Academic journal article Military Review

Rupert Red Two

Academic journal article Military Review

Rupert Red Two

Article excerpt

RUPERT RED TWO, Jack Broughton, Zenith Press, St. Paul, MN, 2007, 352 pages, $26.95.

How does one become a great leader, and what does that really mean? Jack Broughton provides superb examples of what it means to lead, and how one learns to lead. His bottom line: to be a great leader, pay attention to and learn from great examples. His perspective of leaders and leadership has little to do with rank, and a great deal to do with character. Although discussion of his combat experiences are numerous, the leadership lessons that stand out in the book have more to do with moral courage than with physical courage.

Broughton has been a personal hero of mine ever since I read Thud Ridge. Unlike his previous writing (Going Downtown was published in 1988), Rupert Red Two examines the periods before and after the Viet Nam conflict in some detail, from 1941 when he first entered the U.S. Military Academy, to the turn of the 21st century. The real meat of this book is the period from 1945 to about 1965. You don't have to be an aviation history buff to appreciate Broughton's personal, behindthe-scenes perspective on the rush to demobilize immediately after World War II, and the abysmal state of readiness for the Korean War. As a Thunderbird Leader from 1954 to 1957, and as an F-106 Squadron Commander on the northern tier of fighter interceptor bases at the height of the Cold War, Broughton amassed a personal treasure trove of experiences to draw from. …

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