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GENERAL LESLEY J. McNAIR: Unsung Architect of the US Army

GENERAL LESLEY J. McNAIR: Unsung Architect of the US Army
by Calhoun, Mark

1-208660

George C. Marshall once called him 'the brains of the army' but General Lesley J. McNair (1883-1944), a man so instrumental to America's military preparedness and Army modernization, remains little known today, his papers purportedly lost, destroyed by his wife in her grief at his death in Normandy.

Because McNair contributed so substantially to America's war preparedness, this complete account of his extensive and varied career also leads to a reevaluation of US Army effectiveness during WWII.

McNair graduated 11th of 124 in West Point's class of 1904 and rose slowly through the ranks like all officers in the early 20th century. He was 31 when World War I erupted, 34 and a junior officer when American troops prepared to join the fight. It was during this time, and in the interwar period that followed the end of World War I, that McNair's considerable influence on Army doctrine and training, equipment development, unit organization, and combined arms fighting methods developed.

By looking at the whole of McNair's career-not just his service in WWII as chief of staff, General Headquarters, 1940-1942, and then as commander, Army Ground Forces, 1942-1944-Calhoun reassesses the evolution and extent of that influence during the war, as well as McNair's, and the Army's, wartime performance.

This in-depth study tracks the significantly positive impact of McNair's efforts in several critical areas: advanced officer education; modernization, military innovation, and technological development; the field-testing of doctrine; streamlining and pooling of assets for necessary efficiency; arduous and realistic combat training; combined arms tactics; and an increasingly mechanized and mobile force.

1 vol, 432 pgs 2015 US, UNIVERSITY PRESS OF KANSAS
NEW-dj, available early June 2015 ......$40.00

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Updated as of 5/23/2024

ABBREVIATIONS: dj-dust jacket, biblio-bibliography, b/w-black and white, illust-illustrations, b/c-book club addition.
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