A definitive history of the US Navy’s renowned special operations fighting force—“the most complete in-depth study of this fabled elite unit” (Library Journal).
The legend was forged in the fires of World War II, when special units of elite navy frogmen were entrusted with dangerous covert missions in the brutal global conflict. These Underwater Demolition Teams, as they were then called, soon became known for their toughness and fearlessness, and their remarkable ability to get the job—any job—done. Years later, the renamed US Navy SEALs (for Sea, Air, and Land) continued to be a wartime force to be reckoned with throughout the remainder of the twentieth century and into the twenty-first. They served as rangers and scouts in the jungles of Vietnam, answered the call to duty in Panama, Granada, and in Saddam Hussein’s Iraq, while developing into the very best of the best, the cream of America’s Special Forces crop.
Author Orr Kelly offers a rich and riveting history of the SEALs, covering their remarkable triumphs while not shying away from the scandals and controversies. An extraordinary portrait of extraordinary fighting men, Brave Men, Dark Waters shines a brilliant light into the darkest shadows of war, which is where the SEALs have operated for decades with awesome and deadly efficiency.
“The best work to date on the SEAL (acronym for ‘Sea, Air, Land’) unit, this well-written survey presents the unit’s history from its origins in the underwater demolition teams of WW II, through its Vietnam incarnation as a group of scouts and raiders, to its present status as an elite special-missions force.” —Publishers Weekly
“Full of life and provocative . . . Capture[s] the inside story of the men with the green faces—warts and all.” —L. W. Simmons, cdr. USN commanding officer, SEAL Team Five
“Kelly, a veteran defense correspondent, has written the most complete in-depth study of this fabled elite unit. Recommended.” —Library Journal
Orr Kelly is a veteran journalist and author. He covered the Pentagon, the Justice Department, and the intelligence beat, and served as a war correspondent in Vietnam during his time with U.S. News & World Report and the Washington Star. He has written four works of military history, two of which deal with the Navy SEALs. With his late wife, Mary Davies Kelly, he is the author of Dream’s End, a history of two of his ancestors and their Civil War odyssey.