1 Followers
22 Following
lonesomepoint

lonesomepoint

The War in 2020 - Ralph Peters This novel, which author Ralph Peters's afterword calls "a novel about nightmares," is grim and sad, and largely hopeless until the end. In 2005, covert military partnerships between Japan and other countries allow a country in southern Africa (Zaire, I believe) to hand the United States military (which has come in to protect an ailing government) an unexpected and humiliating, and extremely brutal defeat. ***SPOILERS BELOW***
...

...

...

...

...

...

...

...

...


Colonel George Taylor, hero of this novel, walks a thousand miles across the country to rendezvous with U.S. forces after his helicopter squadron is shot down. He is infected by a deadly plague, but survives; other U.S. troops return to the U.S. and bring the plague with them, and it devastates American society, killing large numbers. Some years later, the Soviet Union (having survived in this novel) convinces the U.S., worn out itself after 2005, to save it from a combined onslaught of Japanese-aided Islamic armies and Soviet rebels. The U.S. sends in an extremely high-tech flying cavalry squadron, led by the now-horribly-scarred Colonel Taylor, and it routs all opposition. After discovering the American involvement, the Japanese use a horrific doomsday weapon to incapacitate some of Taylor's forces. Taylor leads his remaining aircraft in a suicide mission against the Japanese military command center in Baku, resulting in an astonishing, disastrous total defeat for one country. It's difficult not to read this novel with a horrified fascination. Besides its disastrous events, the world is utterly dark and godless. In particular, Israel has been blown up by Syria 15-20 years before the book begins. One of its haunted survivors serves under Colonel Taylor, and has come to see God as brutal and heartless. When Africa and the U.S. are devastated by the plague, no mention whatsoever is made of people calling on God, other than to say televangelists blamed people's sins and "demand[ed] money to intercede on the viewer's behalf." The female CIA analyst whom Taylor loves, who has been treated degradingly by other men all her life, admires him but knows he'll never come back from his mission, just because life is cruel.