The Proud: Inside the Marine Corps

Bernard Halsband Cohen, Author, Barney Cohen, Author
Bernard Halsband Cohen, Author, Barney Cohen, Author William Morrow & Company $22 (282p) ISBN 978-0-688-11737-5
Paperback - 978-0-688-13222-4
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Always last in line among armed services at the federal funding trough, the Marines do more with less than any other branch of the services, Cohen maintains, and yet they have had to fight for their very existence since being established by Congress in 1798. In a colorful study Cohen ( Sting: Every Breath He Takes ) explains this irony, analyzing also the special place that the Corps holds in the American psyche. The format is straightforward: Cohen introduces and closely observes several representative Marines--commanders, a Parris Island (S.C.) drill instructor, a helicopter pilot, an infantry squad leader, a recruiting sergeant and others. One particularly moving section describes the celebration of the Nov. 10 anniversary of the Marines' founding; another tellingly chronicles how Marines adapted the M-16 assault rifle to meet their own exacting standards. Gaffes in the historical overview (three in a single paragraph about the Changjin Chosin reservoir stet spellings and lc reservoir per Ency Brit/eed campaign of the Korean War) can be excused in that Cohen so ably captures the Corps' elusive character. Photos. (Nov.)
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