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Get the facts about real "soldiers of fortune" in: Mercenaries: A Guide to Private Armies and Private Military Companies

January 29, 2014

Washington, DC - From Sleepy Hollow’s the Headless Horseman to Jason Bourne, Rambo, The A-Team, and Soldier of Fortune magazine, we’re fascinated by fictitious mercenaries and those who seem to be able to solve the world’s security issues in unique and behind-the-scenes ways. Are those types of soldiers really active in our world—or are they just a product of popular culture’s imagination? Providing a comprehensive survey and guide to the mercenary forces, entrepreneurs, and corporations that are a major component of warfare today—and through history—is the insightful new resource Mercenaries: A Guide to Private Armies and Private Military Companies from CQ Press.

This comprehensive one-volume resource covers the full range of active mercenaries and private armies around the world, on land, sea, and in the air, exploring security, military advice, training, logistics support, policing, technological expertise, intelligence, and transportation. Packed with illuminating sidebars of biographies of major figures, key statistics, historical and current documents, contracts, and legislation on private armies and outsourced military services, the book offers readers the real facts in three sections:

  • Part 1: Roots and Precedents—covering mercenaries starting in the ancient world, corsairs, Hessians, the Ottoman Empire, and more
  • Part 2: Soldiers of Fortune—exploring foreign legions, mercenaries of the different eras and areas of the world, and more
  • Part 3: The Modern Privatized Military Industry—focusing on modern intelligence, security, and antiterror providers, and more

Each chapter in Mercenaries: A Guide to Private Armies and Private Military Companies includes a bibliography for further reading, and a general bibliography concludes this must-have work. Academic libraries, public libraries, and all libraries with social science, governmental, or non-governmental reference collections will want this valuable new book on their shelves.

A former college professor, Alan Axelrod has written more than thirty reference books. He has also been a creative consultant for The Wild West television documentary series, A&E’s Civil War Journal, the Discovery Channel, and for numerous museums and cultural institutions.


CQ Press is a leading publisher of books, directories, reference publications, and textbooks focusing on U.S. government, world affairs, communication, political science, and business, with a growing focus on digital content. Based in Washington, D.C., CQ Press is an imprint of SAGE, the world’s leading independent academic and professional publisher (, and is known in classrooms, libraries, and professional markets for its objectivity, breadth, and depth of coverage, and editorial excellence.

Mercenaries: A Guide to Private Armies and Private Military Companies

February 2014 440 pages         $150.00 Cloth ISBN: 978-1-6087-1248-9

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