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New Book Written by Jeanne McKinney Unveils Truth About Surprise Attack on US Marines’ Last Stronghold Against Terror in Afghanistan

SAN DIEGO, Calif. — Leveraging the mandated drawdown of U.S. troops and “British complacency to security,” the Taliban launched a surprise attack on September 14, 2012, at Camp Bastion in Helmand Province, Afghanistan, home to U.S. and U.K. expeditionary forces. Touted as “impregnable,” Camp Bastion had, in fact, been breached before. Under the cloak of darkness and with American troops spread thin while still fighting a violent insurgency, 15 heavily armed Taliban took an uncharacteristic move to face U.S. Marines head-on, with intent to kill and destroy in what amounted to a suicide mission for the attackers.

“The Taliban would learn in a harsh, unforgiving way they miscalculated U.S. aviation Marines,” writes award-winning military journalist Jeanne McKinney. “On that dark night, the true character of Marine warfighters shone brighter than the hellish enemy fires.”

Yet, what should have been immortalized as a brave, nail-biting mobilization of grit and power to save lives, aircraft and property went sorely under-recognized.

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“The battle was covered up and misrepresented by top U.S. officials, wielding injurious political influence for reasons that still mystify, during a dwindling U.S. footprint adding immeasurable risk to all in the region,” McKinney said. “I wrote my book to repair some of that damage and restore the legacy earned by 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing Marines for their actions against the Taliban that night.”

Over the course of nine years, McKinney conducted in-depth interviews with 13 key Marine warfighters. She shares their relentless experiences on the ground and in the air in mind-blowing detail in her new book, Triumph Over the Taliban: The Untold Story of US Marines’ Courageous Fight to Save Camp Bastion.

“I can honestly say that I was astonished by this true story and admire the fighting spirit of the USMC Aviation Combat Element crews and support personnel, who found themselves as the last line of defense against a formidable enemy force. This incident validates the ‘Soldier First’ mentality for all soldiers deployed on warlike operations. Highly recommended read,” said (former) Sgt. Tyran Jarman, Australian Army Aviation Maintenance Manager, (former) Mission Commander, Unmanned Aerial System Operator, FOB Tarin Kowt, Afghanistan.

With keen investigative prowess, McKinney reveals the true story of what happened at Camp Bastion on that fateful night. After 10 years of research about this battle, McKinney paints a vivid picture of this gripping saga, sharing intimate life and death moments of fighting the Taliban on the Marines’ home turf — showcasing how Marines saved civilian contractors, each other, and over $5 billion in aircraft and equipment.

McKinney also unravels unexpected, latent post-attack investigations that reveal skullduggery about Bastion being breached in the first place and what dominoed into unjust actions that harmed many.

Most importantly, readers will meet the U.S. aviation Marines who fought like infantry — exuding valor to the nth degree, proving to their bold enemy the Marines’ indomitable will to succeed. Triumph Over the Taliban is their remarkable story, with a Foreword by Lieutenant General James Terry, U.S. Army, Commander ISAF Joint Command.

About the Author 

Jeanne McKinney is an award-winning military journalist as well as a military documentary filmmaker. Her focus and passion are telling the legendary stories about United States active-duty military members in their fight to keep America and her allies safe and free. McKinney offers an inside look at men and women who do the hard and very dangerous job of counterinsurgency to stop and disrupt the plans of the world’s most notorious terrorist groups. She shines a light on America’s amazing warfighters, telling their stories as if readers were there with them on combat missions throughout Afghanistan, Iraq, Africa, Syria or wherever the next global hotspot erupts.

She is currently in the final stages of writing, directing and producing Ronin 3: The Battle for Sangin— a three-part documentary series that follows 3rd Battalion, 5th Marines through a labyrinth of murder holes and IEDs in a heavily entrenched Taliban stronghold, on their mission to restore security to the local Afghan people. McKinney has won multiple San Diego Press Club Excellence in Journalism Awards, including eight First-Place honors. The President’s Own Marine Band performed an original score for her film series at a World Premiere in August 2022.

For more information, visit https://patriotprofiles.com/, or follow the author on LinkedIn (https://www.linkedin.com/in/jeannemckinney/) Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/jeanne.mckinney.507) or X (@jeanneemckinney).

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Triumph Over the Taliban: The Untold Story of US Marines’ Courageous Fight to Save Camp Bastion

Publisher: Patriot Profiles Productions

ISBN: 979-8-9896809-0-0 (paperback)

ISBN: 979-8-9896809-1-7 (hardcover)