A BLACK SHEEP SERGEANT
AND THE DEADLY POLITICS OF THE WAR IN AFGHANISTAN
MASTER SERGEANT, US ARMY (RET)
A true story of the War in Afghanistan
in·fi·del – Literally “one without faith.”
So is a bad infidel worse than an infidel, or is he just bad at being an infidel?
Master Sergeant Natividad Ruiz is a third generation Texan, a career soldier and a combat veteran with an impeccable record, faithful to God, country and to his duty. Nothing can or will change any of that. But soon after deployment in Afghanistan, his faith in those above him is severely tested when he and his men are told they are going to die there. They are even given a “calendar of death” to count down the days. Ruiz has other plans.
Things have changed in the political hierarchy of the U.S. Army since Ruiz first enlisted. Morale is low and suicide rates are high. Information is shared only on a “need to know” basis, and those in charge seemingly have no idea who “needs to know.” Transferring to the 17th Infantry Regiment, Ruiz is determined to do all he can to protect and guard his men, even if it means challenging the authority of those in command. He is the Rogue Shepherd of the 17th, and the men of his Black Sheep platoon will follow him anywhere.
He wins the trust of the local people by letting them believe he is of Afghani descent (he isn’t), which gains him valuable knowledge of Taliban strengths and movements. He uses his skill and experience to dig up and disarm IEDs to keep the terrain safe, rather than wait for the arrival of the already overworked ordnance disposal teams.
Raw, gritty, hard-hitting, heartbreaking and at times hilarious, but above all honest, Bad Infidel is the story – told in his own words – of Master Sergeant Natividad Ruiz, Rogue Shepherd of the 17th Infantry Regiment, and his will to survive one more tour of duty.
328 pages, illustrated throughout with b/w photographs
“I met the then SFC Ruiz at Joint Base Lewis McCord in Sept 2010. Always direct, with a great sense of humor. I liked him immediately. I found BAD INFiDEL to be a fantastic account of his life. The good times, and some disturbing incidents involving leadership at high levels. I highly recommend BAD INFIDEL. It’s a wonderfully honest account of a soldier’s wartime experiences.”
– Greg Coumas
Proud father of Spc Kyle A. Coumas
KIA 21 Oct, 2009. Afghanistan
WARNING! Contains strong language
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