Bristol's Bastards by Nick Maurstad
In Iraq with the 2nd Battalion, 136th Infantry of Minnesota's National Guard

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Minnesota’s toughest farm boys take on Iraqi insurgents
in one of the most irreverent and outrageous memoirs to come out of the war


Bravo Company, 2nd Battalion, 136th Infantry Regiment of the Minnesota National Guard, composed in large part of farm kids from the Midwest who could replace a tank track on the side of the road using nothing but a crescent wrench, Zippo lighter, and a two-by-four, fought alongside the Marine Corps in Anbar province through the deadliest period of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Bravo Company earned the nickname “Bristol’s Bastards” after USMC Colonel George Bristol, commanding officer of the I MEF Headquarters Group, adopted this band of fierce warriors as one of his own. Specialist Nick Maurstad, a member of Bristol’s Bastards, brings to life the experience of fighting in Iraq, kicking down doors, dodging IEDs, battling insurgents in the small towns surrounding Fallujah, and trying to help one another survive in the deadliest place on earth.


Maurstad lost three friends in Iraq, and a friendly demeanor belies his own frustrations. He has intense memories, such as disarming an insurgent who was raising a handgun to shoot while in bed with his wife and children. . . . His mental hurdle for now is visiting the graves of the friends he lost.

St. Paul Pioneer Press,

October 28, 2007



About Nick Maurstad

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DIV Nick Maurstad was a member of the Minnesota National Guard's Bravo Company, which by early 2007 was the most senior unit on Camp Fallujah. Bravo Company discovered a torture house and rescued its victims; helped reduce the amount of IEDs and indirect fire attacks by more than seventy percent; and captured twenty-six known terrorists, including seven al Qaeda operatives in one operation. The unit earned high esteem across Camp Fallujah because of the safety and security they brought to the immediate area, a dramatic contrast to the rest of Iraq. Darwin Holmstrom has written or co-written many books, including the best-selling Camaro Forty Years, Muscle: America's Legendary Performance Cars, Billy Lane Chop Fiction: It's not a Motorcycle, Baby, It's a Chopper, and The Complete Idiot's Guide to Motorcycles. /div
Published November 15, 2008 by Zenith Press. 320 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History, War. Non-fiction

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