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Soldier : The Autobiography

3.97 (89 ratings by Goodreads)
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Description

General Sir Mike Jackson's illustrious career in the British Army has spanned almost 45 years and all that time he has shown loyalty, courage and commitment to the British army whilst also being an undeniable media attraction. A man of substance where foreign policy is concerned, he has served in theatres from the Artic to the jungle but is perhaps best known for his role in charge of the British troops to end ethnic cleansing in Kosovo, for assembling the British ground component of the coalition that toppled the Taliban, for equipping and organising the army we dispatched to defeat in Iraq and for re-organising the British army with aplomb.His drive, enthusiasm and dominating personality were always popular with his soldiers and drove him right to the top of his profession. He may have been a general but he never stopped caring about the men and women in his charge, despite the politics. "Soldier: The Autobiography" exhibits all the qualities for which Jackson is admired; his professionalism, his honesty, his directness, his exuberance and his sense of humour. Most of all it gives a vivid sense of what modern soldiering entails.show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 528 pages
  • 126 x 192 x 36mm | 381.02g
  • Transworld Publishers Ltd
  • Corgi Books
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • Illustrations (chiefly col.), maps (some col.), ports. (some col.)
  • 0552156027
  • 9780552156028
  • 517,939

About Mike Jackson

General Sir Mike Jackson is the best known British General of modern times. He retired in the autumn of 2006 after almost 45 years of service in the British army finishing as its head as Chief of the General Staff.show more

Review quote

"Engagingly recounted with both intelligence and candour...General Jackson is a man of high principles, who on more than one occasion was prepared to lay his career on the line to defend [his] beliefs. In this highly readable and fascinating book, he speaks a great deal of good sense. More importantly, he is able to publicly voice his concerns for the future and defend the soldiers he clearly cares about" -- James Holland Sunday Telegraph "Utterly compelling...Jackson has provided a model of the modern military commander, media friendly, internationally minded and politically sensitive...Indispensable reading" -- Andro Linklater The Spectator "Insightful and valuable...In his account of his career, he has exposed the weaknesses and failures that led to the challenges facing our troops in Iraq and Afghanistan today" -- Michael Evans The Times "A very readable, personal account of a man who rose to the top of the army and gained a reputation for being a 'no-nonsense' commander" -- Richard Norton-Taylor The Guardian "His trademark blunt honesty and humour are to the fore in his autobiography...He has a very interesting story to tell...An engaging and honest account that would repay reading by all those who seek to understand the 21st century British army" The Independentshow more

Back cover copy

General Sir Mike Jackson is the best known British general of modern times. He retired in the autumn of 2006 after almost forty-five years' service in the British Army, finishing at its head as Chief of the General Staff. During that time he held every rank from officer cadet to four star general. He has served in theatres from the Arctic to the jungle, including three tours of duty in Northern Ireland. In the course of the latter he was present at two of the most notorious incidents of 'The Troubles': so-called 'Bloody Sunday' in 1972, and the Warrenpoint massacre of 1979. In 1999, as commander of KFOR, Jackson won acclaim for defying his superior officer, the American General Wesley Clark, and refusing to block the runways at Pristina Airfield in Kosovo. Fearing that a confrontation with the Russians might escalate, he told Clark: "I'm not going to start World War Three for you." On 11 September 2001 Jackson was Commander-in-Chief of UK Land Forces, and as such he was responsible for assembling the British ground component of the coalition that toppled the Taliban. He took over as head of the British Army seven weeks before the invasion of Iraq. Jackson's success stems from his outstanding leadership qualities matched by his forceful personality. His autobiography exhibits all the qualities for which he is admired: his professionalism, his honesty, his directness, his exuberance and his sense of humour. Most of all, it gives a vivid sense of what modern soldiering really entails.show more

Review Text

"His trademark blunt honesty and humour are to the fore in his autobiography...He has a very interesting story to tell...An engaging and honest account that would repay reading by all those who seek to understand the 21st century British army"show more

Rating details

89 ratings
3.97 out of 5 stars
5 27% (24)
4 46% (41)
3 26% (23)
2 0% (0)
1 1% (1)
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