For many centuries, the job of everyday soldiers, the “grunts,” was the same-“see the hill, take the hill.” But the combat role of today’s U.S. soldier has undergone a radical change. The recent revolution in the art of soldiering in America emphasizes a smaller, but more highly specialized and technologically equipped, armed force. Now, even everyday soldiers in America’s armed forces specialize in elite combat skills that use the very latest high-tech equipment.After basic training, many of today’s recruits continue advanced training in one of the new emerging combat specialties, such as urban, mountain and arctic warfare; amphibious, underwater and small boat operations; modern cavalry combat; sniping; military intelligence and psychological warfare; search and rescue procedures, and combat engineering.In lively and entertaining prose, military historian Sam Southworth describes these emerging combat specialties-as well as the training and equipment for each-that characterize America’s fighting force today.

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