I Hear No Bugles
Author: Robert Winston Mercy
Publisher: Lulu.com (2008)
Binding: Paperback, 436 pages
The central theme is Robert's war experiences as a platoon Sergeant of an all-Korean infantry assault unit within an American rifle company; and how a lifetime of absorbed film propaganda and an idealistic quest for honor and meaning plays out against the illusion-shattering reality experienced during 8 major campaigns. The author's twin brother served with him. Collectively they earned 1 Silver Star, 2 Bronze Stars, 4 Purple Hearts and a Presidential Unit Citation for leading a bayonet charge. This is the only known recorded account by a frontline infantrymen who fought in the first hectic year of the Korean War. 106 photos, 7 maps, 18 documents.
I Hear No Bugles is the author’s accounts of his experiences in the US Army during the Korean War. The book includes a short perspective of the author’s earlier years and his time in the army leading up to the Korean conflict, but really gets moving when he is thrust into the Korean war just days after the North invades. The author’s first hand stories of the bravery, cowardice, callousness and sufferings of the American and Republic of Korea troops throughout the conflict are fascinating. The author was there as the North Korean troops pushed the allies back to Pusan. He was there when the allies pushed the North Koreans back to the Chinese border, and he was there to face the massive onslaught of the Chinese that pushed the allies back to the 38th parallel. I can’t imagine fighting a war in such harsh winter conditions and against an enemy that appears to have an unending number of troops to throw at you. Yet the author lived through it, alongside his twin brother who served with him, and has now told his story in this fascinating book.
This book is very well illustrated with photographs, many taken during the war. I recommend it to anyone who enjoys reading military history and especially to anyone who has a specific interest in the Korean War.
Reviewed by: Bob Doerr (2011)