Marine Scouts

Review by Moon Mullins, Editor at Large-

Author Chuck Johnston provides a compelling military story that highlights the actions, and play by play of the 2nd Marine Tank Division, 2nd Battalion, Scout Platoon as these men fight their way through Kuwait which has recently been invaded by 30,000 Iraqi troops. Obviously the United Nations condemn these actions but the military buildup and coalition forces race to fill the void.

Another great story by Mr Johnston that follows the behind the lines actions of Captain Quarry Samuels and his Scout Platoon. At the apex of the fighting Quarry finds his team facing off with the 10,000 strong Iraqi 108th Armored Division! Conducting recon actions he establishes military intelligence that will quickly provide the coaltion forces with the critical information they need in the theater of war.

The main part of the story also includes the skills and field techniques of the Scout Snipers. Marine Scout Snipers are just as good if not better than their counterparts in the Special Forces or Seals. The primary focus of the Scout sniper is to take down other snipers in the field of battle or high value targets. Deployed in teams of two, the 2nd man is the spotter who is the brains behind the team, constantly observing the AO (Area of Operations) for intel and enemy activity. The spotter has to have the sniper’s back (Six) while the Sniper focuses on the target and target area. Its take a special breed of marine to do this work. The training and attrition rate is high paced and quickly seperate the good from the bad during the evaluation of skills required to be the highly trained sniper team ready for battle.

Mr. Johnson leverages his time deployed during the First Gulf War to provide a marine’s point of view as the main narration for the story. Providing radio traffic as part of the dialogue is the touch of reality that makes this story work for me. I was a radio operator (RTO) that also served in the First Gulf War and the actions and dialog resonates with truth and realism that drives a realism and pace of action that is unmatched in todays miltary stories.

Chuck Johnston is a retired US Marine with 28 years of service. He currently teaches in the Joint Military Intelligence Training Center for the Department of Defense.

The book is available at casemate at