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The Operational History of MACVSOG
  • ISBN/SKU: 9781591143215
  • Binding: Hardcover & eBook
  • Era: 20th Century
  • Number of Pages: 320
  • Subject: Vietnam War
  • Date Available: September 2011
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BLACK OPS is also Availble as an Audio Edition from Audible via Amazon

Without doubt the most unique U.S. unit to participate in the Vietnam War, the Military Assistance Command, Vietnam Studies and Observations Group (MACVSOG) was a highly-classified, U.S. joint-service organization consisting of Army Special Forces, Navy SEALs, Marine Force Reconnaissance units, the Air Force, and the CIA. Committed to action in Southeast Asia even before the major U.S. build-up in 1965, it also fielded a division-sized element of South Vietnamese military personnel, indigenous Montagnards, ethnic Chinese Nungs, and Taiwanese pilots. During its nine-year existence, MACVSOG participated in most of the significant operations of the conflict, including the Gulf of Tonkin incident, the Tet Offensive, the incursion into Cambodia, the Green Beret murder case, the Phoenix program, and the Son Tay POW raid. The story of this extraordinary unit has never before been told in full and comes as a timely blueprint for today’s unconventional warfare.

Published in cooperation with the Association of the United States Army.

Robert M. Gillespie, a life-long student of military affairs, lives in Westminster, SC.

Praise for Black Ops, Vietnam

“…Well-researched, well-written history…It is highly recommended for military professionals and enthusiasts, as well as anyone studying the conflict, SOF, or counter-insurgency operations.”

Canadian Military Journal

“It is a well-documented, well-told account of a sad time in the nation’s history, when well-conducted Special Forces operations were laying the foundations for what would become a vital part of US operations in the current conflict in South Asia.”

Intelligencer: Journal of U.S. Intelligence Studies, Winter/Spring 2013

“…Exceptionally well-researched volume.”

Pacific Affairs, March 2013

“Robert M. Gillespie has done a fine job of capturing the larger history of this little understood part of the massive and long-term American effort in the Vietnam War. Black Ops Vietnam is recommended for anyone who wants to develop a wider knowledge of the Vietnam War from a full-theater perspective, or who wants a deeper understanding of the heritage of today’s Special Operations forces.”

— On Point, The Journal of Army History, Summer 2012

“Through his use of many declassified documents, memoirs and secondary sources, author Robert M. Gillespie provides a very detailed and highly readable account of U.S. special operations during the Vietnam War.”

Vietnam, June 2012

"Fascinating account...Gillespie's book is particulary timely in light of the ongoing fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan. It demonstrates the hazardous duty that SOG teams endure."

Military Heritage, December 2011

"Assembled from declassified documents and memoirs, Black Ops Vietnam is an in-depth focus on the deeds of this elite group, and its true stories are especially relevant amid today's problematic, complex, and difficult ongoing counter-insurgency operations. Highly recommended, especially for college library military history shelves."

The Midwest Book Review, November 2011

"This is a complete history of the MACVSOG unit and uses declassifed documents and memoirs to to detail its achievements, offering a full and involving survey for any military history collection strong in Vietnam operations."

California Bookwatch,  November 2011

Customer Reviews
1 Review
Average Customer Reviews
4.00 Stars
Black Ops, Vietnam
Monday, August 13, 2012
By: RADM John T. Natter, USN (Ret)
From personal first hand knowledge, the maritime portions are 99% correct.


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