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am 4. Juli 2000
This book does not fit into the usual Tom Clancy Jack Ryan/John Clark series. It is rather a "What If?" story that hypothesizes on how WWIII would have unfolded in Europe between NATO and the Warsaw Pact.
Due to an internal terrorist act by Muslim fundamentalists, the Soviet Union needs to find new sources of oil. The Politburo decides to invade the Persian Gulf area and seize the oil fields there. But they are afraid the U.S. would be able to marshal the resources to stop such an assault. So the decision is made to "distract" the U.S. and NATO by launching an invasion of Western Europe.
The action takes place mostly in Washington D.C., Iceland and the North Atlantic, Germany, and Moscow. Clancy brings his usual attention to detail to this work. The strategy and tactics used by each side, if not textbook, are certainly believable.
If you enjoy "What If?" fiction or Clancy's work in general, buy this book.
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am 9. März 2000
_Red Storm Rising_ is undoubtably Tom Clancy's finest book. It depicts an all-out war between NATO and the Warsaw Pact in the mid-'80s. While the political reasoning behind the Soviet invasion is a bit far-fetched, the description of modern-day land, sea, and air combat is riveting. In contrast to some of the one-dimensional characters in Clancy's other work, this book features two unforgettable ones: Lieutenant Mike Edwards, codenamed "Doghouse", an unlikely hero who leads a squad of Marines trapped in Soviet-occupied territory, and General "Pasha" Alekseyev, who commands the Red Army with brilliance and courage in spite of his own mixed feelings.
If you like Clancy's other books, you will love this one. And if you have found some of his more recent stuff to be tedious and overly political, give _Red Storm Rising_ a try so you can see him at his best. My mom and I have very different literary tastes, but even she really enjoyed it after I convinced her to give it a shot.
_Red Storm Rising_ has no rivals in its description of modern naval combat. And only _Red Army_, by Ralph Peters, surpasses its incredible look at World War III on the ground. I just purchased the hardcover version to replaced my overused paperback. Its a classic that will be enjoyed by readers of all tastes.
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am 3. Juni 2000
There are some CD's that always seem to make their way back into your CD player, no matter how many times you've listened to them, or how many other CD's you've bought since. The same is true of books - there are some books that you periodicaly have the urge to reread because they're that good - sometimes, you'll just pick it up after remembering a favorite bit and wanting to reread just that part. Dune by Frank Herbert is such a book, and so is Tom Clancy's Red Storm Rising.
In all of Clancy's other books, he's at his best when he's describing actual combat. What sets Red Storm Rising apart from the rest of his books, I think, is that he's depicting actual combat during virtually the entire 700+ pages. Just as importantly, though, is that the story portrayed in RSR, and the characters contained within, are more sophisticated and better developed than their counterparts in most of Clancy's other books.
In Red Storm Rising, we follow several major characters - a U.S. army sargeant in command of an M1 main battle tank in Germany, a stealth fighter pilot, the Soviet general who is second in command of their army, the General's aide who is the son of a politburo member and thus very important to his general, Bob Tolland, a US Naval intellegence officer who is ultimately responsible for the US learning the true reasons for the Russions starting the war, Dan McCaffrey, captain of the attack sub USS Chicago, Lieutenant Edwards, a U.S. Air Force meteorologist who is trapped in Iceland when the Soviets invade and becomes a covert spotter for the alies monitoring Soviet activities there, and a US firgate captain who has his first ship torpedoed out from under him and must some how cope with the loss and regain his confidence so that he can command effectively again.
In the context of the year 2000, 14 years or so after this book was written, RSR stands the test of time with two caveats. First, the book was written before the US acknowledged the existince of the F-117 stealth fighter, and so Clancy refers to the F-19 (as it was speculated to have been called before this) and assigns attributes to the F-19 reminiscent of popular speculation before the F-117 was announced. Second, of course, is the colapse of the eastern block and with it the day to day reality of the cold war, which sort of destroys the premise of the book to a degree. None the less, in every other way Red Storm Rising is a classic, and IMHO probably Clancy's best.
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am 14. Juni 1998
I first read this book back in 1990, as I had to describe it in french class. I was hooked on Clancy from then on. Since then I've read practically all of his other books, as well as others on the military theme, but when all is said and done, none contain as much realism, clarity, sense and technicality as RSR.
Of course Clancy has his faults, his later books, although being excellent, do appear quite "soap-operaish", each character is "the best in his field" and "all-American" to such an extent that he seems unaware to the fact that other strong military forces exist. eg UK, France etc. Yet RSR does show that it's not only the USA and Soviet Union that would fight WW3.
The many small stories that take place around the world makes the book easier to read; they all culminate together in the end to create an overall story which tends to end rather confusingly. There is no big moment of victory, but more a confusion as to when the war ended. The Gulf war was similar, if you remember, there's so much destruction and devastation that nobody is really jubilant, but when the harsh reality of war's aftermath sets in, there's more of a relief that it's over. This book is like that.
I loved the way each chapter, and section within began with the date and location, meaning that there wasn't any confusion as to what was happening.
Of course today you have to read the book as though it is (and was) set in the late eighties. We know today that the Cold War is over, we didn't then. The F-19 wasn't brought into service, but rather the F-117. Warfare techniques today have even come along in leaps and bounds, so that if RSR was written today, there would be noticeable differences. It belongs in the eighties, but that's not a bad thing. Most of us can still relate to the feeling back then about the West and East.
RSR summed this up perfectly.
After all this time, I must have read RSR at least seven times, and each time I see something I missed before. It's not as ! if we didn't know the ending, it's more about how we get there, this is why it can be read over and over.
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am 26. Juli 2007
Let me make it clear that I am reviewing both the hard cover version of this book and the abridged audio cassette version. For long action novels, I often find the condensed version on an audio cassette preferable to the original. Red Storm Rising is the exception. The novel is much better and more enjoyable than the abridgement. This is also my favorite of the Tom Clancy novels, being slightly better than The Hunt for Red October in its story line and realistic plot details.

The book opens with a terrorist attack that cripples the economy of the Soviet Union. The leadership there chooses to believe that the West will devour the Soviets during this period of vulnerability, and the party leaders choose to launch an invasion of Europe. The real objective is to neutralize NATO so that the Middle East can be seized as a source of oil. Think of this as the 1980s update of the Japanese thinking during the 1930s about the importance of having assured supplies of raw materials and energy.

During the Cold War, published articles often focused on three primary risks that had to be overcome:

(1) That a weakened Soviet Union would decide to launch an offensive war to gain resources that its economic system could not provide.

(2) That a threatened Soviet Union would launch a first-strike nuclear attack.

(3) That the KGB and the Soviet Army would abuse their power and use war against the West to gain even more influence.

With the passing of time, we now know that although these were all potential risks, they were low-probability ones. The Soviets were not nearly as strong as the press and our government led us to believe in the United States. Also, they were more frightened of war, if anything, than the West was.

When this book came out in the mid-1980s, it provided valuable perspectives about whether or not the Western high-technology capabilities could counter much of the manpower strength of the Soviet Union, and the likelihood that there were reasonable people who opposed war in both the Soviet Union and in the West. Both perspectives turned out to have a great deal of truth in them. But they came as refreshing boosts for everyone's hopes for peace at the time.

Since there no longer is a Soviet Union, nor a Cold War, why should you read this book? I think the best reason is to understand the importance of placing limits on the power of those who can set war in motion. Also, one's enemies can be deterred by the risk they run by attacking you as much as by a real attack, as long as the risks to them are known. So appropriate levels of strength create the potential for diplomats to do their work.

For those who like battle stories, this one is quite interesting as in develops along the lines of what conventional war in Europe might have looked like in the mid 1980s. Several of the scenarios, such as an attack by the Soviets on Iceland will intrigue you and change your perceptions of geo-politics.

The technology side of the story is even more compelling and interesting than in The Hunt for Red October. You will witness potential uses of many of the weapons and systems that proved to be very important during the Gulf War, such as Stealth fighters, cruise missiles, and AWACs controllers.

After you finish reading this story, I suspect it would be a useful thing to try to come up with ways that the Cold War could have been ended sooner. What were both sides missing? How could the mutual distrust and misunderstanding have been dispelled sooner? The resources that went into weapons that were never used (thank goodness!) could have been far better employed in other ways.

May the peaceful intentions of the peace-lovers always be apparent and encouraging to all!
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am 30. Januar 1999
RED STORM RISING was the first techno-thriller I read. It was while I was in high school some years ago and every techno-thriller I read is judged by that standard. After several years of reading that genre, however, I have noticed that there are numerous simularities between Red Storm and the many other NATO versus Warsaw Pact novels.
The most frequent convention and premise of these novels is that the Russian forces will achieve limited success in the opening stages of a campaign in Europe. As the battle goes on, however, NATO's assumed technological superiority will overcome the Soviet's material superiority and carry the day, although by a narrow margin.
I would like to ask Mr. Clancy and the others who subscribe to this theory to refresh their knowledge of history. In the Second World War the Germans had the best tank in the Tiger and the best planes with the invention of the jet. The Germans had a better machine gun in the MG 42. Many historians argue that the greatest factors that overcame the Germans was quantity of US equipment. This historical experience flies in the face of Tom Clancy's thinking in his novel and should give us all pause as we think about "what might have been". Quality is not necessarily a replacement for quantity.
I enjoyed reading Red Storm Rising, it is a well written and fast paced novel. The action is well developed, but if you are looking for character development, look elsewhere.
Even with my objection, it remains possibly the best written of its genre and the standard by which all others are judged.
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am 31. Mai 2000
Anyone that has ever read Tom Clancy but not read this book is tragically missing out. Anyone who enjoys war or adventure reading of any kind that hasn't read this one is also missing out. "Red Storm Rising" very well may be Tom Clancy's best work, as in a manner absent in many of his other books, it mixes the facets of politics, technology, strategy and riveting adventure and action into one superb piece. Depicting a bloody Soviet invasion of the west, the book never slows down its fast-paced nature as it depicts the war of attrition in Central Europe well while doing an unforgettable job in its telling of the naval war and Battle for Iceland that are occuring concurrently. Jumping from theatre to theatre, readers of most interests will likely find this book to be one of the more thriling and enthraling they may encounter, a component that is further enhanced by the absence of difficulty in the reading. This one doesn't have all of the hollow political babble that much of his new work has, but rather just focuses on an unforgettable original world war III portrayal that I am proud to say, has no rival.
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am 7. Juli 1998
I have read Tom Clancy's Red Storm Rising three times. This book is unmatched in its frightening realism and detail. Mr. Clancy's finest piece for all you Clancy fans out there. Red Storm is a large book, encompassing a theoretical world war III between the Soviet Union and the United States. Mr Clancy's extensive knowledge in the areas of submarine as well as political warfare have made this book into a gripping "what could have happened" senario. I recommend this piece of literature to anyone who enjoys reading military based or political based literature. The realism of Red Storm Rising will shock you and make you think of the cold war in a whole new light.
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am 13. April 1997
I already read the book three or four times and still find it fascinating. Clancy writes in great detail and shows a great knowledge of military technology. The story is GREAT!
Neverthelss there is a lack of knowledge on todays Germany and topography: Parts of the story like that about the spetznatz leader at the main post office in Aachen or the 'camping site' on the way to Lammersdorf show his knowledge to be 'only' from maps and don't work in reality. German police and military structures and titles described are from times BEFORE World War II.
So would you please keep in mind, that this book is fiction in many ways, detailed and exact and real as it might seem.
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am 25. Juni 1998
Hunt for Red October made him famous, but Red Storm Rising made Tom Clancy great. The novel is a fascinating scenario that revolves around a 1980s Soviet oil crisis that leads to World War Three. Like his first book there is a large amount of submarine scenes, but RSR goes on to include a detailed air war and ground battles. though some of the plot lines no longer ring true (the F-19), it is still easy to enjoy. The sudden end was odd and it took me a page to figure out what was going on in Moscow, but was satisfactory. I've read many Clancy novels since this book, but it still remains my favorite.
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