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Never Mind, We'll Do It Ourselves: The Inside Story of How a Team of Renegades Broke Rules, Shattered Barriers, and Launched a Drone Warfare Revolution Hardcover – January 26, 2021
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Never Mind, We'll Do It Ourselves is the character-driven story behind the origins of the Predator drone program and the dawn of unmanned warfare. A firsthand account told by an Air Force team leader and a CIA team leader, Never Mind, We'll Do It Ourselves takes the reader into the back offices and secret government hangars where the robotic revolution went from a mad scientist idea to a pivotal part of global air power.
The story will reveal the often conflicting perspectives between the defense and intelligence communities and put you inside places like the CIA's counterterrorism center on the morning of 9/11. Through the eyes of the men and women who lived it, you will experience the hunt for Osama Bin Laden and the evolution of a program from passive surveillance to the complex hunter-killers that hang above the battlespace like ghosts. Poised at the junction between The Right Stuff and The Bourne Identity, Never Mind, We'll Do It Ourselves will document the way a group of cowboys, rogues, and bandits broke rules and defied convention to change the shape of modern warfare.
"Never Mind We'll Do It Ourselves will give every American confidence that 'the right stuff' still exists in the DNA of our intelligence and military professionals. Their boldness, ingenuity, courage, and commitment changed the face of warfare forever and saved countless lives in the process. As a wartime commander, I will always be in their debt."—Admiral William H. McRaven, U.S. Navy (Retired) former Commander of the U.S. Special Operations Command
“What a stunning, fine read is Never Mind We'll Do It Ourselves! Alec Bierbauer, Col. Mark Cooter, and Michael Marks tell the real story behind the birth of US drones, armed and dangerous, in the dawn of the War on Terror. The first shot came in October of 2001 when the World Trade Center was still smoldering in ruins. This is not about high-ranking poohbahs taking courageous decisions. It is about guys with nicknames: Boom Boom, The Man With Two Brains, Joker, Albert. How they used velcro and duct tape to wire together control systems and Hellfire Missiles strapped below Predator Drones, the Lawnmower Machine. Read it! Enjoy it! Learn from it!”—Joseph L. Galloway, coauthor, We Were Soldiers Once . . . And Young, We Are Soldiers Still, They Were Soldiers, and Triumph Without Victory: A History of the Persian Gulf War
About the Author
Col. Mark Cooter (USAF, Ret.), a distinguished Air Force intelligence officer, has operational experience in DESERT STORM, the Balkans, Iraq, Afghanistan, and Libya operations. As a Predator squadron operations officer, Mark led Predator programs from their near inception in Bosnia through joint Air Force/CIA operations in Afghanistan and beyond. Col. Cooter lives in San Angelo, Texas.
Michael Marks has worked around the world within the US intelligence and special operations community, a career that stretches from the jungles of Nicaragua to the mountains of Afghanistan. A bestselling author, his books have been adopted by venues such as the FBI Academy and the Army Asymmetric Warfare Group. Marks resides in New York City.
- Publisher : Skyhorse; 1st edition (January 26, 2021)
- Language : English
- Hardcover : 376 pages
- ISBN-10 : 151072091X
- ISBN-13 : 978-1510720916
- Item Weight : 1.25 pounds
- Dimensions : 6 x 1.5 x 9 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #459,294 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
About the authors
Reviewed in the United States on February 4, 2021
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Never Mind, We’ll Do It Ourselves is one of those books -- and its all true, too. As I read it I felt like I was sitting at a bar with authors Bierbauer, Cooter and Marks, listening to the highs and lows, the bloopers and the highlight reel moments alike. I laughed in places (like “We got Earl”) and dabbed at my eyes when reading about Americans tragically lost on the battlefield.
This isn’t some dry textbook on how to build a drone. It isn’t the detailed history of unmanned flight or a study on policy and tactics. This book is a ticket to sit in a pilot seat inside a steel box, flying a missile-armed remote controlled plane on the far side of the planet. It is a chance to walk inside the hallways of CIA headquarters as the planes crashed on 9-11, or stand in the rain in the middle of the street when the bodies of those killed on the USS Cole drive by in hearse after hearse. (The protagonist got mad as hell, and you will too.)
It is a chance to meet the people on the front line of the creation of Predator as an armed platform and see how people in EVERY role found ways to bring their own special talents to the game in one of those “dream team” stories. After what has been a long drought of negative tone and bad news in the media, this book was uplifting, enlightening and entertaining. I highly recommend it!
This is an important piece of American history. Remotely piloted aircraft have shaped the way we fight for the last twenty years. Drones have created new opportunities and new challenges and two entirely new occupations within the Air Force. Drones are so important now that the Air Force trains more drone pilots than fighter pilots.
No one could tell this story better than the authors. It’s an incredible read written by two patriots that started a revolution that has disrupted the military and politics.
This book focuses on the period right before 9/11 and the years after that as this team figured out how to operate the Predator from across the world and then to arm it with Hellfire missiles. Despite equal parts of technical challenges and political challenges, they used every trick they had to "do it themselves", finally proving that drones could be an effective weapon from afar.
If you like true cloak-and-dagger stories, this book is a must. It's also a fascinating inside look at the future of war. Highly recommended