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War by Land, Sea, and Air

War by Land, Sea, and Air

Donald Kagan
Frederick Kagan
Copyright Date: 2010
Published by: Yale University Press
Pages: 384
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  • Book Info
    War by Land, Sea, and Air
    Book Description:

    In this book a retired U.S. Army colonel and military historian takes a fresh look at Dwight D. Eisenhower's lasting military legacy, in light of his evolving approach to the concept of unified command. Examining Eisenhower's career from his West Point years to the passage of the 1958 Defense Reorganization Act, David Jablonsky explores Eisenhower's efforts to implement a unified command in the U.S. military-a concept that eventually led to the current organization of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and that, almost three decades after Eisenhower's presidency, played a major role in defense reorganization under the Goldwater-Nichols Act. In the new century, Eisenhower's approach continues to animate reform discussion at the highest level of government in terms of the interagency process.

    eISBN: 978-0-300-15568-6
    Subjects: History, Political Science

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-viii)
  3. Series Foreword
    (pp. ix-xii)
    Donald Kagan and Frederick Kagan

    War has been a subject of intense interest from the beginning of literature around the world. Whether it be in the earliest literary work in the Western tradition, Homer’sIliad, or the Rigvedic hymns of ancient India, people have always been fascinated by this dangerous and challenging phenomenon. Few can fail to be stirred by such questions as: How and why do wars come about? How and why do they end? Why did the winners win and the losers lose? How do leaders make life-and-death decisions? Why do combatants follow orders that put their lives at risk? How do individuals...

  4. Acknowledgments
    (pp. xiii-xiv)
  5. Introduction: The Past as Prologue
    (pp. 1-4)

    In october 1999 General Pervez Musharraf installed himself as head of Pakistan after an army coup. The Clinton administration protested immediately. The general’s response, as recounted by Dana Priest of theWashington Post, was not to the president, nor to Secretary of State Madeline K. Albright, Defense Secretary William S. Cohen, or even the US ambassador in Islamabad, but to the commander in chief (CINC) of US Central Command, General Anthony C. Zinni. “Tony,” Musharraf began his phone call to Zinni, “I want to tell you what I’m doing.”¹

    The incident illustrates that by the end of the twentieth century...

  6. Part I Formative Years, 1903–1941

    • CHAPTER ONE Reform and Education, 1903–1928
      (pp. 7-20)

      Dwight eisenhower arrived at the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York, in June 1911 after a three-day journey across half a continent from his hometown of Abilene, Kansas. The US Army at the time consisted of 4,388 officers and 70,250 enlisted men. Approximately a quarter of this force was stationed abroad on “foreign service” in American possessions ranging from the Philippines and Hawaii to the Panama Canal Zone and Puerto Rico. The remainder was scattered throughout the United States. The Military Academy appeared then much as it does today: a combination of monuments and gray, gothic buildings...

    • CHAPTER TWO Reform and Experience, 1929–1941
      (pp. 21-32)

      After the army war college, Eisenhower returned to the Battle Monuments Commission in order to revise his guidebook, this time to be based on his personal examination of the battle and burial areas. Mamie insisted that he take the assignment despite his protestations: “I’m an Army officer not a doggone Baedeker.”¹ The family moved to Paris for fourteen months—time that Eisenhower used to walk the battlefields and examine in detail the killing grounds of the First World War, still fresh in their depressing desolation a decade after the Armistice. From this experience, he emerged with a deeper understanding of...

  7. Part II Wartime Unified Command, 1941–1942

    • CHAPTER THREE Beginnings of Combined and Joint Command, December 1941–January 1942
      (pp. 35-46)

      Eisenhower served his second tour in the War Department from December 1941 to June 1942. It was a period of great intellectual growth in which his theoretical concepts concerning unity of command and unity of effort at the highest political and military levels were honed in the reality of his first encounters with the complexities of establishing and dealing with unified Allied commands. His stated qualifications for these challenges were “those of the average hard-working Army officer of my age,” certainly a self-effacing analysis of stunning inaccuracy.¹ For in fact the fifty-two–year-old brigadier general was supremely well qualified for...

    • CHAPTER FOUR Unified European Theater Command, February–June 1942
      (pp. 47-60)

      The united states Joint Chiefs of Staff came into existence in an even more unplanned fashion than the Combined Chiefs of Staff. Stark, King, Marshall, and Arnold had been in attendance on 21 December 1941 at the White House meeting preceding the arrival of the British contingent at the Arcadia Conference. They were present at all subsequent sessions of that conference and at the first meeting of the Combined Chiefs on 23 January 1942. Soon it became more logical and convenient to refer to the American group as the United States Chiefs of Staff, or, in keeping with the agreed...

  8. Part III Wartime Unity of Command and Effort, 1942–1945

    • CHAPTER FIVE Unity in Theory: London, June–November 1942
      (pp. 63-74)

      On 24 june 1942 Eisenhower assumed command of the 53,390 officers and men of the European Theater of Operations, US Army (ETOUSA), with the mission to prepare for American participation in a cross-Channel invasion of France (SLEDGEHAMMER) later in the year.¹ The new commander was somewhat overwhelmed by his position; hardly surprising for someone so little removed in time from the rank of lieutenant colonel and still awed sufficiently by the authorities with whom he was dealing to be delighted by autographed photographs from Roosevelt, Marshall, and King. This did not go unnoticed by his British colleagues, one of whom...

    • CHAPTER SIX Testing the Theory: North Africa, November 1942–May 1943
      (pp. 75-93)

      On monday, 2 november 1942, Eisenhower and his party left for an airfield near Bournemouth to begin the flight to the TORCH command post at Gibraltar. The invasion of North Africa began on 8 November with three major amphibious assaults under command of American officers. The Western Task Force under Major General George S. Patton sailed directly from the United States to land on the Atlantic coast of French Morocco. The Center Task Force, sailing from the United Kingdom and composed of American and British troops under Major General Lloyd Fredendall, landed at Oran in western Algeria. The Eastern Assault...

    • CHAPTER SEVEN Unity in Practice: Sicily and Italy, May–December 1943
      (pp. 94-105)

      May to december 1943 was a time in which Dwight Eisenhower continued to learn by hard experience the complexities of a unified command structure in a joint and combined environment. There were still problems remaining from the Casablanca Conference command arrangements in terms of coordinating land, sea, and air forces through his three British deputies. These problems were compounded as the buildup for the cross-Channel invasion (OVERLORD) began to be given priority over Eisenhower’s Mediterranean command. That priority was not always self-evident, however, since it was not until the Teheran Conference at the end of this period that agreement on...

    • CHAPTER EIGHT The Lessons of Unity Applied: London, January–May 1944
      (pp. 106-121)

      The lessons and experiences of unified and combined command from the North African and Italian campaigns formed the basis for Eisenhower’s plans and conduct of the war in Europe from January 1944 to May 1945. Command and control of air assets remained a major issue from the earlier Allied amphibious operations, an issue that the supreme commander was determined to solve for OVERLORD. This was complicated by unique targeting problems in northwest Europe that had not existed in the Mediterranean landings. At the same time, despite agreement on OVERLORD, there were lingering Anglo-American differences on the role of Allied operations...

    • CHAPTER NINE The Lessons of Unity Vindicated: Normandy to the Elbe, June 1944–May 1945
      (pp. 122-138)

      On d-day, even general Morgan, who had been involved in every aspect of the OVERLORD planning, was “astounded at the . . . vastness of the operation” that integrated land, sea, and air forces into the largest joint and combined operation in history.¹ Participating in the invasion were eleven thousand airplanes, seven thousand ships, and four thousand landing craft carrying two hundred thousand soldiers and twenty thousand vehicles—all attacking fortified beaches over a fifty-mile front. On the American beaches alone, the plan was to land the equivalent of two hundred trainloads of troops, followed in the next two weeks...

  9. Part IV Peacetime Unification, 1945–1950

    • CHAPTER TEN Unified Command in Washington, June 1945–July 1946
      (pp. 141-158)

      In the closing months of Eisenhower’s occupation duties in Europe, the unification issue reemerged on the national agenda, beginning a struggle on his part to establish the concept of unified command at the highest level of government that would preoccupy him until the final years of his presidency. In the wake of World War II, the issue took on more prominence and urgency due to the rapidly evolving concept of what constituted American national security. While fighting that conflict and making preparations for the peace, US leaders had expanded the concept and used its terminology for the first time to...

    • CHAPTER ELEVEN Creation of the National Security State, July 1946–March 1950
      (pp. 159-182)

      The standoff on the unification issue created only a momentary lull. In July 1946 the Senate Joint committee investigating the Pearl Harbor attack published its final report, in which an entire section was devoted to unity of command. All the evidence adduced thus far, the report began, revealed “the complete inadequacy of command bymutual cooperationwhere decisive action is of the essence.”¹ The congressional report led inevitably to the broader issue of unification by concluding that the dual structure of the chain of command was a major cause of the debacle. From Pearl Harbor the Army chain had run...

  10. Part V Peacetime Unity of Effort and Command, 1950–1952

    • CHAPTER TWELVE The Great Debate, April 1950–March 1951
      (pp. 185-200)

      Eisenhower’s return to Columbia University would not last long. Events had been in train for several years in Europe and throughout the world that would inexorably draw him back to the scene of his greatest military triumph, where once again he would face many of the problems of unity of command and effort that he had experienced in World War II, this time rendered more complex in a peacetime environment of reduced European budgets combined with the residual grievances of the American unification effort. During 1948, in response to Soviet moves in Czechoslovakia and Berlin, five Western nations formed the...

    • CHAPTER THIRTEEN The European Command Test, February 1951–May 1952
      (pp. 201-218)

      Eisenhower’s initial task was to create a headquarters and a command organization for his disparate NATO forces. To this end, General Gruenther traveled from the North Atlantic Council meeting at Brussels to Paris on 18 December 1950 with five US officers. The SACEUR’s creation of the command structure was tied into his “bottleneck” strategy for the defense of Europe that he had outlined to President Truman and his cabinet on 31 January. On 20 March, NATO’s Standing Group approved SACEUR’s establishment of Northern, Central, and Southern subordinate commands to be located, respectively, in Oslo, Fontainebleau, and Naples. That day, Eisenhower...

  11. Part VI Peacetime Unification and Unity of Effort and Command, 1952–1958

    • CHAPTER FOURTEEN Executive Reform and the New Look: Strategic Strains on the Concept of Unified Command, 1953
      (pp. 221-240)

      Dwight eisenhower entered office as president of the United States with a blend of military-political experience unmatched by any of his predecessors, including George Washington and Ulysses S. Grant. In nonstop assignments since he entered the War Department in late 1941, the new chief executive had developed extraordinary insight into the grand strategic problems of integrating all facets of military power with the political, economic, and psychological elements of national power. Consequently, he began his administration with a clear conception of what he later called “logical guidelines for designing and employing a security establishment.”¹ The conception was tied to the...

    • CHAPTER FIFTEEN The Strains Deepen: The President and the JCS, 1954–1956
      (pp. 241-257)

      The new look national strategy rested on the basic assumption that the global situation would not deteriorate appreciably. Beginning in 1954, however, and extending through Eisenhower’s first term, external developments began to turn discussion toward ends and ways rather than means in order to determine what national security goals were possible in the context of the new international environment. The French defeat in Indochina, the growing Soviet nuclear capability, and the crises in Suez and Hungary contributed to the president’s deteriorating relationship during his first term with the JCS over issues that ranged from global strategy and the defense budget...

    • CHAPTER SIXTEEN Impetus from Space: New Life for the Unified Command Concept, January 1957–January 1958
      (pp. 258-274)

      On 21 january 1957 Dwight Eisenhower started his second term as president. The first year of the second term began with increased assaults on his fundamental New Look policy. And by the middle of the year he would also have to adjust to important changes in his national security team. In the fall, he would contend with the Little Rock crisis and, most important, with the international and domestic reaction occasioned by the Soviet launch ofSputnik, the first satellite orbited in space. TheSputnikcrisis posed a severe challenge to the administration. But it also offered an opportunity for...

    • CHAPTER SEVENTEEN Reform Proposals and Congressional Gauntlet, January–June 1958
      (pp. 275-294)

      Eisenhower’s public commitment to defense reorganization in the state of the union address put further pressure on the secretary of defense. On 17 January, McElroy announced the members who had agreed to sit on the Pentagon reform advisory group, much to the relief of the president, who stressed the amount of “political heat” the administration was receiving on the issue.¹ There were no surprises in the group. Eisenhower had discussed each member with Rockefeller, McElroy, and Brundage since the fall and was pleased with what he considered “a distinguished body of broadly experienced individuals,” who, he believed, would add more...

    • CHAPTER EIGHTEEN Executive-Legislative Reform: The 1958 Defense Reorganization Act, June–December 1958
      (pp. 295-306)

      By the time the senate hearings on the House bill began on 17 June, Bryce Harlow and Defense Counsel Robert Dechert were already working with the Senate committee on possible compromises. In his capacity as Senate Armed Services Committee chairman, Senator Richard Russell of Georgia was open to attempts at bipartisan efforts despite the partisan outcome that had been so disastrous for the administration in the House.

      The proceedings ended on 9 July. On 17 July the Senate Armed Services Committee reported out substitute legislation that was passed unanimously by the Senate the next day. Vinson promptly accepted the compromise...

  12. Epilogue The Unified Command Legacy: Goldwater-Nichols and Beyond
    (pp. 307-326)

    On wednesday, 5 may 1982, General Andrew J. Goodpaster appeared before the Investigations Subcommittee of the House Armed Services Committee to testify concerning reorganization proposals for the Joint Chiefs of Staff. In the almost quarter of a century since the Defense Reorganization Act of 1958, Goodpaster had served as assistant to the JCS chairman, director of the joint staff, deputy commander in Vietnam, and supreme Allied commander, Europe. After retiring as a four-star general, he had been recalled to active duty temporarily as the superintendent at West Point, with the rank of lieutenant general, to help his alma mater through...

  13. Notes
    (pp. 327-378)
  14. Index
    (pp. 379-386)