H. Norman Schwarzkopf (Magill’s Guide to Military History)
Article abstract: Military significance: Schwarzkopf liberated Kuwait in only one hundred hours of fighting. His lightning moves on the battlefield and diplomatic finesse in handling a diverse, multicultural force established him as one of the great coalition leaders.
H. Norman Schwarzkopf graduated from the U.S. Military Academy in 1956 and was posted with the 101st Airborne Division until 1959. He then joined the elite Berlin Brigade as a general’s aide before taking a leave of absence to obtain a master’s degree in electronics. In 1965, he arrived in Vietnam advising a South Vietnamese airborne brigade. He was closely engaged in combat over the next four years, winning two Purple Hearts and three Silver Stars.
After the Vietnam Conflict, Schwarzkopf resumed his routine military duties; however, like many young officers of his generation, he was determined to rebuild the military’s self-esteem. Several tours of duty in Germany culminated in his promotion to major general commanding the Twenty-fourth Mechanized Infantry Division in 1983. That year a communist coup overthrew the government on the island of Grenada, and President Ronald Reagan ordered him to draw up contingency plans. In October, 1983, Operation Urgent Fury swooped down on the insurgents and their Cuban allies, quickly overrunning Grenada and freeing American hostages. The campaign seemed deceptively easy, but Schwarzkopf delivered a harsh critique of...
(The entire section is 663 words.)
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