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Four Flags, the Odyssey of a Professional Soldier : Rhodesian Security Forces 1979-80, South African
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Dave Barr knew from 12 years old he wanted to be a Marine. Following a series of menial jobs – including working at a shoe shiner in a barber’s shop and in service stations – at 17 he joined the Marines before shipping out to Vietnam. This was his dream come true – flying as a helicopter gunner – and he ended the war with an impressive 57 Air Medals, one Air Medal for every 20 combat missions. After leaving the Marines, like many veterans, Dave found it hard to hold down a good job and stay out of trouble. It was then that he read about Israel. Always looking for a rush, Dave learnt to skydive before deciding to take his chances – emigrating illegally to Israel. He was inducted into the Israeli Army and then the Paratroopers, where the training was difficult – involving long tough marches, as well as learning Hebrew. After serving his time, he left Israel – and back in the USA, Dave was stuck in a rut and ready for his next adventure. This is the second volume of Dave’s memoirs. Just as rich and colourful an account as the first instalment, the book portrays a professional soldier's view of the ‘sharp end’ of war. Following on from his time in the Israeli Army paratroopers, Dave travelled to Rhodesia and fought alongside the Rhodesian Light Infantry. His next assignment was with the South African Defence Force in operations in South West Africa and Angola. Then came the fateful day and near fatal injuries as a result of a land mine explosion. Almost a year later following 20 operations and Dave was finally allowed back onto active duty and doing what he did best, being a soldier.