Not a Good Day to Die

Not a Good Day to Die

The Untold Story of Operation Anaconda

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Additional Formats
  • Ebook
  • ISBN 9781101204610
  • 448 Pages
  • Berkley
  • Adult


Award-winning combat reporter Sean Naylor reveals how close American forces came to disaster in Afghanistan against Al Qaida—after easily defeating the ragtag Taliban that had sheltered the terrorist organization behind the 9/11 attacks.

At dawn on March 2, 2002, over two hundred soldiers of the 101st Airborne and 10th Mountain Divisions flew into the mouth of a buzz saw in Afghanistan’s Shahikot Valley. Believing the war all but over, U.S. military leaders refused to commit the extra infantry, artillery, and attack helicopters required to fight the war’s biggest battle— a missed opportunity to crush hundreds of Al Qaida’s fighters and some of its most senior leaders.

Eyewitness Naylor vividly portrays the heroism of the young, untested soldiers, the fanaticism of their ferocious enemy, the mistakes that led to a hellish mountaintop firefight, and how thirteen American commandos embodied “Patton’s three principles of war”—audacity, audacity, and audacity—by creeping unseen over frozen mountains into the heart of an enemy stronghold to prevent a U.S. military catastrophe.


“If you liked Black Hawk Down, you’ll not be disappointed by Not a Good Day to Die… Extraordinary.” —New York Post

“Naylor has doggedly pursued the full story of Operation Anaconda from the time he was ‘embedded’ with 101st Airborne Division troops who fought in the battle… often against the wishes of [U.S.] commanders…an admirable job of exposing [Operation Anaconda’s] many shortcomings.” —The Washington Post

“The best full-scale history of Operation Anaconda to date.” —Booklist

“Excellent.” —The Cleveland Plain Dealer