Mogadishu Diaries Bloodlines 1992-1993

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Mogadishu Diaries Bloodlines is based on my personal experience as a US Marine peacekeeper during Operation Restore Hope from 9 December 1992 until 21 March 1993. One of my unit's most dangerous missions was the pursuit of a beloved and revered Somali warlord named Mohamed Farrah Aidid. This is my personal account...

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Published: Jan. 30, 2013
Words: 31,820
Language: English
ISBN: 9780989154819
About E. Clay

Never in a million years did I ever think I would become a writer, or that I would find it so fullfilling and rewarding. If the test of a true passion is the love of its drudgery, then I am certifiably hooked. The entire writing experience is a joy.

I created this webpage so you can follow my works and hear the latest news on my progress. I enjoy communicating with my readers and reviewers about my characters, my plots and most importanly my message. If you ask me a question, I will make every effort to respond in a timely manner.

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In this discussion video Roz & Marc talk about the riveting book Mogadishu Diaries. Roz helps sum the book up, while Mark shares insight from a former police officer's perspective.

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Reviews

Review by: Anthony O'Brian on Dec. 07, 2013 : star star star star star
Good book! Last 75% was GREAT! Very interesting. Makes me want more. I very much appreciate the enlightenment on some issues of Somalian politics and thought process. Highly recommended!
(reviewed within a week of purchase)

Review by: Christopher Eger on May 11, 2013 : star star star star star
Take yourself to 1992, and the region of the world known as the Horn of Africa. There you will find Somalia. This once peaceful country with a history that goes back to the biblical days has degenerated into open warfare, chaos, and anarchy, where whichever warlord has the most guns makes the rules. This is where the United States, working under UN resolutions, sweeps in to save the day and the new novel, Mogadishu Diaries Bloodlines dives into headfirst.

The author, Eddie Clay III, spent 21-years as a marine, and he writes what he knows. He served in Somalia during Operation Restore Hope/Continued Hope and he freely admits that portions of the fictional work are autobiographical. The book has the feeling that it was scratched into a green rite-in-the-rain will book with a skillcraft pen while the writer shaved with a K-bar. Don’t let the conversations involving chits and Space-A flights, or knowing the difference between S-1, J-3, CLP, or JP-5 trick you into not reaching for this novel. While Clay brings the Corps out in his writing, you do not have to have a bird, ball, and mudhook on your shoulder to easily understand the tale.

Clay's hero is US Marine Corps Gunnery Sergeant Thompson, referred to in the work primarily as "Gunny T,” an augmentee to the Security Company of the I MAF as it gets ready to deploy to Somalia. The character is a likeable single-father and career NCO who relates the tale in a first person narrative that, while limiting in sweep, gets the point across. Gunny T and his sidekick strategic corporal quickly end up on the wrong side of an arrogant and overbearing company commander--, which is told with such realism that it reads just like a conversation with any active duty member of the military.

Gunny T and company get their call to the Moog and find themselves in a world of anarchy, missed opportunities, military catch-22's, and the like that would seem to almost be dark comedy if it wasn’t for the underlying ring of truth to every interaction. Awkwardly trying to figure out the local culture, the hero has hits and misses in a one-man effort to win hearts and minds. As the work picks up pace, it runs into the inevitable combined arms land battle hinted to in the opening 'flash-forward' chapter that is told with great attention to realism that leaves the reader almost expecting to have to move piles of empty brass to turn the next page.

A quick read at just over 30,000 words, Diaries is borderline novella in length. This keeps character development to a minimum but with the first person narrative from the eyes of Gunny T, this is nearly inescapable. This makes the work a great novel for anyone interested in an oft forgotten military history told from a personal level, and is basic enough in its telling to be approachable to readers of a wide scope.

Bring your Kevlar.
(review of free book)

Review by: Christopher Eger on May 11, 2013 : star star star star star
Take yourself to 1992, and the region of the world known as the Horn of Africa. There you will find Somalia. This once peaceful country with a history that goes back to the biblical days has degenerated into open warfare, chaos, and anarchy, where whichever warlord has the most guns makes the rules. This is where the United States, working under UN resolutions, sweeps in to save the day and the new novel, Mogadishu Diaries Bloodlines dives into headfirst.

The author, Eddie Clay III, spent 21-years as a marine, and he writes what he knows. He served in Somalia during Operation Restore Hope/Continued Hope and he freely admits that portions of the fictional work are autobiographical. The book has the feeling that it was scratched into a green rite-in-the-rain will book with a skillcraft pen while the writer shaved with a K-bar. Don’t let the conversations involving chits and Space-A flights, or knowing the difference between S-1, J-3, CLP, or JP-5 trick you into not reaching for this novel. While Clay brings the Corps out in his writing, you do not have to have a bird, ball, and mudhook on your shoulder to easily understand the tale.

Clay's hero is US Marine Corps Gunnery Sergeant Thompson, referred to in the work primarily as "Gunny T,” an augmentee to the Security Company of the I MAF as it gets ready to deploy to Somalia. The character is a likeable single-father and career NCO who relates the tale in a first person narrative that, while limiting in sweep, gets the point across. Gunny T and his sidekick strategic corporal quickly end up on the wrong side of an arrogant and overbearing company commander--, which is told with such realism that it reads just like a conversation with any active duty member of the military.

Gunny T and company get their call to the Moog and find themselves in a world of anarchy, missed opportunities, military catch-22's, and the like that would seem to almost be dark comedy if it wasn’t for the underlying ring of truth to every interaction. Awkwardly trying to figure out the local culture, the hero has hits and misses in a one-man effort to win hearts and minds. As the work picks up pace, it runs into the inevitable combined arms land battle hinted to in the opening 'flash-forward' chapter that is told with great attention to realism that leaves the reader almost expecting to have to move piles of empty brass to turn the next page.

A quick read at just over 30,000 words, Diaries is borderline novella in length. This keeps character development to a minimum but with the first person narrative from the eyes of Gunny T, this is nearly inescapable. This makes the work a great novel for anyone interested in an oft forgotten military history told from a personal level, and is basic enough in its telling to be approachable to readers of a wide scope.

Bring your Kevlar.
(review of free book)

Review by: Christopher Eger on May 11, 2013 : star star star star star
Take yourself to 1992, and the region of the world known as the Horn of Africa. There you will find Somalia. This once peaceful country with a history that goes back to the biblical days has degenerated into open warfare, chaos, and anarchy, where whichever warlord has the most guns makes the rules. This is where the United States, working under UN resolutions, sweeps in to save the day and the new novel, Mogadishu Diaries Bloodlines dives into headfirst.

The author, Eddie Clay III, spent 21-years as a marine, and he writes what he knows. He served in Somalia during Operation Restore Hope/Continued Hope and he freely admits that portions of the fictional work are autobiographical. The book has the feeling that it was scratched into a green rite-in-the-rain will book with a skillcraft pen while the writer shaved with a K-bar. Don’t let the conversations involving chits and Space-A flights, or knowing the difference between S-1, J-3, CLP, or JP-5 trick you into not reaching for this novel. While Clay brings the Corps out in his writing, you do not have to have a bird, ball, and mudhook on your shoulder to easily understand the tale.

Clay's hero is US Marine Corps Gunnery Sergeant Thompson, referred to in the work primarily as "Gunny T,” an augmentee to the Security Company of the I MAF as it gets ready to deploy to Somalia. The character is a likeable single-father and career NCO who relates the tale in a first person narrative that, while limiting in sweep, gets the point across. Gunny T and his sidekick strategic corporal quickly end up on the wrong side of an arrogant and overbearing company commander--, which is told with such realism that it reads just like a conversation with any active duty member of the military.

Gunny T and company get their call to the Moog and find themselves in a world of anarchy, missed opportunities, military catch-22's, and the like that would seem to almost be dark comedy if it wasn’t for the underlying ring of truth to every interaction. Awkwardly trying to figure out the local culture, the hero has hits and misses in a one-man effort to win hearts and minds. As the work picks up pace, it runs into the inevitable combined arms land battle hinted to in the opening 'flash-forward' chapter that is told with great attention to realism that leaves the reader almost expecting to have to move piles of empty brass to turn the next page.

A quick read at just over 30,000 words, Diaries is borderline novella in length. This keeps character development to a minimum but with the first person narrative from the eyes of Gunny T, this is nearly inescapable. This makes the work a great novel for anyone interested in an oft forgotten military history told from a personal level, and is basic enough in its telling to be approachable to readers of a wide scope.

Bring your Kevlar.
(review of free book)

Review by: Christopher Eger on May 11, 2013 : (no rating)
Take yourself to 1992, and the region of the world known as the Horn of Africa. There you will find Somalia. This once peaceful country with a history that goes back to the biblical days has degenerated into open warfare, chaos, and anarchy, where whichever warlord has the most guns makes the rules. This is where the United States, working under UN resolutions, sweeps in to save the day and the new novel, Mogadishu Diaries Bloodlines dives into headfirst.

The author, Eddie Clay III, spent 21-years as a marine, and he writes what he knows. He served in Somalia during Operation Restore Hope/Continued Hope and he freely admits that portions of the fictional work are autobiographical. The book has the feeling that it was scratched into a green rite-in-the-rain will book with a skillcraft pen while the writer shaved with a K-bar. Don’t let the conversations involving chits and Space-A flights, or knowing the difference between S-1, J-3, CLP, or JP-5 trick you into not reaching for this novel. While Clay brings the Corps out in his writing, you do not have to have a bird, ball, and mudhook on your shoulder to easily understand the tale.

Clay's hero is US Marine Corps Gunnery Sergeant Thompson, referred to in the work primarily as "Gunny T,” an augmentee to the Security Company of the I MAF as it gets ready to deploy to Somalia. The character is a likeable single-father and career NCO who relates the tale in a first person narrative that, while limiting in sweep, gets the point across. Gunny T and his sidekick strategic corporal quickly end up on the wrong side of an arrogant and overbearing company commander--, which is told with such realism that it reads just like a conversation with any active duty member of the military.

Gunny T and company get their call to the Moog and find themselves in a world of anarchy, missed opportunities, military catch-22's, and the like that would seem to almost be dark comedy if it wasn’t for the underlying ring of truth to every interaction. Awkwardly trying to figure out the local culture, the hero has hits and misses in a one-man effort to win hearts and minds. As the work picks up pace, it runs into the inevitable combined arms land battle hinted to in the opening 'flash-forward' chapter that is told with great attention to realism that leaves the reader almost expecting to have to move piles of empty brass to turn the next page.

A quick read at just over 30,000 words, Diaries is borderline novella in length. This keeps character development to a minimum but with the first person narrative from the eyes of Gunny T, this is nearly inescapable. This makes the work a great novel for anyone interested in an oft forgotten military history told from a personal level, and is basic enough in its telling to be approachable to readers of a wide scope.

Bring your Kevlar.
(review of free book)

Review by: Charles Kravetz on May 06, 2013 : star star star star star
This review is for the Kindle edition ebook.

Disclosure: I was offered a copy of this book by the author as a review copy.

Wow! A powerful, intense-filled story of Operation Restore Hope in Somalia.

This is the story of a soldier, who was a United States Marine, during the mission named Operation Restore Hope by the United States. It is factual, intense, historical, and more. This is also the story of an individual persons life.

Eddie Clay III states he wrote this book in 6 weeks. What he did not state is this is written with the emotions still present. I stand in awe of this author, he has given the reader a glimpse into what life in the military is like for many members of the military. It is not a glamorous, fun travel time. It really is difficult, friendships are made and lost. Problems do exist, and yes, emotions are difficult to control at times. I would prefer the fonts be uniform in the kindle format ebook. Throughout this book, the fonts seem to change almost every paragraph. This did not detract from my reading, most of the time.

I believe the author of this book was willing to give the reader a glimpse of military life and struggles. That was accomplished brilliantly in this story. The friendships made and lost, the feeling of joy and sorrow, the intensity of emotions are very real and heartfelt.

I would have to say thank you to the author for bringing this book to my attention. I can recommend this book to military history buffs and those who enjoy reading about epic battles for human rights. I would gladly grab any sequel to this book.
(review of free book)

Review by: Alba Moon on April 13, 2013 : (no rating)
Eddie Clay III’s book The Mogadishu Diaries: Bloodlines is a culturally sensitive and historically accurate account of one of the greatest humanitarian efforts in the 20th century: Operation Restore Hope. The memoir-based novel’s main character and first person narrator, Sergeant Thompson, gives the reader a succinct and insightful summary of the Somali situation before, during, and after his voluntary deployment to Somalia at the end of 1992 and the beginning of 1993. His story culminates in the 40-minute firefight during the US attack on the safe house of controversial warlord, Mohammed Farah Hassan Aidid on January 7, 1993. The incident was broadcasted around the world in form of pictures, videos, and news reports, which makes hearing the details from a first-hand source a real treat.

With an engaging style and suspenseful storyline, the author provides much more than faithfully recounting the events that unfolded in the January 7, 1993 night attack in Mogadishu, Somalia; he describes the emotions, thoughts, and doubts of a Marine caught in the crossfire of international political and military forces, including the fear, anger, the surge of adrenaline, and repeated self-evaluation only a warrior with crystal clear integrity would face. Whether familiar or unfamiliar with the events that resulted in the intervention of US-led Coalition Forces in Somalia, the reader will be thrilled to get the insider’s account about the beginning of a major political and military feat which started as a peace-keeping mission and ended up as a full-blown US military involvement for over four years, resulting in bloody battles that some sources compare to the Vietnam War.

Initially, the author’s use of military jargon and frequent abbreviations might be intimidating for civilian readers, but it enhances the authenticity of the account, and might offer more connections to readers with military background. Eddie Clay III portrays the life of Marines deployed on foreign land with vivid images and dramatic details. Beyond spine-tingling descriptions of life and death situations during patrols and battles, the reader also gets a comprehensive report about a Marine’s life in general, including hot issues such as gays in the military, marriage troubles exaggerated by deployment, internal conflicts of following orders, sex in camp, or latrine challenges of female Marines. A master of foreshadowing, the author provides suspense whether he writes about garrison life or imminent engagement in a firefight.

The only question mark that remains at the end of the story is related to the budding love affair of the narrator and a charming Somali interpreter. No complaints, though; it’s just one more reason to read the sequel.


Hedi Harrington
For Independent Professional Book Reviewers
www.bookreviewers.org
April 8, 2013
(review of free book)

Review by: Christopher Ackerman on Feb. 14, 2013 : (no rating)
Unfortunately the media and popular culture often depict United States Marines in a less than flattering light. Jarheads; leathernecks; devil dogs—these are just a few of the appellations unjustly applied to an elite group of soldiers who have sworn to serve and protect the citizens of this country. In his work Mogadishu Diaries 1992-1993: Bloodlines, ex-Marine Sergeant Eddie Clay III articulately describes his deployment in Somalia. It is a story written with wit and thoughtfulness; and one that debunks the names and negative stereotypes often associated with members of this branch of the armed services.

Knowing that Mogadishu, Somalia, has been listed as one of the most dangerous cities in the world, Gunnery Sergeant Thompson does something that defies reason: he volunteers to support the Marine Amphibious Force deployed in that region. He then makes it his mission to bring his friend—and the best sharpshooter on the base—Corporal Ramirez to the fray. In time both men find themselves fighting the forces of Somali warlord Mohamed Farrah Aidid; and even participating in one of the most critical operations of the entire campaign.

Yet their deployment in Somalia would not be free of drama. From the moment Thompson and Ramirez step foot on the base at Camp Pendleton (their point of departure), the two soldiers realize that as mere ‘augmentees’ (volunteer soldiers assigned to support another Marine unit) they will be treated as second-class citizens. That is, until they are given the opportunity to prove their “mettle.” However, the politics in play—and the prejudicial disdain shown towards them by one Captain Shaffner, and his protégé, Corporal Warren—will not make this an easy endeavor (or deployment). Through craft and impeccable performances both men indeed make names for themselves during their stay in Somalia; eventually leaving this foreign land with newfound friends, records of distinguished service, and many unforgettable memories.

After considering accounts of children being killed in combat situations, Thompson confesses: “When I saw kids on TV with their AK-47s, I knew I could possibly face my worst nightmare. I became worried that I might not react like others who could instinctively justify pulling the trigger.” This statement gives us an insight into the Sergeant’s attitude towards military service. Although desiring to defeat the enemy, he does not want to hurt innocent civilians in the process. He fears that at some point in the conflict he may inadvertently harm women and children; an act that would violate his conscious and contradict everything he—and the Marines—hope to achieve in Somalia. This thought haunts Thompson.

Contrary to being a hardened warrior (or a killing machine willing to achieve a military objective at any cost), Sergeant Thompson is extremely conscientious. This aspect of his personality makes him a humane person; and an excellent soldier. And in the context of the narrative, this character trait adds an element of mystery to the emerging plot: as we are left to wonder, and anticipate, how this complex man will act when placed in a morally ambiguous situation. As the tensions rise in the region, and the Sergeant becomes more aware of the possibility of civilian casualties, the scene is set for a brutal battle that will determine the fate of the Somali people and our protagonist.

The author’s writing style is incredibly clear and easy to follow. His prose flows in an ordered, succinct fashion; reflecting an organized thought process and a well-conceived artistic plan. While possessing qualities of a memoir, the realistic and detailed account of America’s recent involvement in Somalia reads more like a novel. Mogadishu Diaries 1992-1993: Bloodlines is an entertaining and historically significant work of fiction. I eagerly await the sequel to this fine story.

Christopher Ackerman
For Independent Professional Book Reviewers
www.bookreviewers.org
(review of free book)

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