Book Review: Rambo

Author: Col. Ashutosh Kale

This non-fiction book is a true account of special forces officer Major Sujir Walia of 9 Para (SF) who attained martyrdom at 30.

This is not just the story of a braveheart son of the soil but an account of a soldier’s grit and courage and never-give-up attitude in the face of adversities. The book takes us on a poignant sojourn where the hardships of military training come to the fore. The olive green sheen is not easy to attain or to maintain for that matter both figuratively and literally.

While the political bigwigs sitting in plush offices make decisions for their respective ideologies, it’s these soldiers who have to bear the brunt of it all as they defend our frontiers. Time and again we have been privy to how insurgencies or war has affected us and how we have lost our men in the process of maintaining the dignity of the tricolour fluttering on the highest peak.

Major Sudhir Walia’s heroics are a source of motivation for all of us. He is an epitome of resilience who leads from the front playing the favourite game of hide-and-seek with death. Whether the operation against the LTTE in Srilanka, The Kargil war or snuffing out foreign militants, Sudhir never took a breather during a mission and was a step ahead in strategic planning and execution. Everyone around him looked up to him and was ready to take a bullet for him. Even in death as he was getting evacuated gravely injured, his thoughts remained with the ongoing mission.

The author, himself an army man has detailed the road of thorns our soldiers tread on every day, during every mission, so that we enjoy the breath of freedom. The Kargil war in particular has been described in such a way that the reader feels the sense of pride and patriotism as if he is present at the location. At the same time, it gives us goosebumps to read about the intense exchange of fire or the loss and mutilation of our soldiers who were caught by the enemy as prisoners. One cant remain without tearing up at the narrative.

The pictures published in the book give us a feel of realism. Sudhir Walia stands immortalised….

Hats off to our soldiers. Jai Hind


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