Men With a Mission: Trained, Vigilant, Confident
by Gordon George Smith (Goodreads Author)
Major Jack Roberts has been asked by Australia’s defense department to form an elite group of servicemen to complete certain tasks. He chooses three men of varying backgrounds: Bill, a Christian, Joe, a Jew and Emile,a Muslim. He chose men who showed they could work with a diverse group of people. They were also joined by Kim-Ly Ngo who became the fifth member of their team. Kim-Ly was the daughter of a Vietnamese farmer who was educated in France. She agreed to help them as long as what she did benefited her country. The men received secret training and they were tasked with seeking out corruption, criminal activity and human rights violations. They even provided assistance to refugees.
Their service begins around the time of the Vietnam war and follows the men, and their girlfriends (and wives) throughout the war and immediately after. Their efforts are recognized by the United Nations high commission for refugees and Australia Government. and the unit becomes a UN investigating unit collecting evidence of human rights violations.
It was evident while reading this book that the Author did a HUGE amount of research for this Novel. Having said that, I wish there was more blending of the facts with the characters and the story. At times I felt as if I were reading a nonfiction book and not a book of fiction. I believe over the time, the Author will master this. This book is educational and gives the reader a glimpse into some of the ways Australia was involved in the war, specifically in the helping of refuges and human rights violations. The book also provides the reader with insight as to some of the things taking place during the war – apart from fighting. Being American, I have only heard of America’s side of the Vietnam war, this book showed another perspective and another countries efforts.