The Only Thing Worth Dying For

How Eleven Green Berets Forged a New Afghanistan
Narrated by: P.J. Ochlan
Length: 12 hrs and 43 mins
Categories: History, Military
4.5 out of 5 stars (1,339 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

On a moonless night just weeks after September 11, 2001, U.S. Special Forces team ODA 574 infiltrates the mountains of southern Afghanistan with a seemingly impossible mission: to foment a tribal revolt and force the Taliban to surrender. Armed solely with the equipment they can carry on their backs, shockingly scant intelligence, and their mastery of guerrilla warfare, Captain Jason Amerine and his men have no choice but to trust their only ally: a little-known Pashtun statesman named Hamid Karzai who has returned from exile and is being hunted by the Taliban as he travels the countryside raising a militia.

The Only Thing Worth Dying For chronicles the most important mission in the early days of the Global War on Terror, when the men on the ground knew little about the enemy - and their commanders in Washington knew even less. With unprecedented access to surviving members of ODA 574, key war planners, and Karzai himself, award-winning author Eric Blehm cuts through the noise of politicians and high-level military officials to narrate, for the first time, a story of uncommon bravery and terrible sacrifice, intimately exposing the realities of unconventional warfare and nation-building in Afghanistan that continue to shape the region today.

©2010 Eric Blehm (P)2012 HarperCollins Publishers

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Great story about the rise of Karzai.

This is a great story about the rise of Karzai and how the U.S. special forces helped him to power. It's a bit of a different view of Karzai than what you may have read or seen on TV. Overall I enjoyed the story and the narrator.

11 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Ending is..... can't even put a word to it.

The story at times can be hard to follow and jump back and forth to different moments in time. This was not at all a deal breaker however because Blehm tells stories EXACTLY as they happened leaving nothing for the imagination neither pushing his opinion on you the reader. The last third of the book makes up for any jumping around and then finishes with a massive tragedy. He does these green berets a great justice by telling their story. Great book.

10 people found this helpful

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A great story that was also a lesson !

This book did a great job about telling the story of the war at the beginning of the engagement. The author told the story warts and all concerning his unit . This book is well worth your time & should be required reading in military circles!

7 people found this helpful

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The only thing worth dying for.

Where does The Only Thing Worth Dying For rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

I found this book very interesting. There was some interesting facts about the first troops in country. The ending was kind of abrupt. I thought it would have continued on but I could understand his reasoning for ending it when he did. A good book and I would listen to it again.

3 people found this helpful

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This author is not to miss

If you could sum up The Only Thing Worth Dying For in three words, what would they be?

Funny that the review question asks if I could sum up in three words, but there is a minimum of 15 words for this box.

Well, I can't sum it up in three words be/c I'm just not creative.

What did you like best about this story?

It's a true story. I can't really pick one part out. What I can say is that I have read/listened to three of Eric Blehm's books and he's one of my new favorite authors. If you have not read/listened to Fearless, stop reading this now and go get it! You will never forget that book. This one is great too, but I think Fearless let's you connect more whereas this one I can't find one particular person I've related to or connected with.

That's not to say this isn't just as good. It is a wonderful book.

Which scene was your favorite?

I don't really have one.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

No.

Any additional comments?

If you haven't listened/read Fearless by same author, GET IT! The Last Season is also an engrossing read. I don't think it's in audio format, but if you like to read it's a great book! I anxiously await for more from Eric Blehm.

11 people found this helpful

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A must read/listen

Eric Blehm has written a captivating and masterful recount. He holds nothing back in the research and preparation of his story that stays true to the people and events as they truly happened. This is one story my kids won't read in the history books (if they still have those anymore) but will be told and passed on to them through me as a pivotal point in our America as we know it today.

4 people found this helpful

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Great book

Some books are hard to read or listen to but the narrator in this book was excellent relating the story with all real events painful but at the same time given in a very softly and respectful manner.

1 person found this helpful

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Great listen.

A fantastic book with an equally fantastic narration. I look forward to more by this narrator.

1 person found this helpful

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LOVED IT; did not see the end coming at all

Which character – as performed by P.J. Ochlan – was your favorite?

Amerine

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

When things don't always go as planned

Any additional comments?

just loved the book. felt connected to the men and the story of teamwork, bravery, country and a better afghanistan

1 person found this helpful

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For History and Heros

An excellent author reveals a raw important glimpse into Afghan and US Military history, mistakes and heroics.

1 person found this helpful

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  • gaz617
  • 10-06-19

great book on how the green berets work

Tell you why senior officers should stick to what they should and not interfere

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  • Chris
  • 04-26-19

Special Forces in Afghanistan

Interesting history of the very early days in Afghanistan. Great for any one with an interest in American Special Forces

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Noemie
  • 04-07-19

Nooooooooooo the accents finished me off!

So I'm on chapter three, it's about my eighth attempt at this audio book, and I seriously don't think I'm going to be able to listen to the rest of it. The narrator's accents are killing me they are so cringe worthy!! Why oh why is Karzi an old Eatonion? To the best of my knowledge according to this very book he's an northern Afghan warlord so why a posh brit?? I'm confused and it's so disconcerting I'm truly struggling with the whole book, the narrator is fine to listen to when he talks normally, so why throw this hand grenade of weirdly unmatched accents into the mix, my ears nearly died laughing to start with, but it soon started to really grate on me! I'm sure there's an ok book and narration hiding behind the fringe festival comedy voices?? But if rather not drive myself nuts trying to find it when there are so many other choices which have been done right the first time. Waste of a credit.

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  • Dave
  • 03-17-16

great read

absolutely loved this book great story brilliantly told by the narrator oda 574 remember brilliantly

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  • Justin
  • 08-29-17

its a good leadership book

its a really good leadership book.. n there's an additional bonus material. . very good..

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  • Ben
  • 05-15-17

thoroughly enjoyable

i was totally unaware of this story and it's links to the new Afghan government. thank you fur opening my eyes to those heroes who don't seem the limelight