I have a lot of regrets but I try not to focus on them. Every action has led me to where I am today with my beautiful wife and three amazing boys. However, there is one regret I think about more than the others — not serving my country.
In hanging out with two of my best buds, Rick and Mark, both of whom are veterans, I realize there are very few people with whom I share the same mindset. The same goes for when I do GORUCK events with special forces operators or in this case, read about Former Secretary or Defense Marine General Jim Mattis. I think I would have thrived in that environment. They think how I think. I also would have rather done more this great nation. I should have put my own life on the line for these freedoms we all take for granted and which at this time are just trampled on. I guess I will settle for trying to elect good people and getting laws passed that will strengthen America.
I loved this book mostly because I love the mindset of Mattis. Just read some of his most famous quotes:
“I come in peace. I didn’t bring artillery. But I’m pleading with you, with tears in my eyes: If you fuck with me, I’ll kill you all.”
‘Be polite, be professional, but have a plan to kill everybody you meet.”
“You go into Afghanistan, you got guys who slap women around for five years because they didn’t wear a veil. You know, guys like that ain’t got no manhood left anyway. So it’s a hell of a lot of fun to shoot them.”
And what has become a personal motto of mine:
“If you haven’t read hundreds of books, you are functionally illiterate, and you will be incompetent, because your personal experiences alone aren’t broad enough to sustain you.”
This book is marketed as a leadership book and there are a lot of lessons to be learned from it. However, this is much more of a history lesson on the Middle East conflicts under Presidents Bush, Obama and Trump. If you’re looking for a leadership book I recommend going with those of Jocko Willink. If you want to read about one badass American and his mindset toward life, pick this one up.