Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Quote of the Day: Thank You for Your Service. You Can Go Now.

 

“Time of trouble,” I objected, “a man who can handle a gun is good to have around, and on your side.”

“Sure,” pa would say, “but when trouble is over folks can’t get shut of him fast enough.”

— Louis L’Amour, Tucker, 1971

When I read this, I first thought of our veterans. And that reminded me of Victor Davis Hanson’s The Savior Generals, and how the five leaders in the book fared following their salvific acts on behalf of their country (city-state, empire). 

The same motif shows up in Westerns like Shane, Pale Rider, and even, in a way, in The Virginian.

And, God help us, here it is again, in Black Sabbath’s Iron Man, a song about a robot/machine that has been neglected since his act of rescue:

Now, the time is here
For Iron Man to spread fear
Vengeance from the grave
Kills the people he once saved

The difference is that the heroes would take up the mantle anyway, knowing the cost. Iron Man can’t. He knows revenge, not honor. Perhaps that is what makes the hero the hero.

So I’m wondering what examples other folks have come across of heroes who are neglected, dispensed with, or destroyed once their services are no longer needed. Churchill, of course, counts.

Published in General
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There are 43 comments.

  1. Kozak Member

    TOMMY

    “I went into a public-‘ouse to get a pint o’ beer,
    The publican ‘e up an’ sez, “We serve no red-coats here.”
    The girls be’ind the bar they laughed an’ giggled fit to die,
    I outs into the street again an’ to myself sez I:
    O it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ “Tommy, go away”;
    But it’s “Thank you, Mister Atkins” when the band begins to play,
    The band begins to play, my boys, the band begins to play,
    O it’s “Thank you, Mister Atkins” when the band begins to play.”

    “I went into a theatre as sober as could be,
    They gave a drunk civilian room, but ‘adn’t none for me;
    They sent me to the gallery or round the music-‘alls,
    But when it comes to fightin’, Lord! they’ll shove me in the stalls!
    For it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ “Tommy, wait outside”;
    But it’s “Special train for Atkins” when the trooper’s on the tide,
    The troopship’s on the tide, my boys, the troopship’s on the tide,
    O it’s “Special train for Atkins” when the trooper’s on the tide.”

    “Yes, makin’ mock o’ uniforms that guard you while you sleep
    Is cheaper than them uniforms, an’ they’re starvation cheap;
    An’ hustlin’ drunken soldiers when they’re goin’ large a bit
    Is five times better business than paradin’ in full kit.
    Then it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ “Tommy, ‘ow’s yer soul?”
    But it’s “Thin red line of ‘eroes” when the drums begin to roll,
    The drums begin to roll, my boys, the drums begin to roll,
    O it’s “Thin red line of ‘eroes” when the drums begin to roll.”

    “We aren’t no thin red ‘eroes, nor we aren’t no blackguards too,
    But single men in barricks, most remarkable like you;
    An’ if sometimes our conduck isn’t all your fancy paints,
    Why, single men in barricks don’t grow into plaster saints;
    While it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ “Tommy, fall be’ind”,
    But it’s “Please to walk in front, sir” when there’s trouble in the wind,
    There’s trouble in the wind, my boys, there’s trouble in the wind,
    O it’s “Please to walk in front, sir” when there’s trouble in the wind.”

    “You talk o’ better food for us, an’ schools, an’ fires, an’ all:
    We’ll wait for extry rations if you treat us rational.
    Don’t mess about the cook-room slops, but prove it to our face
    The Widow’s Uniform is not the soldier-man’s disgrace.
    For it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ “Chuck him out, the brute!”
    But it’s “Saviour of ‘is country” when the guns begin to shoot;
    An’ it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ anything you please;
    An’ Tommy ain’t a bloomin’ fool — you bet that Tommy sees!”

    Rudyard Kipling

    • #1
    • November 15, 2019, at 5:23 AM PST
    • 26 likes
  2. Randy Webster Member

    MacArthur comes to mind.

    • #2
    • November 15, 2019, at 5:44 AM PST
    • 8 likes
  3. Vectorman Thatcher

    James Hageman: And that reminded me of Victor Davis Hanson’s The Savior Generals, and how the five leaders in the book fared following their salvific acts on behalf of their country (city state, empire).

    The five Savior Generals are:

    Themosticles, the Athenian admiral who saved Greece from Persian domination at the naval battle of Salamis.

    Belasrius, during the reign of the Emperor Justinian, saved the Byzantine Empire for almost 1,000 years.

    Gen. William Tecumseh Sherman, for his strategic blow against Atlanta and the deep South during the Civil War.

    Gen. Matthew Ridgeway’s brilliant counterattacks during the Korean War.

    Gen. David Patraeus’ intellectual’s knowledge and first-hand combatant experience in countering guerrillas to Iraq.


    The Quote of the Day series is the easiest way to start a fun conversation on Ricochet. There are only 3 open days left on the November Signup Sheet, We even include tips for finding great quotes, so choose your favorite quote and sign up today!

    • #3
    • November 15, 2019, at 5:55 AM PST
    • 10 likes
  4. Vectorman Thatcher

    Randy Webster (View Comment):

    MacArthur comes to mind.

    I don’t inherently disagree, but VDH talks about Ridgeway taking over from MacArthur in Korea.

    Added: Until recently, IIRC, VDH considered himself a “classic” Democrat. He probably supported Harry Truman’s opinion of MacArthur.

    • #4
    • November 15, 2019, at 5:58 AM PST
    • 7 likes
  5. Seawriter Member

    Old British verse:

    God and the soldier alike are adored
    When danger’s at hand, and not before.
    Once danger is past, both alike are requited,
    God is forgotten and the soldier slighted.

    • #5
    • November 15, 2019, at 6:04 AM PST
    • 15 likes
  6. MichaelKennedy Coolidge

    “Tommy” was the first thing I thought of. 

    Grant and Sherman were the heroes of the Civil War. Sherman was more sophisticated and avoided politics like the plague. He lived out his life enjoying himself and one of his pallbearers at his death was Joe Johnston, his adversary for most of his campaign. An aide told Johnson that he was risking his life by participating in the ceremony at his age and in that weather. Johnston replied, “Sherman would have done it for me.” He died a month later.

    Grant, of course, was betrayed by his friends and ended a pauper when his “friends” gave him bad investment advice. Mark Twain rescued him and his family from poverty as he edited and found a publisher for Grant’s Memoirs. Grant finished it a day or so before he died. I read it in college. You can sense his writing goes faster and faster as the end approaches.

    • #6
    • November 15, 2019, at 6:59 AM PST
    • 12 likes
  7. EODmom Coolidge

    WWI vets returning – in both the UK and the US.

    • #7
    • November 15, 2019, at 7:01 AM PST
    • 8 likes
  8. EODmom Coolidge

    Kozak (View Comment):

    TOMMY

    “I went into a public-‘ouse to get a pint o’ beer,
    The publican ‘e up an’ sez, “We serve no red-coats here.”
    The girls be’ind the bar they laughed an’ giggled fit to die,
    I outs into the street again an’ to myself sez I:
    O it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ “Tommy, go away”;
    But it’s “Thank you, Mister Atkins” when the band begins to play,
    The band begins to play, my boys, the band begins to play,
    O it’s “Thank you, Mister Atkins” when the band begins to play…

    …………

    But it’s “Thin red line of ‘eroes” when the drums begin to roll,
    The drums begin to roll, my boys, the drums begin to roll,
    O it’s “Thin red line of ‘eroes” when the drums begin to roll.”
    ………

    But it’s “Saviour of ‘is country” when the guns begin to shoot;
    An’ it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ anything you please;
    An’ Tommy ain’t a bloomin’ fool — you bet that Tommy sees!”

    Rudyard Kipling

    What a writer. Kipling’s personal story is Particularly poignant. 

    • #8
    • November 15, 2019, at 7:05 AM PST
    • 8 likes
  9. Kozak Member

    EODmom (View Comment):

    Kozak (View Comment):

    TOMMY

    “I went into a public-‘ouse to get a pint o’ beer,
    The publican ‘e up an’ sez, “We serve no red-coats here.”
    The girls be’ind the bar they laughed an’ giggled fit to die,
    I outs into the street again an’ to myself sez I:
    O it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ “Tommy, go away”;
    But it’s “Thank you, Mister Atkins” when the band begins to play,
    The band begins to play, my boys, the band begins to play,
    O it’s “Thank you, Mister Atkins” when the band begins to play…

    …………

    But it’s “Thin red line of ‘eroes” when the drums begin to roll,
    The drums begin to roll, my boys, the drums begin to roll,
    O it’s “Thin red line of ‘eroes” when the drums begin to roll.”
    ………

    But it’s “Saviour of ‘is country” when the guns begin to shoot;
    An’ it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ anything you please;
    An’ Tommy ain’t a bloomin’ fool — you bet that Tommy sees!”

    Rudyard Kipling

    What a writer. Kipling’s personal story is Particularly poignant.

    He was the consummate “Imperial”. I wonder if he gets a mention in modern British schools except as a bad bad man…

    • #9
    • November 15, 2019, at 7:25 AM PST
    • 8 likes
  10. Boss Mongo Member

    Joshua Chamberlain, not just because of what he and the 20th Maine accomplished at Little Round Top; his whole life exemplifies the best of “citizen soldier.”

    • #10
    • November 15, 2019, at 8:02 AM PST
    • 12 likes
  11. Boss Mongo Member

    Dan Petithory, Jeff Davis, and Doug Prosser, all KIA by a wayward US JDAM 0n 05 December, 2001, and all the wounded heroes of ODA 574.

    • #11
    • November 15, 2019, at 8:23 AM PST
    • 11 likes
  12. Jim George Member

    Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, United States Army, Ret’d, is to me a classic example of how a true military hero can be used- in his case for 33 years, several of which were in armed conflict — and then discarded like a common thief for the most vile of all purposes, to satisfy the blood lust of the Weissmann Special Counsel investigation. I wrote about this in my recent post “The Kafkaesque Persecution of Gen. Flynn” in these terms:

    It couldn’t happen here? Try telling that to Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, U.S.Army (Ret’d), who served his country in uniform for 33 years, 5 of which were in active combat under arms. At the very height of an already brilliant career and a lifetime of accomplishments, he is sitting in his office in the White House as the newly designated National Security Adviser when he is visited by two agents of the FBI, one of whom is straight out of Kafka, the grotesquely detestable Peter Sztrok, who just happened to be in the neighborhood and thought they would “drop-in” for a friendly, “relaxed”, “jocular” chat.

    The tide may be turning in the General’s favor, however, thanks to his selection of Sidney Powell as his new attorney, probably the best pick he could have made of all the lawyers in the country, to replace the Beltway Firm who let him walk right into Weissmann’s steel trap and plead guilty, very likely to protect themselves from what is more and more looking like blatant conflicts of interest. 

    By the way, I would like to note that we sent a contribution to the General’s defense fund with a handwritten letter spelling out how much we admired him and were sick to death of what was done to him and how he was made the sacrificial lamb and we received a handwritten note of appreciation from the General which was quite touching and most poignant. 

    @JamesHageman, thanks for this great post and thanks to all for the great poems. With reference to Kipling, I must note, for what it’s worth, that one of my all time favorite pieces of writing was his “Gods of the Copybook Headings”, a reading of which today sounds like it was written last week, not 100 years ago. 

    • #12
    • November 15, 2019, at 9:11 AM PST
    • 13 likes
  13. Skyler Coolidge

    Vectorman (View Comment):

    Gen. William Tecumseh Sherman, for his strategic blow against Atlanta and the deep South during the Civil War.

    Gen. Matthew Ridgeway’s brilliant counterattacks during the Korean War.

    Gen. David Patraeus’ intellectual’s knowledge and first-hand combatant experience in countering guerrillas to Iraq.

    Oh, that’s too much.

    How in the name of all that is good did Patraeus get on that list? He’s a fine man, but he hardly saved western civilization. It is a sin to put him on such a pedestal, inviting others to properly knock him off of it.

    Ridgeway is another fine general, but let’s face it, he didn’t win the war. He didn’t even take back all of what was South Korea before the war started. Again, he has been done a disservice.

    As for Sherman, I am flabbergasted that he would be listed. Sherman was a buffoon and mentally ill. General Thomas saved his butt too many times, and then Sherman wandered off to kill civilians, and violate all current laws of war. His foray into the southern states did more to embitter southerners than anything, and impoverished much of the south until very recently. And that’s before we even discuss the lack of sense in even fighting that war at all. Democrats back then were almost as bad as now, just not communists yet. They latched onto the slavery issue as a pretext for a gross expansion of federal power.

    This is one of the problems I have with Hansen. He’s a one-hit wonder. He started with a fantastic theory about how the Greeks were heavily influenced by their farming culture, especially of olives and the nature of their husbandry. Donald Kagan cited his theory as a brilliant insight that is missed by many modern historians who don’t live on farms. Since that book, he has proven to be a mediocre professor. I’m not going to say I’m smarter than him, I’m sure I’m not, but he has over played his scholarly credentials way past his abilities. This list is exhibit A for that conclusion.

    • #13
    • November 15, 2019, at 11:31 AM PST
    • 1 like
  14. MichaelKennedy Coolidge

    Boss Mongo (View Comment):
    his whole life exemplifies the best of “citizen soldier.”

    I assume you know that he had a bladder fistula from a battle wound for the rest of his life. It drained urine continually.

    • #14
    • November 15, 2019, at 11:34 AM PST
    • 1 like
  15. MichaelKennedy Coolidge

    Skyler (View Comment):
    Sherman was a buffoon and mentally ill.

    Wow ! It would be interesting to find where you learned that. Sherman was considered by Liddell Hart, British military historian, to have originated maneuver war that was later adopted by the Germans in WWII. I have a library of books on Sherman and I must have missed the one you read.

    • #15
    • November 15, 2019, at 11:37 AM PST
    • 2 likes
  16. Seawriter Member

    MichaelKennedy (View Comment):
    Wow ! It would be interesting to find where you learned that. Sherman was considered by Liddell Hart, British military historian, to have originated maneuver war that was later adopted by the Germans in WWII. I have a library of books on Sherman and I must have missed the one you read.

    Trust me on this one. Those were all commonly published opinions in northern newspapers in late 1861 through early 1862. If you stop your research at that point it is a perfectly reasonable conclusion to reach.

    • #16
    • November 15, 2019, at 11:59 AM PST
    • 3 likes
  17. Skyler Coolidge

    MichaelKennedy (View Comment):

    Skyler (View Comment):
    Sherman was a buffoon and mentally ill.

    Wow ! It would be interesting to find where you learned that. Sherman was considered by Liddell Hart, British military historian, to have originated maneuver war that was later adopted by the Germans in WWII. I have a library of books on Sherman and I must have missed the one you read.

    Liddell Hart is kind of silly to make that claim, isn’t he? Smashing through a sparsely defended continent by raping and plundering the population is hardly new. What Sherman did was entirely different from what the Germans did. The Germans had a well developed logistic train. Sherman plundered the land he marched over. Although Sherman was quite brilliant at ransacking and plundering, one should be careful of the hagiographies of Lincoln, Grant, and Sherman. I highly recommend a biography of General George Thomas, “Master of War” by Benson Bobrick as one of the corrections to the hagiographies of Grant and Sherman. It’s very well written and you might, like me, have a new personal hero. Thomas never lost a battle while when he was in command, and achieved stunning victories with remarkably low casualties. He was loved by those who served under him. He died shortly after the war and was unable to defend himself from the self-serving criticisms by Sherman and Thomas.

    Yes, Sherman had mental illness. From History.com:

    “Following a promising performance at July 1861’s First Battle of Bull Run, Sherman was promoted to brigadier general and eventually given command of Union troops in Kentucky and Tennessee. Sherman hadn’t wanted the role, and in short order, the weight of its responsibilities took a toll on his mental health. He vastly overestimated the size of Confederate forces in the region, griped in his dispatches to President Lincoln and appeared constantly on edge. Historians have since speculated that he was suffering from depression or nervous exhaustion, but whatever its cause, the general’s bizarre behavior eventually found its way into the papers, some of which labeled him insane. Sherman requested to be relieved from his position in early November 1861, and remained sidelined until that December, when he was reassigned to the Western Theater. He was later placed under the command of General Ulysses S. Grant, and following a crucial victory at April 1862’s Battle of Shiloh, the pair forged a winning partnership that lasted for the remainder of the war.”

    • #17
    • November 15, 2019, at 12:05 PM PST
    • 1 like
  18. MichaelKennedy Coolidge

    Skyler (View Comment):

    MichaelKennedy (View Comment):

    Skyler (View Comment):
    Sherman was a buffoon and mentally ill.

    Wow ! It would be interesting to find where you learned that. Sherman was considered by Liddell Hart, British military historian, to have originated maneuver war that was later adopted by the Germans in WWII. I have a library of books on Sherman and I must have missed the one you read.

    Liddell Hart is kind of silly to make that claim, isn’t he? Smashing through a sparsely defended continent by raping and plundering the population is hardly new. What Sherman did was entirely different from what the Germans did. The Germans had a well developed logistic train. Sherman plundered the land he marched over. Although Sherman was quite brilliant at ransacking and plundering, one should be careful of the hagiographies of Lincoln, Grant, and Sherman. snip

    Yes, Sherman had mental illness. From History.com:

    “Following a promising performance at July 1861’s First Battle of Bull Run, Sherman was promoted to brigadier general and eventually given command of Union troops in Kentucky and Tennessee. Sherman hadn’t wanted the role, and in short order, the weight of its responsibilities took a toll on his mental health. He vastly overestimated the size of Confederate forces in the region, griped in his dispatches to President Lincoln and appeared constantly on edge. Historians have since speculated that he was suffering from depression or nervous exhaustion, but whatever its cause, the general’s bizarre behavior eventually found its way into the papers, some of which labeled him insane. Sherman requested to be relieved from his position in early November 1861, and remained sidelined until that December, when he was reassigned to the Western Theater. He was later placed under the command of General Ulysses S. Grant, and following a crucial victory at April 1862’s Battle of Shiloh, the pair forged a winning partnership that lasted for the remainder of the war.”

    Sounds like southern hatred. Among other things, only one Union soldier was accused of rape and was hung.

    Joe Johnston,. who knew Sherman better than you do, said of his army, “There has been no army like this one since Julius Caesar.”

    It is widely acknowledged that early on Sherman had a lot of anxiety and repeatedly warned the Union leaders that 90 day enlistments were useless and the casualties would be many thousands. His men stood firm on the first battle of Bull Run, unlike the the rest of the army, and his men also held their ground at Shiloh in spite of being surprised.

    • #18
    • November 15, 2019, at 2:43 PM PST
    • 5 likes
  19. Rightfromthestart Coolidge

    The Flynn persecution infuriates me also, if that rotten FBI/DOJ crew doesn’t wind up in prison there is no justice.

    If there’s anyone left who hasn’t read Powell’s ‘License to Lie’ , it is a must read, it’s the same lousy crew, Powell knows them well.

    • #19
    • November 15, 2019, at 3:59 PM PST
    • 4 likes
  20. Randy Webster Member

    Rightfromthestart (View Comment):

    The Flynn persecution infuriates me also, if that rotten FBI/DOJ crew doesn’t wind up in prison there is no justice.

    If there’s anyone left who hasn’t read Powell’s ‘License to Lie’ , it is a must read, it’s the same lousy crew, Powell knows them well.

    They aren’t going to end up in prison, so you need to do whatever it is you do when disappointed.

    • #20
    • November 15, 2019, at 4:03 PM PST
    • 3 likes
  21. Clifford A. Brown Contributor

    Vectorman (View Comment):

    Randy Webster (View Comment):

    MacArthur comes to mind.

    I don’t inherently disagree, but VDH talks about Ridgeway taking over from MacArthur in Korea.

    Added: Until recently, IIRC, VDH considered himself a “classic” Democrat. He probably supported Harry Truman’s opinion of MacArthur.

    Dugout Doug? Well deserved. MacArthur’s ego was repeatedly underwritten by American life and limb. It is no accident that this American Caesar faded away, while Eisenhower was elected president.

     

    • #21
    • November 15, 2019, at 4:13 PM PST
    • 6 likes
  22. Randy Webster Member

    When MacArthur died, he marched up to God, saluted, and said “Relieving you sir.”

    • #22
    • November 15, 2019, at 4:15 PM PST
    • 7 likes
  23. Randy Webster Member

    It’s late, and I may be remembering incorrectly, but the big bloodlettings: Tarawa, Pelilieu, Okinawa, and Iwo Jima were Nimitz’s. As best I can recall, MacArthur was pretty chary of his soldiers’ lives.

    • #23
    • November 15, 2019, at 4:21 PM PST
    • 4 likes
  24. Skyler Coolidge

    Clifford A. Brown (View Comment):

    Vectorman (View Comment):

    Randy Webster (View Comment):

    MacArthur comes to mind.

    I don’t inherently disagree, but VDH talks about Ridgeway taking over from MacArthur in Korea.

    Added: Until recently, IIRC, VDH considered himself a “classic” Democrat. He probably supported Harry Truman’s opinion of MacArthur.

    Dugout Doug? Well deserved. MacArthur’s ego was repeatedly underwritten by American life and limb. It is no accident that this American Caesar faded away, while Eisenhower was elected president.

     

    My dad had a friend, whom I also had the pleasure to meet many times, who was a survivor of the Bataan Death March. He had no pleasant descriptors of MacArthur.

    Nor do I. It is a basic tenet of military leadership, in our military anyway, that you do not abandon your troops. When he was “ordered” to run away and leave his army to be killed and taken prisoner, he should have refused and any man with balls would have done that. If they could sneak a boat and a submarine close enough to take him away, they could have supplied the American forces there with some food and ammo.

    Abandoning the Philipines may or may not have been a wise strategic move for our nation, but not for the man charged with its defense.

    No man is so indispensible. He was a capable general, but we would have done fine waging the war without him. I would rather have had General Wainwright and any of the privates back rather than that lily livered egotist.

    • #24
    • November 15, 2019, at 4:31 PM PST
    • 4 likes
  25. Skyler Coolidge

    MichaelKennedy (View Comment):
    Among other things, only one Union soldier was accused of rape and was hung.

    And I’ve a bridge to sell you that goes right over the Hudson River.

    • #25
    • November 15, 2019, at 4:33 PM PST
    • 1 like
  26. Boss Mongo Member

    Skyler (View Comment):

    Vectorman (View Comment):

    Gen. William Tecumseh Sherman, for his strategic blow against Atlanta and the deep South during the Civil War.

    Gen. Matthew Ridgeway’s brilliant counterattacks during the Korean War.

    Gen. David Patraeus’ intellectual’s knowledge and first-hand combatant experience in countering guerrillas to Iraq.

    Oh, that’s too much.

    How in the name of all that is good did Patraeus get on that list? He’s a fine man, but he hardly saved western civilization. It is a sin to put him on such a pedestal, inviting others to properly knock him off of it.

    Ridgeway is another fine general, but let’s face it, he didn’t win the war. He didn’t even take back all of what was South Korea before the war started. Again, he has been done a disservice.

    As for Sherman, I am flabbergasted that he would be listed. Sherman was a buffoon and mentally ill. General Thomas saved his butt too many times, and then Sherman wandered off to kill civilians, and violate all current laws of war. His foray into the southern states did more to embitter southerners than anything, and impoverished much of the south until very recently. And that’s before we even discuss the lack of sense in even fighting that war at all. Democrats back then were almost as bad as now, just not communists yet. They latched onto the slavery issue as a pretext for a gross expansion of federal power.

    This is one of the problems I have with Hansen. He’s a one-hit wonder. He started with a fantastic theory about how the Greeks were heavily influenced by their farming culture, especially of olives and the nature of their husbandry. Donald Kagan cited his theory as a brilliant insight that is missed by many modern historians who don’t live on farms. Since that book, he has proven to be a mediocre professor. I’m not going to say I’m smarter than him, I’m sure I’m not, but he has over played his scholarly credentials way past his abilities. This list is exhibit A for that conclusion.

    Yeah, @skyler, we get it. You’re all butt-chapped ’cause Chesty Puller isn’t on VDH’s list.

    • #26
    • November 15, 2019, at 4:35 PM PST
    • 4 likes
  27. Randy Webster Member

    I’m not saying that what MacArthur did politically was wise, or even reasonable; but the invasion at Inchon was a masterstroke.

    • #27
    • November 15, 2019, at 4:45 PM PST
    • 4 likes
  28. Skyler Coolidge

    Boss Mongo (View Comment):

     

    Yeah, @skyler, we get it. You’re all butt-chapped ’cause Chesty Puller isn’t on VDH’s list.

    Chesty is a bit over rated, but not by much. It’s very strange, did you know that there is no audio of his voice on the internet? At least I can’t find any.

    I prefer generals who win without a lot of fanfare. For instance, the US loves to remember the battle of Normandy, even though so many troops landed in the wrong spot, and they royally messed up and a lot of men got killed as a result. The Brits executed better and had a lot less drama. But drama gets attention. That is human nature.

    Sherman was a terrible general, and had cockamamy battle plans. Thomas was low key, and wasn’t big on self-promotion. He resented that he outranked everyone else but was always given subordinate positions. He took that insult with class, however, and decided to go along with it without complaint because he wanted to be a team player. His reward was to be smeared and slighted by Sherman and Grant repeatedly in their memoirs, despite all his decisive successes. I’ll take the Rock of Chickamauga over showmen like Sherman any day. He died before he could write his own memoirs, if indeed he ever would have. Having died so soon after the war, the hagiographies were written without him, and he was relegated to an undeserved obscurity as a result.

    • #28
    • November 15, 2019, at 4:58 PM PST
    • 2 likes
  29. Skyler Coolidge

    Randy Webster (View Comment):

    I’m not saying that what MacArthur did politically was wise, or even reasonable; but the invasion at Inchon was a masterstroke.

    True, and so effective that the paired amphibious assault on the east coast was rendered unnecessary. The real culprit was MacArthur though. It was his oversight of the forces in the Pacific that were so poorly trained, so poorly equipped, and so poorly motivated that they were over run so easily at the start of the Korean War. Mac was too focused on his own egotistic status as the replacement of the Japanese God Emperor, that the army in his theater was in a shambles, and had to be rescued by Marines who were shoved into the Pusan Perimeter piecemeal all across the front to keep the army from collapsing.

    • #29
    • November 15, 2019, at 5:02 PM PST
    • 1 like
  30. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher

    I rather think the reaction to Sherman proves the point.

    • #30
    • November 16, 2019, at 2:18 AM PST
    • 1 like