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Experience the ruthlessness of life and adapt to it by realising that in the quest to survive, empowerment is required. Learn that this lifestyle has serious  consequences  for  the  good  and  for  the  bad.  Relentlessly  push forward to get into positions from where top-class military operations are executed which have serious strategic consequences. 


Gets drawn into high profile criminal scenarios such as the RAUTEM murders of Robert Smit and his wife and be tainted by National Intelligence without having any way to prevent it. Just to be followed up by unchallengeable accusations of controlling the attempted coup d’état in the Seychelles. 


Use intrinsic privilege knowledge and contacts to uncannily sway the military system successfully into a new era of Airborne Artillery. Manipulate Army generals and top management to authorise a most challenging and risky military operation with immense strategic impact. 


Challenge God continuously about experiences right from the start through to the last Special Forces operation.

Herman van Niekerk is a Retired South African Special Forces Colonel with a Masters degree in Business Administration. He left the military in 1999 after 27 years service and started his own company which specialized in security related training and development in South Africa and various other countries in Africa. In November 2010 he joined MARITIME RISK SOLUTIONS as Director of Operations and major shareholder, a company which protects vessels at sea against attacks from pirates and other criminals.

371 pages, B5 size.

Customer Reviews

Based on 10 reviews
An honest account of one man’s journey through the SADF.

An enjoyable and easy read, ‘Born to Storm’ relates Herman’s heritage, his childhood, his schooling, and, like all young white boys at that time, his entry into the SADF to do his National Service. During his initial Parachute Battalion selection, as an Air Force Private, he encountered some men from Special Forces (SF).
As an NCO in 1 Para Bn, Herman decided to make the SADF his career. He became an officer, trained for his first real combat operation ‘Operation Savannah’.
During Operation Savannah, he realised the value of life, and what it meant to be a soldier, along with some dangerous personal traits he started developing, especially when it comes to what is right, and what is wrong. He also rebelled against ‘the system’, a character trait he would later be associated with.
He was wounded in Angola and evacuated to I Military Hospital in Pretoria for treatment. After the well-known battle of ‘Bridge 14’ took place, he returned to Angola and again saw action at the front.
During the final engagements with the Cubans in Angola, his views on politics were solidified. Nor does he hide his disdain for poor planning and clearly expresses his thoughts about things that went wrong during the operation.
After his free-fall parachute course, he joined Special Forces as they ‘did stuff’ he wanted to do. Prior to leaving the artillery, he was awarded the Honoris Crux for bravery in action in Angola.
Following a deployment in Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe), he passed selection for Special Forces. He relates numerous SF operations in Angola, Botswana, Mozambique and Zambia, all with brutal honesty - and humour at times.
The book doesn’t focus on the detail of the operations he partook in but rather on the peripherals where he highlights what he experienced as good and bad behaviours. He tells it as it happened.
‘Born to Storm’ does not focus on the ‘We were the best!’ It is an honest account of one man’s journey through the SADF, and the good and bad he experienced.

Die beste boek wat ek in lang tyd gelees het!

Kol Herman van Niekerk se boek, Born to Storm, is een van die beste boeke wat ek in lang tyd gelees het! Ek kon die boek nie neersit nie en toe ek dit klaar gelees het, het ek gevoel dat ek nog wil lees en wag in spanning vir die opvolg boek, waaraan hy reeds werk!


Exellent book

New Insights

In general I enjoyed Born To Storm and I could recommend it as it gives some first-hand accounts of incidents until now kept under wraps. Herman certainly lead an adventurous life as a soldier. The book is an easy read and the only serious criticism I have is that it is quite clear that neither the Author nor the Editor are native English-speakers. The publication suffers from that all-too-common malady of self-published titles in that it has shoddy editing with many glaring grammatical - and spelling mistakes. One sincerely hopes that subsequent editions would be revised and edited by someone with a better grasp of the English language.


BORN TO STORM - Herman van Niekerk HCS, SM, MMM