Fire in the Streets
The Battle for Hue, Tet 1968
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FIRE IN THE STREETS
The Battle for Hue, Tet 1968
The Tet Offensive of January 1968 was the most important military campaign of the Vietnam War. The ancient capital city of Hue was a key objective of the surprise Communist offensive, but when the North Vietnamese launched their massive invasion of the city, instead of the general civilian uprising and easy victory they had hoped for, they were faced with a U.S.—South Vietnamese counterattack and a devastating battle of attrition. In the end, the battle for Hue was an unambiguous military and political victory for South Vietnam and the United States.
In Fire in the Streets, the dramatic battle narrative battle unfolds on an hour-by-hour. The focus is on the U.S. and South Vietnamese soldiers and Marines—from the top commanders down to the frontline infantrymen–and on the men and women who supported them. Eric Hammel expertly draws on first-hand accounts from the battle participants in this engrossing mixture of action and commentary.
In addition, Hammel examines the tremendous strain the surprise attack put on the South Vietnamese—U.S. alliance, the shocking brutality of the Communist “liberators,” and the lessons gained by U.S. Marines forced to wage battle in a city–a task for which they were utterly unprepared.
With access to rare documents from both North and South Vietnam and hundreds of hours of interviews, Hammel, in a highly readable style, has produced the only complete and authoritative account of this crucial landmark battle.
Critical Acclaim for Fire in the Streets
U.S. Naval Institute Proceeding says: “Startles the reader with the scale and intensity of action required to recapture Hue City . . . Hammel ‘s narrative style . . . bonds the reader to the subject [and] certainly to the participants.”
Military Magazine says: “[Fire in the Streets] is true military history at its finest. Hammel writes in a highly readable style that anyone would find a joy to read.”
Armor Magazine says: “The author has performed an outstanding job in reconstructing the details of the battle actions through extensive interviews with the people who fought the battle.”
Sea Power Magazine says: “A detailed and engrossing account . . . The extensive use of recollections of the U.S. and South Vietnamese front-line troops and commanders give immediacy and credibility to Hammel’s account of one of the war’s bloodiest battles . . .”
Library Journal says: “The gritty, detailed war scenes and compelling narrative that are the author’s trademarks are evident.”
Infantry Magazine says: “Written in a lively and readable style, it is the most complete and detailed account of this central action of the war. Highly recommended.”
Leatherneck Magazine says: “Hammel is at his best when he weaves the individual stories of pain, frustration, hope, and heroics of the multitude of players who were caught in the maelstrom of death and destruction that was Hue City in February 1968.”