Where Men Win Glory: The Odyssey of Pat Tillman

Kobo ebook | September 15, 2009

byJon Krakauer

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This edition has been updated to reflect new developments and includes new material obtained through the Freedom of Information Act.

Pat Tillman walked away from a multimillion-dollar NFL contract to join the Army and became an icon of post-9/11 patriotism. When he was killed in Afghanistan two years later, a legend was born. But the real Pat Tillman was much more remarkable, and considerably more complicated than the public knew...

A stunning account of a remarkable young man's heroic life and death, from the bestselling author of Into the Wild, Into Thin Air, and Under the Banner of Heaven.


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This edition has been updated to reflect new developments and includes new material obtained through the Freedom of Information Act.Pat Tillman walked away from a multimillion-dollar NFL contract to join the Army and became an icon of post-9/11 patriotism. When he was killed in Afghanistan two years later, a legend was born. But the re...

Format:Kobo ebookPublished:September 15, 2009Publisher:Knopf Doubleday Publishing GroupLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:038552840X

ISBN - 13:9780385528405

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Reviews

Rated 5 out of 5 by from Good Impressive amount of detail. A very real and tragic story, which makes one wonder "is there a lot more behind White House doors that need revealing"? A great read, and a great "page~turner".
Date published: 2015-01-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Good Jon Krakauer did it again! This is an amazing book that'll keep you questioning everything right from the start. Pat Tillman has quite a story that can surprise most people like me. I don't have much of an interest in football but Tillman's change in character throughout the book really grasped my attention. Krakauer masterfully told the legacy of Pat Tillman for us to learn from.
Date published: 2013-09-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from The Hero Compared to His Bosses Everyone who has followed current events even slightly over the past five years knows that football hero and soldier Pat Tillman was killed in Afghanistan, and that the military had trouble telling the truth about his death from rifle fire by his own platoon. Tillman had a remarkable life for one who died at age 27, and in _Where Men Win Glory: The Odyssey of Pat Tillman_ (Doubleday), Jon Krakauer has provided the biography that Tillman deserves, vivid and compelling. As good as the biography is, however, it isn't Krakauer's main story, which concentrates on the political and moral crimes committed by the Bush administration and the Army as they tried to convince Americans (and Tillman's family) that Tillman had heroically died shot by Taliban soldiers instead of sadly, futilely dying from friendly fire. Krakauer has drawn his title from Homer, and within the book uses also an epigram by Aeschylus; this is not exaggeration. For one thing, Tillman, in addition to countless other interests, was compelled to study the Greek classics. More importantly, this is a brilliantly-told story of a genuine dramatic tragedy, because readers know how it is going to turn out, and watch as Tillman, compelled by his own sense of duty and self-challenge, is doomed by the fates and the powers that be. Tillman was an extraordinary character, and liked doing things his own way. He drove a Jeep, a car that had no flash, and he kept cats, not dogs. He was an ardent advocate for the rights of homosexuals, and he always had a book handy so that no time was wasted. He had brains, something that football players are not celebrated for, but more importantly, he was introspective and self-critical, constantly writing in his journal about any defects he saw in himself and what he would do to overcome them. (One of the most attractive parts of Krakauer's book is its generous quoting from the journals.) He was a standout as safety for the Arizona Cardinals, earning a fine reputation for playing a smart and aggressive game even though the Cardinals weren't much of a team otherwise. He had a $3.6 million dollar contract coming up, but after 9/11, walked away from it to sign on for the Army for three years. He thought about joining the officer corps, but wanted to be in the immediate action. The Bush administration saw the propaganda value of this young man so devoted to serving his country, but Tillman would not cooperate. He refused interviews and media appearances; he had his job and he wanted just to do it, and he faded into Army obscurity. When he was assigned to Afghanistan, it was not long before he was in the mission that resulted in his death. The mistakes that happened, compounded errors and misjudgments, might be excused as mere manifestations of the fog of war. What is inexcusable is how, after Tillman was shot three times in the head by an American machine gunner, the Army quickly sprang into action to cover up the friendly fire incident. Krakauer writes, "When Pat Tillman was killed in Afghanistan his Ranger regiment responded with a chorus of prevarication and disavowal. A cynical cover-up sanctioned at the highest levels of the government, followed by a series of inept official investigations, cast a cloud of bewilderment and shame over the tragedy, compounding the tragedy of Tillman's death." The military realized that it was going to have a problem keeping up the falsified version of Tillman's death, because his brother was in the same firefight at a different locale, and their buddies in the platoon knew the truth, and eventually at some point they would, even against orders, spill it. Tillman's mother pushed the issue, and got one after another official investigation, each of which lied in different degrees. Krakauer shows that the White House was eager to peddle the story of the hero as a counter to the revolting revelations from Abu Ghraib and to the increasing evidence that Iraq had no weapons of mass destruction. Krakauer's fine book is full of sadness; it is a shame this worthy man had to go to war, it is a shame that he had to die, it is a shame that his death was a terrible accident. Above all, it was a shame that his chain of command, top to bottom, lied to his country and to his family about his fate. Tillman insisted on pushing himself hard to do the right thing; the dishonest and craven actions of his Army chain of command and the Bush administration are in wretched contrast.
Date published: 2010-05-01