Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Book Sweepstakes - Naked in Da Nang

Looking for a good read as 2010 winds down? Well, lucky for you it's time for another book sweepstakes from Zenith Press...The Blog! 

For a limited time, visit our Contests/Sweepstakes page to enter to win one of three free copies of Mike Jackson's one-of-a-kind memoir Naked in Da Nang: A Forward Air Controller in Vietnam.

It's easy to enter and almost as easy to win!

Monday, October 25, 2010

From the Pages - Into the Viper's Nest

The Battle for Musa Qala is one of the single-most pivotal -- and deadly -- battles of the Afghan War to date. 

In the following exclusive excerpt from Into the Viper's Nest, author Stephen Grey details the harrowing opening salvos of the battle for the soldiers of 1 Fury -- the U.S. Army's elite 82nd Airborne paratroopers and the Afghan troops under their command.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
One Mile Southwest of Musa Qala, 0533 Hours
An American paratrooper stood in pitch darkness. He was catching his breath after a long march. As he smoked, he shielded the orange glow of his cigarette in the cup of his hands. He looked upward, and, as the tobacco burned down, the sky began to change. From the east came the dimmest of lights. One by one, the stars were snuffed out.

Then he heard in the wind the call to prayer. The words didn’t come from some loudspeaker. They were shouted in Arabic, as they had been for fifteen centuries, by a lone man standing on the roof of a town mosque.
Allahu Akbar
Ashhadu an la ilaha illa Allah
Ashadu anna Muhammadan Rasool Allah

God is Great
I bear witness that there is no god but Allah
I bear witness that Muhammad is the messenger of Allah
Rise up for prayer
Rise up for Salvation
Prayer is better than sleep
Allah is Great
There is no god but Allah
One hundred yards from the American soldier and his platoon, a group of young Afghan men shook away their thin blankets. They leaned their weapons on the side of a mud-brick compound and prostrated themselves toward the holy city of Mecca. Few of these men doubted God’s will that today would be the day of shaheed, of holy martyrs.

The paratroopers of 1 Fury had been marching through most of the night, slowed down by their unexpected arrival at a more distant landing site. The absence of a moon did not help. The night-vision goggles they used were high-tech, but they worked by amplifying the ambient light. On utterly dark nights like this, with no illumination but the stars, they had all the clarity of a poorly tuned television set. It all made for hard going as, laden with supplies, the paratroopers had trudged on foot through a series of rocky desert ravines.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Military Snapshot - Task Force Gladius in Afghanistan

Soldiers from Bravo Company, Special Troops Battalion, 82nd Airborne Division, Task Force Gladius wait for a CH-47 Chinook helicopter at the landing zone at Forward Operating Base Morales-Frazier on January 20, 2008. The Chinook will airlift them into the Surobi District of Afghanistan to protect another CH-47 that made a hard landing there. Department of Defense photo by Sgt. Johnny R. Aragon, U.S. Army, from Into the Viper's Nest: The First Pivotal Battle of the Afghan War by Stephen Grey.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Heart for the Fight sweepstakes winners!

Congratulations to our Heart for the Fight sweepstakes winners! The following entrants have won and author-signed copy of Brian Stann's inspiring new memoir:

• Paul Doerwang
• Chad Rhoades
• Robert Thomas
• Crystal Rainville
• Derek Phillipe
• Anthony Pope
• Peter Godin
• Monica Ness
• Nic Letresse
• Tony Fleming

Stay tuned to Zenith Press...The Blog and our Zenith Press Facebook Page for future sweepstakes and plenty of great information on new books from Zenith Press!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

WWII Special Ops Training Tip - Defending the Strangle-hold

Compiled from authentic documents originally issued by the British SOE and American OSS, Special Ops 1939-1945: A Manual of Cover Warfare and Training provides insight into the training and techniques of Allied agents operating behind enemy lines during World War II. Today's lesson: defending the strangle-hold.

You are seized by the throat as in Fig. 23.  

1. Seize your opponent's right elbow with your left hand from underneath, your thumb to the right.

2. Reach over his arms and seize his right wrist with your right hand (Fig. 24).

3. Apply pressure on his left arm with your right, at the same time with a circular upward motion of your left hand, force his elbow towards your right side. This will break his hold of your throat and put him off balance (Fig. 25).

4. Keeping a firm grip with both hands, turn rapidly towards your right-hand side bringing your right leg to your right rear. Follow with edge of hand blow on his elbow (Fig. 26).

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Military Snapshot - Himmler and the SS leadership

The SS leadership, decked out in their black uniforms and Totenkopf caps. Heinrich Himmler is in the center of the front row, with glasses and mustache. The tall man to his right is Kurt Daluege, chief of the Ordnungspolizei (regular German police force). At the far right of the front row is SS Gruppenfuhrer Josef "Sepp" Dietrich, who headed the Leibstandarte Adolf Hitler, the Fuhrer's bodyguard detail. Photo from Hitler's Master of the Dark Arts: Himmler's Black Knights and the Occult Origins of the SS by Bill Yenne.