There is absolutely nothing in the American experience comparable to basic training or boot camp. If you haven’t been through it, you can’t understand it.
But if you’ve been through it, you never forget it.
No matter where they live, all American fighting men and women have one thing in common: They have survived basic military training. They’ve crawled through the swamps on Parris Island, stood in the frigid cold guarding a Dumpster at Great Lakes, struggled to complete fifteen bars on the horizontal ladder to get to the chow hall at Ft. Jackson, fought desperately to stay awake after long days without sleep at Lackland. They were shaved and screamed at, they barely ate, they marched a hundred miles, and they accomplished things they never would have dreamed were possible. They made the epic journey from civilian to soldier in eight weeks… and gained a lifetime of memories in the process.
If you’ve done it, you will recognize the Drill Instructors, the marching chants, the movie segments, the proper way to make a hospital corner, the jokes, the camaraderie and the shared feeling of triumph. And those who haven’t done it—yet—will understand and appreciate this life-changing experience.
Basic is the story of that training. Col. Jack Jacobs and David Fisher tell the funny, sad, dramatic, poignant, and sometimes crazy history of how America has trained its military, told through the indelible memories of those who remember the experiences as if they happened yesterday.