"IN THE EYE OF THE STORM"

 

The Number One Best Seller - August 1996

 

Major General Patrick Cordingley commanded the 7th Armoured Brigade Group - the Desert Rats - during the first Gulf War. In The Eye Of The Storm tells of his experiences from the moment he heard of the deployment of his command to Saudi Arabia through to their withdrawal after victory, six months later. Great Britain had not sent an armoured formation of such size and complexity to war since 1945. Patrick explains how the difficulties of sustaining such a large force in unfamiliar terrain were overcome, how they trained and how they coped with the strain of waiting for the signal to attack and the near certainty that chemical weapons would be used.

 

Writing vividly about the stark realities of the ground war, the author describes the frightening, exhilarating and exhausting struggle as his troops covered an incredible distance in record time, using high-tech weaponry that had never been used in warfare before. Although essentially a personal story, he also raises some important questions about the conduct of war, about the gap between politics and practicality and above all, between reported 'fact' and reality.

 

A unique record in leadership, In The Eye Of The Storm is an exceptional memoir of the personal struggle of being in a position of high command at a crucial moment in history. It also reminds us that although Desert Storm was a brief campaign it was, like every other war, not without its humour as well as its miscalculations and, above all, its very human side.

 

A selection of reviews:

 

"A gripping account of what a tank leader feels, thinks and does in 60 hours of continuous combat, all the more arresting for the understatement with which it is told."

John Keegan in the Daily Telegraph

 

"Without a doubt, this book will become required reading for Sandhurst, Staff College and military historians as it is written by one of the most senior ground commanders since the Second World War."

Andy McNab in the Sunday Times

 

"Fascinating and frequently hilarious."

Despatches