Horse Soldiers

Horse Soldiers

The Extraordinary Story of a Band of US Soldiers Who Rode to Victory in Afghanistan

By Doug Stanton

Scribner Book Company, Paperback, 9781416580522, 407pp.

Publication Date: May 11, 2010

From the "New York Times "bestselling author of "In Harm's Way" comes a true-life story of American soldiers overcoming great odds to achieve a stunning military victory.
"Horse Soldiers" is the dramatic account of a small band of Special Forces soldiers who secretly entered Afghanistan following 9/11 and rode to war on horses against the Taliban. Outnumbered forty to one, they pursued the enemy army across the mountainous Afghanistan terrain and, after a series of intense battles, captured the city of Mazar-i-Sharif, which was strategically essential to defeat their opponent throughout the country.
The bone-weary American soldiers were welcomed as liberators as they rode into the city, and the streets thronged with Afghans overjoyed that the Taliban regime had been overthrown.
Then the action took a wholly unexpected turn. During a surrender of six hundred Taliban troops, the Horse Soldiers were ambushed by the would-be POWs. Dangerously overpowered, they fought for their lives in the city's immense fortress, Qala-i-Janghi, or the House of War. At risk were the military gains of the entire campaign: if the soldiers perished or were captured, the entire effort to outmaneuver the Taliban was likely doomed.
Deeply researched and beautifully written, Stanton's account of the Americans' quest to liberate an oppressed people touches the mythic. The soldiers on horses combined ancient strategies of cavalry warfare with twenty-first-century aerial bombardment technology to perform a seemingly impossible feat. Moreover, their careful effort to win the hearts of local townspeople proved a valuable lesson for America's ongoing efforts in Afghanistan.

About the Author
A former contributing editor at Esquire and Outside, Doug Stanton is now a contributing editor at "Men's Journal". He received an M.F.A. from the Writers' Workshop at the University of Iowa. He is the author of "In Harm's Way: The Sinking of the U.S.S. Indianapolis and the Extraordinary Story of Its Survivors". He lives in Traverse City, Michigan.