British national Al Venter has written more than a dozen books on recent military history including "War Dog: Fighting Other People's Wars" on mercenaries as well as "Gunship Ace" (which covers the exploits of Neall Ellis, the world's most famous mercenary aviator). He spent much of his professional career reporting on wars for Jane's Information Group as well as for various news and photo agencies. These assignments ranged from visiting Beirut several times to cover the Lebanese civil war from the Christian side to a spate of African conflicts that included Biafra, South Africa's border wars, the Rhodesia insurgency, the Congo, Tanzania's invasion of Idi Amin's Uganda, Executive Outcomes mercenary operations in Angola and Sierra Leone and others. He was operational in El Salvador's guerrilla struggle and later, in the Balkans. At the behest of the CIA, he made a one-hour TV documentary on the Soviet offensive in Afghanistan in the mid-1980s. Venter has written three books on nuclear proliferation, including Iran's Nuclear Option and How South Africa Built Six Atom Bombs. He originally qualified as a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Shipbrokers at the Baltic Exchange in London.
"...a gripping and hugely informative read. ...highly recommended.
...impressive and enlightening."--The Herald (HMGS)
"...a remarkable read with thriller moments that take you deep into the action"--RAIDER
"..paints a journalistic profile of the modern mercenary. The author traveled to Sierra Leone, Bosnia, Lebanon, the Congo, Angola, and elsewhere in order to give the reader insight into who takes on the role of the mercenary in contemporary times and their role in the world's conflicts."--Book News, Inc.
"A disturbing insight into the ever growing world of unconventional private armies. Like it or not, Venter tells it to us the way it is."--John Le Carre
"In this work Al Venter has delved into the real-life exploits of the War Dogs... to illuminate how the privateers have continued to conduct battle in the wake of the Colonial Age. The true stories in this work are more impressive than fiction, and in terms of Africa, this book should be on the must read list for the U.S. State Department and British Foreign Office."--Frederick Forsyth