The Brothers Bellum

Book Notes

Eddie sez:

The Vietnamese consider Linebacker II a victory. So do we. It hastened the end of the war, so I guess we were both right.

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Photo: The Brothers Bellum, cover
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The story follows three brothers during the build up, execution, and aftermath of the bombing campaign that the President said, “must be brutal.” It was.

While the brothers are fictional, the bombing missions and dysfunctional rules of engagement are portrayed exactly as they happened. The story takes you through the journey that almost ripped this family, and the nation, apart. Along the way you will learn about the actual events of how Linebacker II initially failed, and then succeeded in bringing an end to the Vietnam War.

Available now: Amazon.com.

Last revision:

2021-08-01

Cover story:

2021-08-01


By 1972, the United States had been openly fighting in Vietnam for nearly a decade and it wasn't going well. We had hundreds of Americans captured as prisoners of war, the death toll had been staggering, and there was no end in sight. President Nixon was up for election and no matter how that ended up, the pressure to end the war could not be ignored.

Early that year, Operation Linebacker saw B-52 bomber strikes in North Vietnam that scared the Strategic Air Command into becoming overly cautious. Many in the Air Force and in the Department of Defense suspected that SAC lacked the will (or capacity) to fight. The commander of SAC was replaced and given orders to commence Linebacker II. The President's orders were clear: "It must be brutal."

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Photo: B-52 approaching U-Tapao, 1972
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Photo: B-52 cockpit
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Stephen, the eldest brother, was a B-52 pilot who flew when the SAM threat was minimal. He had done well and was promoted to be a part of the SAC Operations Staff. He had complete faith in the bomber and the Strategic Air Command’s prosecution of Linebacker II, the last air campaign of the war.

Ernest, the middle brother, was a B-52 Electronic Warfare Officer stationed at U-Tapao Royal Thai Navy Base in Thailand. He had complete faith in the technology and his skill in avoiding the Surface to Air Missile (SAM) threat. He gets to put into practice all that he has learned just as Linebacker II commences.

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Photo: B-52D 55-0100 bombing Hanoi, Dec 1972
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Photo: Vietnam War protest
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Martin, the youngest brother, was a college student on draft deferment. As he neared graduation and the war continued to drag on, he realized that he would soon be conscripted into the Army. He came to believe the war was evil as were all who fought it.

Stephen believes the Strategic Air Command knows how to wage a conventional war and has a good plan in Operation Linebacker II. Ernest has faith in his electronic counter measures and his ability to keep his aircraft and crews safe from the SAM threat. Martin comes to believe there is no possible justification for the American involvement in Vietnam and that everything associated with it is evil. All three brothers discover they were wrong.

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Photo: North Vietnamese SA-2 Surface to Air Missile
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Photo: B-52, Andersen Air Force Base, Guam
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