Firsthand accounts

  • World War II Magazine

    In the Eye of the Tempest

    After narrowly surviving the Axis invasion of the Balkans in April 1941, New Zealander Haddon Donald and his men were evacuated to Crete. They soon found themselves at the dawn of a new era in warfare. The Germans had two goals when they...

  • World War II Magazine

    Crossing the Rubicon

    The thousands of young men who flew in the terror-filled skies over Nazi-occupied Europe laid the foundation for American air power well into the 21st century, all while confronting some of the most timeless questions in the history of...

  • World War II Magazine

    Scorched Survivor Arizona’s Fiery Demise

    Badly burned in the blast that killed more than a thousand of his shipmates, Donald Stratton lives every day with the physical and mental scars left from the Day of Infamy. Bored with Depression-era life in a small Nebraska town, Donald...

  • MHQ Magazine

    Return to Arnhem

    A British Airborne Corps intelligence officer raised serious questions about Operation Market-Garden, but was dismissed days before the invasion failed. The province of Gelderland lies at the southeastern edge of Holland, on the German...

  • MHQ Magazine

    Experience of War: ‘I Have Never Seen As Much Suffering’

    The Duchy of Warsaw was overflowing with troops in June 1812. For more than a year, French and allied troops had been gathering along the Vistula River and on the Baltic coast in preparation for Napoleon’s invasion of Russia. An...

  • MHQ Magazine

    MHQ Book Review: Time at War

    Time at War Nicholas Mosley, (Weidenfield and Nicolson, 2006), 185 pages, $29.50. Nick Mosley is an unusual Englishman, and he fought an especially English war in Italy, 1943-45. His father was Sir Oswald Mosley, leader of the British...

  • Vietnam Magazine

    They’re ‘loggie toads’ until you need bullets – then they’re life savers

    The adventures of U.S. Army ammo officer and the legacy of a 19th century British quartermaster  Many articles and books about the Vietnam War, and other wars, understandably emphasize the feats of frontline fighting troops. While...

  • Aviation History Magazine

    The F-14 Tomcat Sharpens Its Claws at Topgun

    A former Topgun instructor describes a typical combat training mission during his time at the Navy Fighter Weapons School. In September 1982 I was one of eight students being briefed in a classroom at the Navy Fighter Weapons School at...

  • Vietnam Magazine

    A Combat Medic Remembers Tet

    Reconnaissance aircraft had spotted a strong Viet Cong force dug in and ready to defend a weapons cache near Saigon. Our unit’s mission was to destroy it. A couple of days after the start of the 1968 Tet Offensive, my company climbed...

  • George Dooley

    17 Years In Vietnam

    From Nam Dong in 1964, to Tet 1968, to the 1972 Easter Offensive, Gerald Hickey got involved in it all—and he wasn’t even a soldier. When Gerald C. Hickey went to Vietnam in 1956 with the RAND corporation, he had no idea that he would...

  • Vietnam Magazine

    The CIA’s Costly Mistake

    In November 1967, Joe Hovey tried to warn the Johnson administration about the Tet Offensive—but his CIA superiors said he was crying wolf. Unlike great statesmen, military leaders, diplomats or openly declared swashbuckling intelligence...

  • Vietnam Magazine

    First days of the Tet Offensive for the 459th Signal Battalion

    Activated at Morris Field in Charlotte, N.C., on August 10, 1942, the 459th Signal Construction Battalion was com- posed of “colored troops,” to use vernacular of the time, and commanded by white officers. The unit served a year of...

  • Vietnam Magazine

    First Stop To Vietnam, The Induction Center

    As the Greyhound bus neared the terminal, my pulse quickened. Regardless of how I wished to appear, 18 and naive were written all over me. My trip last year to Candlestick Park had given me big-city exposure. How different could Oakland...

  • Vietnam Magazine

    Interview: An Adviser Takes Command

    During the fight for Landing Zone Pat in August 1967, Colonel Raymond Bluhm’s company earned the Valorous Unit Citation. Raymond K. Bluhm Jr. extended his tour of duty in Vietnam once, and would have done so again if not for a very close...

  • Vietnam Magazine

    Birds vs Cong

    A one-minute delay helped the 191st Assault Helicopter Company annihilate a massive ground assault. The first light of December 13, 1967, hinted at a gorgeous day. Wisps of fog drifted up from jungle streambeds as the night dampness began...

  • Vietnam Magazine

    3rd Tactical Dispensary Volunteers

    It was 1967 and I was a medical supply sergeant with the 3rd Tactical Dispensary, stationed at Bien Hoa Air Base near Saigon. Our facility had only six beds and a small medical staff. We took care of the minor illnesses and injuries of...