Into Enemy Waters
GI’s called them “half fish, half nuts.” Today, we call them Navy SEALs.
Discover the true story of one of the last surviving frogmen of World War II and the demolition divers who became the Navy SEALs. Outfitted with just swim trunks and a dive mask, 17-year-old George Morgan and fellow frogmen braved fierce enemy fire and rough seas as they scouted bullet-swept Omaha Beach, the black sands of Iwo Jima, the shark infested reefs of Okinawa, and the cold waters of Tokyo Bay.
Praise for Into Enemy Waters
“A compelling narrative full of World War II fireworks.”
“A vivid and fast-moving narrative of courage and sacrifice under the most extreme conditions. WWII buffs will be thrilled.”
“Readers will enjoy the visceral and detailed writing that illuminates the uncomfortable nature of war and the maturity of teenagers who ultimately saved the world from fascism.”
“An authentic, vigorously reported and told story of the men in both the Atlantic and Pacific Theaters whose literally explosive exploits became the envy of and inspiration for the Navy SEALS. Thank goodness the ‘demolition divers’ are finally getting their due, and in such riveting detail.”
—Tom Clavin, New York Times bestselling author of Halsey’s Typhoon: The True Story of a Fighting Admiral, an Epic Storm and an Untold Rescue; and Lightning Down
“Exhaustively researched and written in a lively, gripping manner, this history deserves to be on the bookshelf of anyone who admires courage or who has donned a face mask and looked below the surface of any sea.”
—Bing West, author of The Last Platoon, Marine combat Veteran, and former Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs.
“A remarkably stirring narrative that transports readers into the gritty realities of surviving WWII. Andrew Dubbins’ Into Enemy Waters is more than just a great retelling of the history of early combat swimmers and Frogmen. This well-researched book is both visceral and uplifting, telling of a time of great courage, integrity and camaraderie. These are not your Hollywood Navy Seals. They are real men that sacrificed their youth and innocence for the greater good.”
—Jill Heinerth, author of Into The Planet – My Life as a Cave Diver
“The harrowing combat experiences of George Morgan and his pioneering comrades of the World War II U.S. Navy’s combat demolition units come to life in this well-researched, intimate history. Andrew Dubbins tells their story with authoritative empathy and much verve.”
—John C. McManus, Ph.D., Curators’ Distinguished Professor of History, Missouri S&T, and author of Island Infernos: The U.S. Army’s Pacific War Odyssey, 1944.
“Today’s SEALs are a highly effective, versatile, and lethal force, but they stand on the shoulders of these heroic WWII frogmen. This book must be included in the canon of histories about our nation’s special operations forces. Andrew Dubbins meticulously and faithfully takes the reader from Ft. Pierce to Omaha Beach to the bloody amphibious invasions of the Pacific to recount the story of the Navy’s fabled Underwater Demolition Teams. May their memory never fade.”
—Captain Michael V. Goshgarian, Retired Navy SEAL, Naval Special Warfare 1989-2016.
“This is a gripping, heart-racing, nail-biting masterpiece. It tells the story of George Morgan, his commander and fellow frogmen on an underwater demolition team that evolved into the Navy SEALS. Join them at Normandy, where, faces gray with fear, they swim through searing gunfire, shrieking shells and moaning men to blast apart Nazi barriers; then join them in the Pacific, where, during the bloodiest invasions of World War II, they map the ocean floor at Iwo Jima for U.S. warships and swim onto the shores of Japan itself. These are their personal stories, exhaustively reported by a master of elegantly layered styling, who has written a book about rare and breathtaking courage. It will hold you deeply into the night, and you will be glad that it did.”
—Richard E. Meyer, senior editor at UCLA Blueprint magazine and two-time Pulitzer finalist
“Anyone awed by the traditions of the U.S. Navy SEALs—as everyone should be—will be equally awed by how the SEALs became the SEALs. Dubbins has done a service not only to the SEALs, but also to the armchair adventurer who just wants a rip of a read.”
—Gary Kinder, New York Times bestselling author of Ship of Gold in the Deep Blue Sea
“A superior piece of narrative military history, offering intimate profiles of the young men called upon to perform some of the most dangerous feats of World War Two that proved critical to pivotal battles on both fronts. Andrew Dubbins has succeeded in portraying a fully human portrait of these men, who were both vulnerable to the horror of war and somehow able to survive it.”
—McKay Jenkins, author of The Last Ridge: The Epic Story of America’s First Mountain Soldiers and the Assault on Hitler’s Europe
“Into Enemy Waters frameworks the creation of the UDT in a personal storytelling way that is both relatable and exciting. It does not read like a history book but rather a thrilling war novel. For us Frogmen, the book brings more clarity to the origin story that we have been passing down since 1943.”
—Steven R. Frazer, Retired Navy SEAL, CAPT. USNR
“Gripping and intensely moving, Into Enemy Waters is a timely reminder that war leaves none of its participants unaffected. Andrew Dubbins has honored the memory of those who gave their lives and announced himself as a major new talent in narrative nonfiction.”
—Saul David, author of Crucible of Hell: The Heroism and Tragedy of Okinawa, 1945
“A tale of breathtaking and breath-holding daring. This is D-Day and the Pacific Theater as you’ve never witnessed it before—through the eyes of the frogmen who reconnoitered the murky, mine-filled waters and hostile shores for allied landings. Into Enemy Waters reminds us of the meaning of true sacrifice and courage.”
—Buddy Levy, award-winning and bestselling author of Labyrinth of Ice: The Triumphant and Tragic Greely Polar Expedition and River of Darkness
“This book is a rollicking tale of warfare from a different time, when America’s elite units were cobbled together on short notice and manned with skinny teenagers who had every reason to expect they would get killed in battle. It is a story of noble intentions but also terrible desperation. Andrew Dubbins elegantly weaves personal stories through the grand historical narrative, while offering a compelling backstory about the hardscrabble origins of a legendary special operations force.”
—Graeme Smith, author of The Dogs Are Eating Them Now: Our War In Afghanistan
“As their numbers decline, it is essential to preserve the memories of the veterans of WW II. Andrew Dubbins has done this in this excellent book, describing the tragic horror of that war while writing of the daily acts of courage of those who served. From Normandy to Iwo Jima, his account of the courageous Underwater Demolition Teams, the famed US Navy ‘Frogmen,’ is powerful. But in Dubbins’ sensitive telling, it is also so very personal and human. A moving story well told.”
—James Wright, President Emeritus of Dartmouth College, historian and Marine Corps veteran, and author of War and American Life: Reflections on Those Who Serve and Sacrifice