By John F. Antal
Throughout the Nineteen Sixties, programmed guideline used to be voguish in advertisement and institutional in addition to academic circles. Antal, a tremendous within the US military, makes a martial similar of this method the center piece of a gimmicky textual content thats as a lot handbook as novel. Following certain briefings at the Abrams tank and allied concerns, the writer introduces younger moment Lieutenant Sam Jaeger. published to the center East, the place the USA is engaged in wasteland battle with an unidentified foe, Jaeger is given command of an armor platoon thats a key point in a battalion adverse by way of a motorized rifle department. in the end, our heros outfit is assigned to assault antagonistic forces whose place is doubtful, and Jaeger needs to draft operational orders for his troops. At this element, Antals narrative starts to fragment, taking up the nature of a call tree. At a number of levels, readers needs to workout one of many numerous suggestions open to the rookie officer and continue to the sections disclosing the results in their joint determination. those that decide the proper passages in the course of the authors tactical thicket are rewarded through the intelligence that their offerings as proxies helped Jaeger win the day and earn a battlefield advertising to captain, plus a Silver famous person. against this, failure to teach initiative and to heed a superiors motive effects not just in suppositious loss of life or seize but additionally a call for participation to aim back. As Antal makes abundantly transparent in his twisty, hard-boiled plotlines, armed clash can turn out extraordinarily unforgiving of error. A professionally right bang-youre-dead workout whose attraction turns out constrained to armchair strategists, gaming buffs, and, in all likelihood, the Soldier of Fortune crowd. The didactic drill comprises life like maps, diagrams, tables, and line drawings all through.
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Extra info for Armor Attacks: The Tank Platoon - An Interactive Exercise in Small-Unit Tactics and Leadership
In “The Schoolmaster” the series seems to be responding to Schlesinger’s concerns that excessive personal freedom is as dangerous as excessive restraint (interestingly, one could read Griswold as a nasty version of the archetypal eastern elitist whose ideas shaped postwar government and society). The quintessential episode rendering Lucas as bedrock in the construction of frontier civilization is the two-part “The Wyoming Story” (directed by the film veteran Joseph H. Lewis), the show’s most poignant demonstration of the father-son bond as essential to frontier expansion.
Lucas is intimidated into throwing the match by the town bully and crime boss (Leif Erickson), who threatens to kill Mark if Lucas does not comply, setting up a central dilemma of many episodes— Mark is Lucas’s vulnerability, the promise of the continuation of his name and male authority in the frontier community. The title of the episode is a bit ambiguous, because Lucas competes with a hair-trigger Billy the Kid type (a very young Dennis Hopper just after his roles in Rebel Without a Cause  and Giant ) whose heart isn’t in his work; the Hopper character is bullied by a belligerent uncle who exploits the young man’s talent.
The evil of the show’s villains, especially in its early seasons, suggests a savagery and amorality foreshadowing the revisionist phase of the western. Not surprisingly, the show was among the more violent TV westerns, its gunplay slipping past censors because much of the action is centered ultimately on moral lessons, a device that justified a great deal of violence in television action-adventure shows of the period. Episodes of The Rifleman often contain prolonged treachery or sadism—against Lucas, Mark, Micah, or an innocent of the town—culminating in an explosion of Lucas’s rifle fury, a dramatic structure that would show up in Peckinpah’s films.
Armor Attacks: The Tank Platoon - An Interactive Exercise in Small-Unit Tactics and Leadership by John F. Antal