Library Journal said
of The Eleven Days of Christmas: America's Last Vietnam Battle, “The American B-52 bombing
campaign (popularly known as the "Chrismas Bombing") of 1972 remains one of the most debated topics of this highly
controversial conflict. Begun by Richard Nixon over the protest of the U.S. Air Force Strategic Air Command, the bombing was
opposed by a large majority of Congress and by the antiwar movement.
Despite unforseen losses, the B-52 bombing was instrumental
in forcing the North Vietnamese back to the negotiating table. While emotional and ill-informed opinions from both Left and
Right dominate discussions of American air strategy in Vietnam, Michel (a retired F-4 pilot and author of Clashes: Air Combat
Over North Vietnam, 1965-72) offers a cogent and superbly researched scholarly examination that is remarkably free of bias.
Drawing from both Vietnamese and American primary and secondary sources, Michel has also utilized a substantial number of
dramatic first-person accounts of participants from both sides.
His day-by-day analysis of the strategy and tactics of the U.S. bomber squadrons
and their North Vietnamese opponents will capture and hold the attention of readers. The author's critique of U.S. Air
Force leadership is certain to attract the notice of scholars. A first-rate contribution; essential for academic collections.”
Colonel Marshall L. Michel III, USAF (ret.), joined the U.S. Air Force in 1966 and went to flight
school at Webb Air Force Base (Texas). In 1970, he was assigned to the 432nd Tactical Reconnaissance
Wing, Udorn Royal Thai Air Force Base, Thailand; first flying the RF-4Cs and later F-4Es. Between 1970
and 1973, Marshall Michel flew 321 combat missions.
Colonel Marshall Michel was the assistance
air attaché at the American embassy in Tel Aviv from 1977 to 1980, when the was then assigned to Langley Air Force
Base as an F-15 pilot. He later assignments included Israel desk officer for the Join Chiefs of Staff and
the NATO staff. He is the author of Clashes: Air Combat over North Vietnam, 1965-1972 and The
Eleven Days of Christmas: America's Last Vietnam Battle.
According to the book description
of Clashes: Air Combat over North Vietnam, 1965-1972, “This classic work, part of the Marine
Corps reading list, makes full use of declassified U.S. documents to offer the first comprehensive study of fighter combat
over North Vietnam. Marshall Michel s balanced, exhaustive coverage describes and analyzes both Air Force and Navy engagements
with North Vietnamese MiGs but also includes discussions of the SAM threat and U.S. countermeasures, laser-guided bombs, and
U.S. attempts to counter the MiG threat with a variety of technological equipment. Accessible yet professional, the book is
filled with valuable lessons learned that are as valid today as they were in the 1960s and 1970s. Some 15 photos and 45 drawings
and maps, including diagrams of both American and North Vietnamese formations and tactics, are included.”