Posted by : Robert Child Monday



Ben Milligan

Debut guest Bronze Star recipient, former Navy SEAL and author, Ben Milligan will kick things off.
Ben has just released By Water Beneath the Walls: The Rise of the Navy SEALS, which chronicles the rise of the Navy SEALs from unarmed frogmen to elite commandos. And who better to tell that story than one of their own. By Water Beneath the Walls is Ben's first book, and it is getting widespread praise.

"By Water Beneath the Walls is the SEAL book we needed. A deep dive into the SEALs' roots, it is written with style and insight that could come only from someone who is part of the community. Milligan uses razor-sharp analysis and masterful storytelling to leave us with a clear understanding of not only how the SEALs came into being, but, more important, why."—Kevin Maurer, #1 New York Times bestselling co-author of Lions of Kandahar and No Easy Day

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Colin Cahoon

Colin P. Cahoon is a writer of historical nonfiction and historically based fiction, a patent attorney, and former Army helicopter pilot. He grew up in the Mesilla Valley of New Mexico and earned his B.S. degree in Chemical Engineering at New Mexico State University, which he attended on an Army ROTC scholarship. Colin received his Regular Army commission in 1983 and graduated with honors from the aero scout track of flight school at Fort Rucker, Alabama in 1984. He served with distinction as an Aero Scout Platoon Leader in the 307th Attack Helicopter Battalion of the 7th Infantry Division, where he accumulated over 1000 hours of flight time in UH-1 and OH-58 helicopters.

His latest book is Mended Wings: The Vietnam War Experience Through the Eyes of Ten American Purple Heart Helicopter Pilots. Follow the lives of ten Purple Heart heroes as they relate the Vietnam War experience from the perspective of the helicopter cockpit. Get to know the generation of men who fought with pride, determination, skill, and courage only to be shunned when they brought their battered bodies and haunting memories home. Their fathers and uncles were heralded as the "greatest generation." Meet the forgotten generation.

Click below to listen to this episode on one of the major podcast platforms:


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Dr. Tony Brooks

After enlisting in the U.S. Army in 2003 at the age of 21, Dr. Tony Brooks attended and graduated from Infantry and Airborne school, followed by the four-week Ranger Indoctrination program, officially checking in to the 2nd Ranger Battalion in Fort Lewis, Washington, in September 2004. He deployed to eastern Afghanistan in April 2005, based at Bagram Airfield. His first mission was Operation Red Wings II. 

On June 28th, 2005, a four-man Navy SEAL reconnaissance team under Operation Red Wings was ambushed in northeastern Afghanistan—as depicted in the book and film Lone Survivor. A quick reaction force was dispatched. Turbine 33, carrying eight Navy SEALs and eight members of the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment, was struck by a rocket-propelled grenade—careening the dual-rotor Chinook toward the rugged peak of Sawtalo Sar. The result was the single deadliest incident in Special Operations history at the time.

Author Tony Brooks gives a first-hand account of the daring recovery of Turbine 33 and the subsequent search for the remaining compromised Navy SEAL recon team—one of whom was Marcus Luttrell, the lone survivor. The Rangers were up against lack of intel, treacherous terrain, violent weather, and an enemy that was raised to fight.


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Jared Frederick

Jared Frederick is the author of several books, including Dispatches of D-Day: A People's History of the Normandy Invasion. Before his current position as an instructor of history at Penn State Altoona, he served as a seasonal park ranger at Gettysburg National Military Park and Harpers Ferry National Historical Park. Frederick has appeared on C-SPAN, PBS, in numerous independent documentaries, and on Turner Classic Movies as a guest host. He has also received awards for his teaching skills and efforts on behalf of student veterans.

His latest book is Hang Tough: The WWII Letters and Artifacts of Major Dick Winters. Beneath this marble image of a reserved officer is the story of a common Pennsylvanian tested by the daily trials and tribulations of military duty. Dick Winters wartime correspondence with a pen pal and naval reservist, DeEtta Almon, paints an endearing portrait of life on both the home front and battlefront—capturing the humor, horror, and humility that defined a generation.  


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Major General Mari K. Eder

Mari K. Eder, retired commanding U.S. Army Major General, is a renowned speaker and author and a thought leader on strategic communication and leadership. General Eder has served as Director of Public Affairs at the George C. Marshall European Center for Security Studies and as an adjunct professor and lecturer in communications and public diplomacy at the NATO School and Sweden's International Training Command. 

She has authored an outstanding new book, The Girls Who Stepped Out of Line, which takes you inside the lives and experiences of 15 unknown women heroes from the Greatest Generation. These women served, fought, struggled, and made things happen during WWII—in and out of uniform. Theirs is a legacy destined to embolden generations of women to come.


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Bob Welch

Bob Welch co-author of Leave No Man Behind, is an award-winning columnist, speaker, and author whose 15 books are distinguished by heart, humor, and hope. A storyteller by nature, Welch mines much of his speaking fodder from his books and the nearly 2,000 columns he's written for The Register-Guard, Oregon's second-largest newspaper. He has twice won the National Society of Newspaper Columnists' highest award for writing.

Bob is the author of Easy Company Soldier: The Legendary Battles of a Sergeant from World War II's "Band of Brothers." His latest book is Saving My Enemy: How Two WWII Soldiers Fought Against Each Other and Later Forged a Friendship That Saved Their Lives. Don Malarkey grew up scrappy and happy in Astoria, Oregon—jumping off roofs, playing pranks, a free-range American. Fritz Engelbert's German boyhood couldn't have been more different. Regimented and indoctrinated by the Hitler Youth, he was introspective and a loner. Both men fought in the Battle of the Bulge, the horrific climax of World War II in Europe. A paratrooper in the U.S. Army, Malarkey served a longer continuous stretch on the bloody front lines than any man in Easy Company. Though he never killed an enemy soldier, Engelbert spent decades wracked by guilt over his participation in the Nazi war effort. On the sixtieth anniversary of the start of the Battle of the Bulge, these two survivors met. Malarkey was a celebrity featured in the HBO miniseries Band of Brothers, while Engelbert had passed the years in the obscurity of a remote German village. But both men were still scarred— haunted—by nightmares of war. And finally, after they met, they were able to save each other's lives.


Mitchell Yockelson

Mitchell Yockelson, recipient of the Army Historical Foundation’s Distinguished Writing Award, is an investigative archivist at the National Archives and Records Administration, as well as a former professor of military history at the United States Naval Academy. He currently teaches at Norwich University. One of America’s foremost experts on the First World War, he holds a doctorate from the Royal Military College of Science, Cranfield University, in the United Kingdom.  

On his episode we talk about his WWI book, Forty-Seven Days: How Pershing's Warriors Came of Age to Defeat the German Army in World War I. It has gotten glowing reviews including this one from Brad Meltzer.  “Get ready to dig into one of the wildest and deadliest battles in history. The beautifully researched Forty-Seven Days takes you right there and shows you all the minute details, from the pings of a bullet to Pershing’s confidence and fears.”—Brad Meltzer, New York Times bestselling author of The President’s Shadow.


Martin Dugard

Martin Dugard is the coauthor of the mega-million selling "Killing" series with Bill O'Reilly. He will be here to discuss his latest book, Taking Paris, which is the story of the dark days during World War II when Paris fell into German hands. As the Germans ruthlessly crushed all opposition, a patriotic band of Parisians known as the Resistance secretly rose to fight back. But these young men and women could not do it alone. Over 120,000 Parisians died under German occupation. Countless more were tortured in the city's Gestapo prisons and sent to death camps. The longer the Nazis held the city, the greater the danger its citizens faced. As the armies of America and Great Britain prepared to launch the greatest invasion in history, the Resistance spies risked all to ensure the Germans were defeated and Paris once again free. 

Martin and I will also discuss his the forthcoming 11th book in the Killing series coauthored with Bill O'Reilly. 


Tim Gray

Join me for a September 11th conversation with Tim Gray, founder, and president of the nonprofit World War II Foundation. The organization honors the legacy of the veterans and survivors of one of history’s most crucial periods by producing educational documentary films (29 to date) with several more in post-production). These documentaries air on television networks around the world via American Public Television. Each of their films range from 60 to 90 minutes in length. They make these documentaries available for free to educators, students, and the public. Their goal is to preserve these important stories for current and future generations.


Don Milne

From Louisville, Kentucky, Don Milne is the founder of the nonprofit initiative Stories Behind the Stars. A lifelong history buff, he started a blog after the 75th anniversary of Pearl Harbor in 2016 to honor individual and mostly forgotten World War II fallen by writing short obituaries about them. Over the next four years, his WW2 Fallen 100 blog resulted in more than 1,200 stories and was read more than 1.5 million times. More than 1,300 people involved in the Stories Behind the Stars project have written nearly 10,000 accounts, including every story of the fallen from one state (Utah) and stories about every D-Day soldier lost on the first day at Normandy.


Myke Cole

As a secu­rity con­tractor, gov­ern­ment civilian and mil­i­tary officer, Myke Cole’s career has run the gamut from Coun­tert­er­rorism to Cyber War­fare to Fed­eral Law Enforce­ment. He’s done three tours in Iraq and was recalled to serve during the Deep­water Horizon oil spill.

The Bronze Lie explores the Spartans' arms and armor, tactics and strategy, the personalities of commanders and the common soldiery alike. It looks at the major battles, with a special focus on previously under-publicized Spartan reverses that have been left largely unexamined. The result is a refreshingly honest and accurate account of Spartan warfare.


Dr. Allen C. Guelzo  (Part 1)

Preeminent Lincoln Prize-winning author, historian, and distinguished professor Dr. Allen Guelzo. Allen and I had worked together on projects stretching back to 2005 when he participated as one of the historians in the Lincoln and Lee at Antietam film, narrated by Ronald F. Maxwell. On the podcast episode, Allen and I will be discussing his forthcoming book, Robert E. Lee: A Life  (Knopf) which is releasing on September 28, 2021. The book is already receiving widespread praise.

"Deeply researched and elegantly written, this nuanced portrait captures Lee's ambiguous place in American history."  

—Publisher Weekly

"Allen C. Guelzo has written exactly what the nation urgently needs right now--an example of mature thinking about complex, flawed people who took difficult actions in contexts, not of their making or choosing. In today's blizzard of facile, overheated, and grandstanding judgments about the past, this unsentimental biography illustrates the intellectual responsibility that the present owes to the past."

—George F. Will

In this first part of a two-part episode we discuss Robert E. Lee's early life and the impact the absence of his father had on his life.


Dr. Allen C. Guelzo  (Part 2)

In part two, Allen and I discuss Lee's first command and how he was deeply underestimated by opposing Union generals after taking control of the Army of Northern Virginia in 1962. We also discuss his later years and his presidency at Washington College, later Washington and Lee College. 

Praise for Robert E. Lee: A Life:

"Allen C. Guelzo not only covers new ground with the incredible depth and breadth of his research, he does an exemplary job of showing how history should be written, keenly aware of historical context, contemporary values, and the space between them... Reading more histories like these would be a good start to dealing with our country’s racist past and the ways it permeates into the present day."

—Marissa Moss, New York Journal of Books

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