Beneath the Visiting Moon covers Hoopers time with a tough but little-known
South African Police anti-terrorist unitKoevoet. It operated very
effectively in the 1980s on the Namibian/Angolan border against men of the
South West Africa Peoples Organization (SWAPO) who were attempting
to destabilise the country with ambush and assassination. Hoopers book
is in part a history of this conflict and as such a useful English-language
reference. It is also a personal odyssey.
Beneath the Visiting Moon describes a war that lasted over twenty years [and]
cost thousands of lives. Jim Hooper, a veteran correspondent of what we now
call regional conflicts, spent months with Koevoet, which not
only was at the sharp end of this conflict but became internationally notorious
for what its enemies called its murder and terror tactics, and its friends
referred to as efficiency. However, this is no ordinary war book
and no ordinary wander through a war zone. Its probably as close as
you can get to the real thing without leaving ones comfortable armchair.
European Freedom Review
Beneath the visiting Moon is a brutal tale, but well told and compulsory
reading for anyone interested in modern guerrilla warfare.
Combat & Survival
Mr Hooper, who received bullet and shrapnel wounds while researching Beneath
the Visiting Moon, has produced an exciting, disturbing and thought-provoking
story. He evokes much of the loneliness, beauty and tragedy of Southern Africa
in the books quieter moments, which are sprinkled between sections
of breathless and gruesome action.
Hooper spent months with Koevoet during their field operations, coming to
know the men both black and white who endlessly scoured the
southern Africas bushveldt for SWAPOs elusive terrorists. More
often than not they found them, and Koevoet racked up the highest kill ratio
of any security force elements in the AO. He is certainly one of the finest
combat correspondents to report from the Namibia/Angola theatre, and Beneath
Visiting Moon reflects the best of that breed of journalism and journalist.
In Hoopers own words, Beneath the Visiting Moon is an account
of people caught up in a little-known conflict in an even less-known part
of the world. What makes this book particularly exciting and
it definitely isis knowing that the author voluntarily gave up the
security of jumping out of airplanes for taking real risks, the likes of
which none of us normal skydivers would never consider.
BJ Worth, Skydiving
Hooper explores the mystique of an elite unit and provides an insight into
the personalities and motivations of men who thrive on war. [He] comes across
as an honest reporter with a keen eye for detail, and has crafted a superb
account of the black and white comrades-in-arms who make up a unique unit
already a legend in counterinsurgency warfare.
The tough comradeship within Koevoet, which made distinctions of colour or
race meaningless, is captured by Hooper and by the end of the book we share
with him the sense of personal loss as he begins his journey back to his
home in the peace of rural Hampshire. Beneath the Visiting Moon combines
information and reflection with adventure, humour and tragedy. Hooper is
a gifted photographer and a craftsman with the written word. Read it, its