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The American Expeditionary Force (AEF) was name given to the American force sent to fight in World War I beginning in the summer of 1917. The AEF was commanded by General John Pershing who had previously served with distinction in the Philippines and in Mexico, where he led the force that fought against Pancho Villa. Pershing insisted, to the chagrin of other Allied officers, that American troops be kept under his command, and that of other American officers. The AEF was very well-supplied, and perhaps as well-trained as could be expected, and their involvement in the war, which included fighting in such battles as Mihiel, Belleau Wood, and especially the Allied offensive at the Meuse-Argonne Forest, helped shift the tide of the war in favor of the Allies, though most of their number did not arrive until the beginning of 1918.
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