Title: Delta Four – Australian Riflemen in Vietnam
Author: McKay, Gary
Edition: 2nd Edition
Publication Date: 1998
Cover: Soft Cover without Dust Jacket – 336 pages
Comments: This book tells the story of one of the last groups of Australian riflemen who served in the Vietnam War.
Delta Four exposes the inner workings of a rifle company – how its soldiers trained for war, and how they operated and fought in the war zone. It examines the basic qualities of infantry soldiering, of leadership and battlecraft. Above all else, it gives the soldiers’ viewpoint of those aspects of war-fighting not found in the training pamphlets.
Gary McKay has been able to get the veterans to open up and give voice to things usually left unsaid, or at least rarely expressed. Being a veteran himself, he appreciates what these men experienced, and he has been able to tap into their innermost thoughts and emotions, faithfully recording how they felt then and what they feel today. Rarely does one get to examine the command chain of a unit such as this rifle company from the commander down to the rifleman.
Gary McKay interviewed the men from this company of the last battalion that served in Vietnam, and in 1993 travelled back to Vietnam with some of them. There he met with former Viet Cong and North Vietnamese soldiers, who shared their private views on one of the most tragic episodes in Australian military history.
About Gary McKay
Gary McKay served as a rifle platoon commander in Viet Nam and was awarded the Military Cross for gallantry. His time in Viet Nam was the basis of his bestselling ‘In Good Company: One Man’s War in Vietnam’. His second book, ‘Vietnam Fragments’, recently re-released as ‘Bullets, Beans and Bandages’ is an invaluable oral history of Australia’s war in Viet Nam. ‘Delta Four’, another bestseller, exposes the inner workings of a rifle company, giving the soldier’s viewpoint of those aspects of war-fighting not found in the training pamphlets. His latest book, ‘All Guts & No Glory’, was written with Bob Buick and recounts Buick’s experiences as a platoon sergeant in Viet Nam and in Australia’s most famous battle at Long Tan. After almost 30 years military service, Gary retired from the army. He lives in Jervis Bay, NSW and currently works as a freelance historian and non-fiction writer.