Dear Grumpy Advice on Teaching in Today's Classroom Leadership of the highest kind

One of Americas Greates, That you probably never heard of, (Something for the History Teachers out there!)

The following essay was initially published in Military Review 68 (October 1988): 27− 37. This journal is
published at the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. Slight modifications
and corrections have been made in the version below.
George C. Marshall and the Education of Army Leaders
By Larry I. Bland

At all levels of United States society today, there is a strong current of concern with “leadership”—its present quality
and the hope that it can be improved via the education of the younger generation. Every student of the past’s great
captains can produce a lengthy catalog of important leadership characteristics. Certainly high on such lists is the
leader’s dedication, beyond mere technical expertise, to an understanding of his calling and of its role in society. Less
often perceived, perhaps, by those who study the careers of military leaders is that many such leaders have
consciously and subtly sought to teach their subordinates, peers, and sometimes even their superiors. In part, this
teacher role sprang from the leaders’ determination to disseminate certain views and, in part, the mantle was thrust
upon them by those who wished to accompany, assist, or emulate their journey.
One of the Army’s greatest teacher-leaders was George C. Marshall. He was a tolerant, broad-minded student of the
history and development of his profession, who sought to teach the lessons he learned to the younger generation of
ground and air leaders. For these reasons, and most importantly because he served as chief of staff of the US Army
between July 1939 and November 1945, his world view acted as a kind of filter through which flowed the military
ideas and values of a large number of World War II Army and Air Force leaders.
Marshall is not usually remembered for being a teacher. In fact, he was formally employed as a classroom instructor
on only three occasions, two of them quite brief. But his principal biographer, Forrest C. Pogue, has stated that
Marshall might have made a great teacher, that “he himself sometimes regretted that he had not set out on an
academic career,” and that at least “a good part of his impact on the Army was actually as a teacher.” [1]
Student and Teacher, 1897-1938
Good teachers were generally good students, but Marshall was a late bloomer, discovering his scholastic ability five
years into his Army career. Reminiscing near the end of his life, Marshall used such terms as “humiliating” and
“painful” to describe the quality of his public school accomplishments in the 1880s and 1890s (always excepting his
interest in history). There was some concern in his family that young George’s demonstrated academic weakness
might preclude his attending the Virginia Military Institute (VMI). He gained admission but began and remained a
mediocre scholar, finishing 15th of the 33 graduates in the class of 1901. Asked many years later what academic
subjects he liked best there, he was unable to think of even one. [2]
In military matters Marshall was VMI’s top cadet, swiftly adapting to the rugged, austere lifestyle. Rigorous selfdiscipline enabled him to accept the rules, the routine, and most of the nonsense as part of “the game”—challenges to
be endured if they could not be mastered. This tolerance and stoicism were constant traits throughout his life.
After graduation, he briefly taught at Virginia’s Danville Military Institute. In February 1902, he was commissioned,
married, and departed for the Philippines to begin the second phase of his military education with the 30th Infantry,
which he described as “the wildest crowd I had ever seen before or since.” [3] Unlike most infantrymen of that era,
Marshall soon concluded that the path to professional success lay through the Army’s school system. When his
regiment could find no one senior who was interested in attending the Infantry and Cavalry School at Fort
Leavenworth, Kansas, Second Lieutenant Marshall was permitted to matriculate at Leavenworth in September 1906—
the lowest-ranking member of his class. [4] Throughout the rest of his Army career, Marshall sought to help bright
young officers whose intellectual development was blocked by low rank and restrictive rules, particularly by having
them sent to Army schools.
Marshall’s enrollment at Leavenworth happened to coincide with the arrival of Major John F. Morrison, a teacher
who remained Marshall’s lifelong hero. Others taught regulations and technique, Marshall thought; Morrison “spoke
a tactical language I have never heard from any other officer.” He taught Marshall not merely fundamental principles
—students could quote those by rote from the book—but how to recognize these principles in action. He emphasized
the elements of uncertainty and surprise on the battlefield—Carl von Clausewitz’s “fog of war”—and how these
would undermine tactical plans derived from mere application of ossified book solutions. Marshall and his fellow
students were proud to call themselves “Morrison men.” [5] Labeled by some disparaging critics as the “Leavenworth
clique,” Marshall and others similarly trained prevented the U.S. Army from being a bloody embarrassment to this
country in France in 1918.
At the end of his two years as the number one student, Marshall was retained at the school for an additional two years
as a teacher. In the summers he was an instructor at National Guard encampments. For most Regular Army officers,
this duty was distasteful at best, but Marshall thrived in the outdoors instructing troops. The guardsmen were anxious
to learn and he had a flair for teaching. His empathy with the Guard’s problems, understanding of its limitations,
ability to motivate the men to strive for improvement, and belief in the Guards’ crucial position as the foundation of
America’s ground forces clearly distinguished him from the sort of Regular the Guard normally encountered.
He spent a year (1911–12) as inspector/instructor with the Massachusetts volunteer militia. One of his most important
duties was establishing an educational system and developing courses for the militia’s instruction. Marshall later
observed, “The teacher was being educated at the same time he was instructing. But they accepted everything I put
up, and I was able to experiment.” [6] He learned to lead officers and developed the knack for fast, accurate staff
Marshall’s initial lessons in civil-military relations beyond the militia came immediately before and after World War
I. He was kept out of General John J. Pershing’s Punitive Expedition and was directed to establish, supply, and create
instructional programs for civilian military training camps. That year (1916–17) provided him with a close look at a
grossly unprepared nation and Army hurriedly embarking on a major war. Marshall received a crash-course in
dealing with civilians. [7]
By the time he returned from France in September 1919, Marshall’s stature in the Army had changed from a brilliant
but untried “young turk” on the periphery of power to a seasoned staff planner and aide to General Pershing at the
center of Army life. Marshall spent the next five years (1919–24) mainly in Washington assisting Pershing in
winding up the American Expeditionary Forces (AEF) affairs, and then as chief of staff, Pershing’s office manager
and right-hand man. For Marshall, this period constituted a postgraduate education in national and War Department
Following three years with the 15th Infantry in China, Marshall returned in mid-1927 to teach at the Army War
College, despite not being a graduate. When his wife suddenly died, friends arranged for the distraught Marshall to
have his pick of three choice assignments. He chose the education position, becoming head of the academic
department at the Infantry School at Fort Benning, Georgia. Over a period of nearly five years (1927–32), he did for
the Infantry School what his former mentor, Morrison, had done for Leavenworth—he undermined its complacency,
renewed its enthusiasm, and trained a new generation of ground force leaders who were destined to run a major war.
By Pogue’s count, in Marshall’s years at Fort Benning, 150 future generals of World War II were students, 50 more
were instructors, and hundreds became future field grade officers. They comprised a cadre of “Marshall’s men.” [8]
Infantry School head Marshall and his
department heads for the 1930−31
school year. Seated, L-R: Morrison C.
Stayer, Joseph W. Stilwell, GCM,
William F. Freehoff, Edwin F.
Harding. Standing: Howard J. Liston,
Omar N. Bradley, Emil W. Leard,
Fremont B. Hodson.
Detailed to Chicago as senior
instructor for the Illinois National
Guard (1933–36), he threw himself
into the enormous task of re-educating
and renewing the enthusiasm of that organization. His success in this potentially career-endangering assignment
enormously strengthened his status and authority in the Guard. <>
Marshall instructs the umpires for his Illinois
National Guard command post exercise in the
Chicago vicinity, January 1936.
In October 1936, he finally received his first
star and was sent to Vancouver Barracks,
Washington. Ever the teacher, Marshall
successfully struggled to remake his Civilian
Conservation Corps district’s lackadaisical
educational system. He told a friend: “I am
struggling to force their education, academic
or vocational, to the point where they will be
on the road to really useful citizenship by the
time they return to their homes. I have done over my corps of civilian educators, and their methods, until I think we
really have something supremely practical.” [9]
Marshall had made a point of writing letters of recommendation for deserving Civilian Conservation Corps
students seeking jobs in the civilian sector. In this Vancouver Barracks CCC District newspaper cartoon
published June 1, 1938, the CCC men return the favor by giving Marshall their recommendation on his
departure to his new job in the War Department.///
Shortly afterward, Marshall moved to a War Department desk; nine months later, he was President Franklin D.
Roosevelt’s choice to head the Army. The nation was fortunate that Marshall became chief of staff on the eve of
World War II, because, of all the potential candidates for that crucial post in 1939, he was probably best suited
intellectually and temperamentally to carry out the two great educational tasks of the day. He had to recast the
traditionally conservative, isolated, and impecunious coalition known as the U.S. Army into an instrument capable of
defending the nation against modernized, motivated, and highly efficient enemies. Simultaneously, he had to
convince skeptical soldiers and civilians that they had to achieve unprecedented cooperation—a modus vivendi—
toward that end.
American Attitudes Impact on the Army
During his career, Marshall had learned numerous lessons concerning the functioning of American society, the
operations of the Army, and the interrelation of the two. He developed a philosophy and methods of operation that
enabled him to expand the stature and authority he had achieved within the Army into civil society and then into
international relations.
Marshall consciously sought to understand the workings of America’s peculiar democratic society rather than seeking
refuge from it in professional aloofness. He concluded that the successful officer not only had to be tolerant of the
dissonance and disorganization of civil society, but also to be politically astute enough to convince the amateur
soldiers, politicians, reporters, and intellectuals, as well as the proverbial man in the street, that the professional
military was an acceptable part of the system and that it possessed insights and methods essential to national survival.
Like any thoroughgoing military professional, Marshall was a student of military history. But his interests went
beyond operations; he was fascinated also by the politics—painful and embarrassing mobilization, wartime
interaction with populace and press, and demobilization, with its cutbacks, criticisms, and efforts at reform. He had
studied the Spanish-American War assiduously and he had experienced World War I intimately. Marshall thought he
saw a cyclical pattern in that the prewar level of the Army’s combat readiness and thus subsequent performance was
always far below the public’s expectations. Then, the postwar political results of this included severe criticisms of
Army leaders and attempts to legislate a reformed system. Finally, a few years of budget cutting and a general lack of
public interest in the military led to excessive reductions in strength and materiel until the next crisis. [11]
At least by the early 1920s, Marshall had come to believe that a major cause of this cycle was the American
acceptance of the Minuteman myth—the idea that the nation was populated by the woods-smart descendants of
Indian fighters who, upon mobilization, could take their trusty hunting rifles down from the pegs over the fireplace,
assemble for some rudimentary training, then deploy to rout any foe. A key assumption of this myth was that training
good infantry was relatively easy. Performing the role of Revolutionary War hero Friedrick W. A. von Steuben
would be the small Regular Army, whose ranks the volunteers would swell. [12]
Given its high cost in lives, money, and frustration, why had the Minuteman myth persisted? Marshall thought a good
part of the answer lay in the biased and poorly taught history lessons Americans learned in school, which conditioned
voters’ and politicans’ understanding of contemporary military affairs. American military history depicted in the
textbooks included too much flag-waving, concentrated too much on the later stages and glorious outcomes of the
nation’s wars and appeared to imply that America would always win, even if initially unprepared. Ignored were the
wastefulness, humiliations, and disasters of the beginnings—the results of poor military organization and lack of
preparedness due to popular, but false, peacetime economies. An accurate depiction of the full course of America’s
wars, he told educators in 1923 and 1939, might help to break the cycle of frantic expansion and ossifying penury,
somnolence and impatience, that had been the Army’s lot since the Revolution. [13]
Americans’ “impatience to overcome the delays of past indifference can be a destructive force,” Marshall said in
1940. In their enthusiasm for shortcuts, Americans expected too much of technology and machines, presumed that
the nation’s great industrial base guaranteed speedy delivery of military hardware, underestimated the difficulties of
training an effective ground combat team and generally depreciated the foot soldier. Probably the most common
refrain Marshall voiced as chief of staff was the long time needed to deliver quality soldiers and materiel—there was
no royal road to either. In 1917, he later recalled, huge sums were swiftly appropriated to develop air power. Little
was said about the great difficulties to be overcome; instead, a great publicity campaign led people “to expect
stupendous results in short order.” Disillusionment resulted, with its inevitable political fallout. Marshall made
continual efforts to prevent the recurrence of this cycle while he was chief of staff. Calmness and balance were his
watchwords. He insisted that “we should promise less than we expect to achieve; we should resist ideas or
enthusiasms that will not stand the searching test of common sense.” [14]
The Army’s Role in Society
A teenager once asked Marshall what were the components of a good character. He replied, “sincerity, integrity, and
tolerance.” [15] Perhaps the key to his great success was tolerance, that breadth of spirit and viewpoint that accepts
diversity. His experience and political savvy caused him to reject anticivilian or antidemocratic beliefs and
stereotyping. Those little-minded officers—and civilians—who cherished their own griefs and prejudices, in
Marshall’s view failed to understand the Army’s role in American society. [16] By chance and choice, Marshall was
frequently involved closely with civilians during his career. He welcomed and encouraged these contacts and
strongly encouraged fellow officers to do likewise. [17]
Marshall understood the American political system and was himself an expert, if reluctant, politician. [18] His
relations with Congress and the press were probably better—and undoubtedly of greater moment for the nation—than
those of any other Army chief of staff. He worked hard and successfully to create and maintain an image of integrity,
honesty, and competence among politicians and reporters. He was acutely aware that the Army’s public image had
morale, political, and financial—and thus ultimately strategic—implications. [19] When Marshall was chief of staff,
one of the swiftest ways for an officer to damage his career was to be at fault in a row with either the news media or
Congress. [20]
Marshall was determined
not to hide harsh truths
from the nation’s leaders: i.
e., that the “Theory of an
Early Axis Collapse” was
unlikely. On October 20 and
21, 1943, he delivered
detailed briefings in the
auditorium of the Library of
Congress to Senators and
Congressmen on the current
state of the war. The
Philadelphia Bulletin
printed this cartoon on
October 22.
Typical of Marshall’s
philosophy was his 1942
response to a colonel’s protest against congressional criticism of the Army: “I think you have allowed yourself to be
unduly irritated by the squeakings of Democracy. If we were to take issue with the various illogical or totally
unjustified public statements that are made over the radio, in the press, or on the floors of Congress, there would be
little time for the business of conducting the war and I think a loss rather than a gain in prestige. My fear has always
been that sooner or later I would lose my temper through profound and continued irritation, but I have been saved
that misfortune so far by the realization of what a serious mistake it would be.” [21]
Since the nation’s founding, a constant question has been what kind of Army is needed. Marshall thought it naive to
expect the determinedly civilian-minded American people to maintain a large professional army. He recognized in
1917 that the Regular Army had to play the role of trainer and administrative-technical expert for the citizen-soldier
army that would fight any future wars. Political reality dictated that this had to work if the boom-bust cycle of Army
development was to be broken. His own experience with the National Guard and the 1st Division in 1917–18
indicated that it could be made to work. [22]
It was clear to Marshall that the professional Army’s duty was to serve as the primary repository of up-to-date theory
and practice. The Regulars bore the primary burden of making the Reserve system work. But during the 1920s and
early 1930s, the Regular Army shrank, promotion stagnated, command opportunities grew rarer, and equipment grew
scarcer and more obsolescent. Many officers slipped into mental somnolence and had trouble wakening as conditions
improved after the mid-1930s. Marshall struggled against the intellectual coagulation of the “cast-iron Regular.”
Marshall made the Infantry School the fountainhead of Army reform and his students and protégés quietly spread the
word. “We bored from within without cessation during my five years at Benning,” Marshall stated several months
after leaving the Infantry School in mid-1932. Quietly and gradually, so as not to arouse the opposition to action,
Marshall brought in, as faculty, open-minded men recently returned from troop duty. He hammered incessantly on
the theme of simplicity: no long lectures containing only school-approved doctrine, no exercises dependent upon
possessing elaborate maps, no beautifully detailed orders stifling initiative, no overblown intelligence estimates that
harried commanders had no time to read, and no field procedures so complex that tired citizen-soldiers could not
perform them. He said, “get down to the essentials, make clear the real difficulties, and expunge the bunk,
complications and ponderosities.” Campaigning against the “colorless pedantic form” used in manual writing, he
insisted that it be replaced by clear, concise language written to impress National Guard and Reserve officers, not just
Regulars. [23]
For success as a commander of citizen-soldiers fighting a war of movement, officers needed “a knowledge of how to
operate by means of brief, concise oral orders, based on the ground you can see or on maps with very little detail . . .
a high degree of cleverness . . . constant tactical readiness . . . speed of thought, speed of action and direction and
speed of operation.” [24] These were not commonplace ideas in an era in which most officers were devoted to the
minutely detailed, lengthy orders that took so long to work out but which had brought them such good grades at
Marshall’s three years with the Illinois National Guard provided him with a proving ground for his training ideas. It
was not easy, but his ideas regarding the primacy of the citizen-soldier in the American military system smoothed the
way for a reform of Guard training in Illinois. Concentrating his efforts on educating Guard officers, he emphasized
the efficient use of the limited armory training time, insisted that Guard leaders demand of themselves and their men
a more soldierly spirit, and sought more realistic drills. He worked especially hard to create staff teams, which he
considered the Guard’s greatest weakness. He took officers out of the classroom and held command post and field
exercises—always with a surprise or a twist—using nearby parks and military reservations. In this way, he succeeded
in keeping Guard interest stirred despite the debilitating effects of Depression-level funding. [25]
Marshall also pressed the War Department to assign a higher caliber of Regular officers as Guard instructors and to
support them better. And, as always, Marshall kept up his unceasing suggestions for the improvement of Army
literature for Guard use and his equally unceasing war on the paperwork demanded of the Guard by the Army.
Implementing His Ideas
Implicit in all of Marshall ideas in the 1920s and 1930s regarding training were views of the kind of war that the
United States would fight next. Future war, he concluded, would be more typical of the fluid first weeks in 1914 than
of the siege-like conditions that developed later in World War I. Moreover, the United States would not again enjoy a
year or two to train and organize behind an ally’s lines, but would be in the struggle from the beginning and would
have to fight for several months with the forces immediately at hand.
Marshall believed that much of the support for the inappropriate or wrong-headed values and methods against which
he struggled in the Army lay in the erroneous conclusions drawn by the typical AEF veteran from his brief, frenetic,
and narrowly circumscribed service against a declining German army in mid to late 1918. Especially irritating to one
who struggled in 1917 to create a fighting unit from the green, disorganized mob called the First Division were these
latecomers’ naive conclusions regarding the likely efficiency of American forces at the beginning of a war. [26]
Experience in France demonstrated to Marshall that it was essential for higher commanders to be physically capable
of withstanding the rigors of war. Exhausted leaders made errors and damaged not only their own careers but also
their subordinates’ morale. Positive and inspiring leadership was particularly necessary to an army of citizen-soldiers
and this demanded great stamina. Marshall’s rule of thumb in World War II was that a new combat-zone general, of
whatever age, had to have the physical vigor of a fit man of forty-five. [27]
High troop morale was clearly necessary to the strains of a war of movement. Marshall unequivocally and frequently
put officers on notice that he expected them to pay close attention to the quality of their troops’ physical needs,
recreation facilities, and mental and morale activities. He insisted that leaders personally inspect their commands
with morale in mind and not delegate the responsibility or rely solely on paper directives. As chief of staff, he
personally made numerous and lengthy inspection trips by plane, and he insisted that Army inspectors and his own
staff fly frequently to follow up on policies and to maintain contact with the situation in the field. In mid-1941, he
convinced Congress to grant him a contingency fund of $25 million to be used to circumvent the Army’s
cumbersome financial procedures in morale-related expenditures. [28]
Marshall’s experiences in World War I, as Pershing’s aide and as a troop commander, had taught him that as chief of
staff it was crucial that he seek out and promote the best leaders available. It was his job to help them to secure the
services of the best subcommanders and staff and he needed to insulate the commanders as much as possible from
unwarranted interference by the War Department, domestic and Allied politics, and the media in order that they
might concentrate on fighting the enemy. For example, he told General Dwight D. Eisenhower shortly after the North
African landings and repeatedly during the Darlan Affair: “I am doing my utmost to support you by meeting with the
Press, with members of Congress, with State Department and with the President. . . . Do not worry about this, leave
the worries to us and go ahead with your campaign.” [29]
The chief of staff also tried to teach his subordinates the nuances of his conclusions—from long staff experience—
regarding the behavior of staffs. They tended to excess in emulating and reinforcing the commander, they tended to
be too conservative, and they tended to be obsessive about centralizing and “routinizing” business—frequently to the
detriment of staffs and units below them. Good commanders, he insisted, recognized these problems and
compensated. On this last point, perhaps his pet peeve, he wrote in 1938: “Every time I turn my back some staff
officers calls on some poor devil for a report or an extra copy of some more damned papers—and I will not have it.”
He considered it one of his duties as a commander to defend his troops from his staff. In London, in April 1942, a
British friend gave Marshall a copy of a letter, dated about 1810, from the Duke of Wellington in Spain to the British
secretary of state for war. The “Iron Duke” stated that he would be unable to campaign if he “attempted to answer the
mass of futile correspondence” surrounding him; moreover he forbade his officers from “attending to the futile
drivelling of mere quill driving” in the War Office. Marshall sent this document to all the higher officials in the War
Department with the pointed observation: “We could well govern ourselves accordingly.” [30]
Finally, Marshall was determined to teach the necessity of cooperation among the elements of the World War II
coalitions: air-ground, Army-Navy, British-American. An overly suspicious attitude toward other institutions or a
display of excessive partisanship favoring one’s own would damage a commander’s credibility with the Army chief
of staff. In September 1942, for example, Marshall issued a directive to all higher Army commanders to take
“vigorous action . . . to suppress service jealousies and suspicions.” They were enjoined to set a personal example in
public and private conversations “to provide a remedy” for Anglo-American “frictions.” [31] The chief of staff read
all acknowledgments. Not everyone was willing or able to absorb the teacher’s lessons, and a number of officers’
careers suffered accordingly.
Although he fought his greatest battles at desks and conference tables, and his most formidable foes were complexity,
excessive caution, narrow-mindedness and incompetence, Army Chief of Staff George C. Marshall was one of the
greatest warriors of World War II. Powerful men were in awe of him, though he was modest and self-effacing. He
never voted and dismissed any efforts to get him to run for office, but he thoroughly understood and approved of the
American democratic system, despite its occasional “squeakings.” He was a bureaucrat who hated desks and
paperwork, a general who never led troops, a warrior who would win a peace prize. He is still a great hero in the
Army, and the Air Force considers him a founding father. The Navy named a submarine after him, and he was, as his
chief biographer demonstrated, truly the organizer of allied victory in World War II. His meticulousness as a student
and his authority as a teacher were crucial to his success.
[1]. Forrest C. Pogue, George C. Marshall: Education of a General, 1880–1939 (New York: Viking Press, 1963),
102–3. [Return to note 1]
[2]. George C. Marshall Interviews and Reminiscences for Forrest C. Pogue, 3d ed. (Lexington, Va.: George C.
Marshall Foundation, 1996), 95. [Return to note 2]
[3]. Ibid., 125. [Return to note 3]
[4]. Pogue, Education of a General, 93–102; The Papers of George Catlett Marshall, ed. Larry I. Bland and Sharon
Ritenour Stevens (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1981− ), 1:36–37 and 704 (hereafter cited as Papers of
GCM). [Return to note 4]
[5]. Ibid., 1:45–46. See also Timothy K. Nenninger, The Leavenworth Schools and the Old Army: Education,
Professionalism, and the Officer Corps of the United States Army, 1881–1918 (Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press,
1978), 91–96. [Return to note 5]
[6]. Papers of GCM, 1:57. [Return to note 6]
[7]. Ibid., 1:97–101. [Return to note 7]
[8]. Pogue, Education of a General, 248–49. [Return to note 8]
[9]. Papers of GCM, 1:586. [Return to note 9]
[10]. Samuel P. Huntington, Soldier and the State: The Theory and Politics of Civil Military Relations (New York:
Vintage Books, 1956), 283–87. He observes that this attitude was not uncommon among Army professionals
immediately following World War I, but asserts that seeking an identity of interests between civilian and professional
military societies was a naive and quickly abortive endeavor. Marshall clearly would not have agreed. [Return to note
[11]. Marshall speech to the National Association of Headmasters of Boys’ Preparatory Schools, 10 February 1923,
Papers of GCM, 1:220; Speech to the Academy of Political Science, New York City, 10 November 1942, ibid.,
3:434. [Return to note 11]
[12]. Marshall Interviews, 472− 73. “I think the common belief is that the most quickly created instrument of war is
the infantry regiment. Yet, I would say that we have lost more lives and been delayed more in battle by the
acceptance of this doctrine than for any other purely military reason.” Marshall speech to the National Rifle
Association, 3 February 1939, Papers of GCM, 1:693. [Return to note 12]
[13]. Marshall speeches to the National Association of Headmasters of Boys’ Preparatory Schools (10 February
1923) and to the American Military Institute/American Historical Association (28 December 1939), ibid., 1:220–21,
2:124. [Return to note 13]
[14]. Marshall speeches to the National Aviation Forum (27 May 1940) on CBS radio (16 September 1940), and at
Trinity College (15 June 1941), ibid., 2:226–27, 310 and 535.
[Return to note 14]
[15]. Marshall to Sharlene Adams, 16 March 1950, George C. Marshall Papers, George C. Marshall Research
Library, Lexington, Virginia (hereafter cited as GCMRL/GCM Papers) (American Red Cross). [Return to note 15]
[16]. Marshall Interviews, 251. Marshall spoke on this theme on several occasions after World War II: at the
National War College (20 June 1947); at West Point graduation (5 June 1951) and on Newton Baker’s life
(December 1951). These addresses are in the GCMRL/GCM Papers speech files for Secretary of State, Secretary of
Defense, and Retirement. [Return to note 16]
[17]. Pogue, Education of a General, 307. One example of this occurred at Vancouver Barracks, Washington.
Marshall arrived in 1936 to find virtually no interaction between the military community and Portland-area civilians.
He and his wife made a point of giving speeches, joining clubs, encouraging civilian visits to the post, and so on.
Marshall gave detailed advice on maintaining relations with the local civilians to his replacement, George Grunert,
(Marshall to Grunert, 5 December 1938), Papers of GCM, 1:660-61. See also Marshall’s letters to Frank McCoy (16
May 1937) and Roy D. Keehn (24 January 1938), ibid., 1:537 and 577. [Return to note 17]
[18]. One member of his staff in 1941 observed that Marshall possessed “an uncanny eye for the political angle of
every problem.” Paul M. Robinett Diary, 30 January 1941, GCMRL.
[Return to note 18]
[19]. Mark S. Watson, Chief of Staff: Prewar Plans and Preparations, a volume in United States Army in World War
II (Washington: GPO, 1950), 7–8. Watson notes the importance and uniqueness of Marshall’s congressional
relations, particularly during the mobilization period. A large file in the Marshall papers is full of directives to the
War Department’s Bureau of Public relations. [Return to note 19]
[20]. This is not to say that Marshall refused to defend his subordinates. In the famous Missouri National Guard “yoohoo” incident of 1941, when congressmen and reporters were having fun jumping on General Ben Lear, Marshall
defended his subordinate’s actions publicly and frequently. See Marshall’s comments on this affair, relations with
Darlan (1942), the Patton slapping incidents (1943), and his relations with the press generally in Marshall Interviews,
486–88. See also his 1941 letters to Douglas Southall Freeman and Westbrook Pegler, Papers of GCM, 2:393–94,
451–52. [Return to note 20]
[21]. Marshall to Col. Vincent M. Elmore, 16 September 1942, Papers of GCM, 3:358 Marshall’s tolerance for the
press was well known, and he was highly respected by most reporters. [Return to note 21]
[22]. Marshall was a friend of John McAuley Palmer, the well-known advocate of a Swiss-type citizen-soldier army.
There are numerous letters between them in the first two volumes of the Papers of GCM. Quote in Marshall to
Palmer, 17 January 1929, ibid., 1:339. [Return to note 22]
[23]. Marshall to Stuart Heintzelman, 4 and 18 December 1933, ibid., 1:409–16. These letters contain the best
summary of Marshall’s values, activities, difficulties, and continued frustrations at the Infantry School. He wrote to
Heintzelman, commanding general at Leavenworth and an American Expeditionary Forces friend, to urge that
Benning ideas be applied to Leavenworth’s schools. [Return to note 23]
[24]. Undated lecture on tactics, ibid., 1:338. [Return to note 24]
[25]. Ibid., 1:448–150, 472–73, 486, 584–85 and 587. [Return to note 25]
[26]. George C. Marshall, “Profiting by War Experience,” Infantry Journal 18 (January 1921): 34–37; NBC Radio
Address, 5 August 1940, Papers of GCM, 2:281–82. [Return to note 26]
[27]. Marshall Memorandum for General McNair, 1 October 1942, Papers of GCM, 3:377− 78. [Return to note 27]
[28]. Ibid., 2:505–7 (contingent fund); Forrest C. Pogue, George C. Marshall: Ordeal and Hope, 1939–1942 (New
York: Viking Press, 1966), 114–17. [Return to note 28]
[29]. In a memorandum to Sir John Dill, Marshall summarized his messages to Eisenhower, 31 December 1942,
GCMRL/GCM Papers (Pentagon Office, Selected). [Return to note 29]
[30]. Papers of GCM, 1:657, 591, and 531. The Wellington letter is in Memorandum for the Deputy Chief of Staff
(and others), 24 April 1942, ibid., 3:170. [Return to note 30]
[31]. Marshall Memorandum for Higher Commanders, 11 September 1942, ibid., 3:354-56.

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