his style of writing. He is able to weave a large cast of realistic characters with real personalities and emotions. The scenario as written in the late 80’s and is highly plausible. The battles, tactics, political maneuvering and final outcome all come to a logical conclusion.

So as I write this some stuff has changed and some hasn’t. Obviously the Soviet Union is no more and the cold war tensions no longer exist. Korea is still a highly dangerous and unstable part of this world. North Korea isn’t a country, it’s a cult masquerading as a country. The third generation of this cult Kim Il-Tubby or whatever his name is has continued a belligerent policy to consolidate his power. Hopefully a second Korean War will stay fiction.

RED STORM RISING BY TOM CLANCY

Standard

tarzan

Three radical Moslems from Azerbaijan manage to destroy a major oil refinery in Siberia. The loss of this refinery will cut by 80% the oil production in the Soviet Union. Faced with this shortfall the Politburo decides it must seize the oil fields of Iran. To neutralize NATO they form a daring military plan called Red Storm. If involves a crash military buildup and fabricated dispute to knock West Germany out of the NATO alliance.

When the Soviets launch their attack they seize Iceland to prevent the resupply of NATO forces. What follows is the naval battle for control of the north Atlantic. NATO after some setbacks gains the upper hand and the world is brought to the brink of nuclear war.

This book mainly deals with the naval aspect of a hypothetical NATO-Warsaw Pact conflict. Larry Bond who was not credited as a co-author is a former Naval intelligence officer. He created the strategic naval simulation Harpoon which I spent much of my youth playing. The naval strategies and equipment are authentically portrayed and the story is exciting and fast paced. I thought it was a very plausible scenario that could have happened at the time.

Reading this book brought back memories of those days. It’s hard to believe that the Soviet Union no longer exists. That the world was divided into these two camps and nuclear annihilation was just a push button away.