Academic journal article Air & Space Power Journal

In the Shadow of Greatness: Voices of Leadership, Sacrifice, and Service from America's Longest War

Academic journal article Air & Space Power Journal

In the Shadow of Greatness: Voices of Leadership, Sacrifice, and Service from America's Longest War

Article excerpt

In the Shadow of Greatness: Voices of Leadership, Sacrifice, and Service from America's Longest War by US Naval Academy Class of 2002, edited by Joshua Welle, John Ennis, Katherine Kranz, and Graham Plaster. Naval Institute Press (http://www.usni.org/naval institutepress), 291 Wood Road, Annapolis, Maryland 21402, 2012, 264 pages, $29.95 (hardcover), ISBN 978-1-61251-138-2.

Grand strategy, the operational arts, tactics, and of course memoirs are all common ground for military books. In the Shadow of Greatness takes a different tack, relying on the personal stories of 33 graduates of the Naval Academy Class of 2002 and their experiences from their days at the academy, though deployments, and up to the present. Beginning with Induction Day, and in some cases the occurrences leading up to that momentous event, these former midshipmen recount the actions, trials, and tribulations that helped them develop as officers and leaders. The fact that each "story" is fairly short allows all 33 recollections, along with photos and introductions, to fit into this fairly compact book.

In the Shadow of Greatness becomes especially compelling during its recounting of activities after graduation, when the stories shift from the "Leadership Laboratory" to the fleet, and these new ensigns and second lieutenants begin to put theory into practice. Covering all aspects of Navy life, from air, sea, and ground to multiple career fields and experiences, the stories paint a vivid picture of a nation at war. …

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