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Major Problems in American Military History: Documents and Essays 1st Edition

John Whiteclay Chambers II, G. Kurt Piehler

  • Published
  • 512 Pages


This volume traces the evolution of the American military, its institutions, strategic doctrines, and technology. The selections provide a social and institutional focus of the "new" military history, and follow the metamorphosis of the militia, the professionalization of the officers' corps, and the course of civilian control of the military.

John Whiteclay Chambers II, Rutgers University

G. Kurt Piehler, University of Tennessee

Note: Each chapter contains Further Reading.
1. Diverse Approaches to American Military History
Russell F. Weigley, How Americans Wage War: The Evolution of National Strategy
Richard H. Kohn, Exploring the Social History of the Military
Alex Roland, Weapons and Technology Drive the American Military
Dennis F. Showalter, The Importance of Battle History
D''Ann Campbell, The Evolving Relationship of Women and Combat
2. The Colonial Era: Native American Versus European State Warfare
1. Governor John Winthrop Recounts the Killing of John Stone and the Treaty with the Pequots, 1634
2. Captain John Underhill Justifies the Attack on Mystic Village, in the Pequot War (1637), 1638
3. Captain John Mason Explains the Decision to Burn the Village (1637), 1638
4. William Apess, a Pequot, Later Denounces the Mystic Massacre (1637), 1831
5. Roger Williams Ponders the Self-Imposed Limitations of Indian Warfare, 1643
6. Colonel George Washington Praises the Virginia Provincial Troops, 1757
Francis Jennings, The Puritans Were the Savages
Adam J. Hirsch, The Tragedy of Conflicting Military Cultures
Don Higginbotham, A Different View of the Evolution of the Militia to the Continental Army
3. The American Revolution: Who Fought and Why?
1. Loyalist Peter Oliver Tells How an American Prisoner of War Justified His Enlistment to His Captors (1775), c. 1777-1781
2. General George Washington Explains His Strategy, 1777
3. Jeremiah Greenman, an Enlisted Man, Recounts the Bloody Battle of Monmouth, 1778
4. Private Joseph Martin Provides the Only Contemporary Account of "Molly Pitcher" (1778), 1830
5. A Militia Company Worries About Indians and Local Safety, 1781
6. Samuel Sutphin, a Black Slave, Tells of His Service in the Revolution (1781-1783) and His Freedom, 1834
7. Sarah Osborn, a Soldier''s Wife, Relates How She Accompanied the Continental Army to Yorktown (1781), 1837
Mark E. Lender, Enlistment: Economic Opportunities for the Poor and Working Classes
Charles Royster, Enlistment: Patriotic Belief in the Cause of Freedom
Gregory T. Knouff, Enlistment: The Complexity of Motivations
4. The New Nation, the Military, and an American Way of War
1. The Articles of Confederation''s Provisions on War and the Military, 1777
2. General George Washington Calls for a Standing Army, 1783
3. The Constitution''s and Bill of Rights'' Provisions on War and the Military, 1787, 1791
4. Antifederalists Fear a Large Military, 1787
5. Thomas Jefferson Advises an Economic Alternative to War, 1793
6. Alexander Hamilton Urges the Need for Defense and War, 1798
7. Andrew Jackson Proclaims War as a Crusade, 1812
John Shy, American Wars as Crusades for Total Victory
Reginald C. Stuart, The Early Republic and Limited War
5. The Army, Professionalism, Jacksonian Democracy, and Manifest Destiny
1. President Andrew Jackson Calls for Removal of the Indians, 1830
2. From "Scarecrow Militia" to Volunteer National Guard Units: Contrasting Lithographs (1836, 1843)
3. First Lieutenant Joseph R. Smith Bemoans Lack of Civilian Respect, 1838
4. General Ethan Allen Hitchcock Agonizes over the Seminole and Mexican Wars, 1840-1848
5. Lieutenant William T. Sherman Disdains Politics, 1844
6. D. L. Goodall, a Tennessee Volunteer, Exults in the Battle of Monterrey, Mexico, 1846
7. Eliza Johnston, an Army Wife, Reports on an Expedition Through Indian Territory, 1855-1856
William B. Skelton, An Officer Corps Responds to an Undisciplined Society by Disciplined Professionalsim
Robert E. May, An Officer Corps Responds to Opportunities for Expansion with Images of Heroic Expeditions
6. Generals, Soldiers, and the Civil War
1. General Robert E. Lee, C.S.A., Puts Forward an Offensive Strategy of Division and Concentration, 1862-1863; To General Thomas J. ("Stonewall") Jackson, April 25, 1862; To Mary Lee (Robert E. Lee''s wife), April 19, 1863; To General John Bell Hood, May 21, 1863; To President Jefferson Davis, June 10, 1863; To General Samuel Cooper, November 4, 1863
2. President Jefferson Davis, C.S.A., Defends His Overall Defensive Strategy, 1862
3. General James Longstreet, C.S.A., Criticizes Lee''s Generalship (1863-1864), 1895
4. H. A. Yellowley, a Southern White Woman, Tells of Slaves Running off to Join the Yankees Who Armed Them, 1862
5. Private James Henry Gooding, a Northern Black Soldier, Fights for Freedom and the Union, 1863
6. General Ulysses S. Grant, U.S.A., Commits the Union Army to Relentless Offensive, 1864
7. General William T. Sherman, U.S.A., Justifies Taking War to the Civilians, 1864
Douglass Southall Freeman, Robert E. Lee: A Brilliant Commander
Alan T. Nolan, Robert E. Lee: A Flawed General
Mark E. Neely, Jr., The Generalship of Grant and Sherman: Was the Civil War a Modern "Total" War? A Dissenting View
7. Indian Wars on the Great Plains
1. George Bent, Cheyenne Indian, Decries the Massacre of Native Americans by the Colorado Militia at Sand Creek (1864), 1905-1918
2. Colonel Henry Carrington Details the Destruction and Mutilation of Lieutenant Colonel William Fetterman''s Unit (1866), 1867
3. General William T. Sherman Approves Wiping out the Hostiles, 1868
4. Lieutenant Frederick Benteen Depicts the Battle of the Little Big Horn, 1876
5. Iron Hawk, a Hunkpapa Sioux/Lahota Warrior, Recalls the Battle of the Little Big Horn (1876), 1932
6. General George Crook Defends the Indians, 1884
7. Western Artist Frederic Remington Covers Black Troopers Chasing Apaches Through the Arizona Territory, 1889
Stephen E. Ambrose, George Armstrong Custer: A Reckless Commander Brought Down by His Own Mistakes
Robert M. Utley, George Armstrong Custer: A Great Commander Overwhelmed by a Larger Force
8. Armed Forces and an Expanding World Power
1. General Emory Upton Urges a European Style Army (1880), 1904
2. Admiral Mahan Champions Sea Power Through Battleships, 1890
3. Colonel Theodore Roosevelt Boasts of His "Rough Riders" at San Juan Hill (1898), 1899
4. Sergeant William Payne, a Black Trooper, Portrays Black Regulars Helping to Take San Juan Hill (1898), 1899
5. Private Frederick Presher Describes the U.S. Army''s Abuse of Noncombatants in a Filipino Village, 1901
6. Captain J. Hartman Submits an Official Account of the Same Incident, 1901
Russell F. Weigley, Mahan Planned for the Wrong Kind of War and the Wrong Kind of Ships
Stuart Creighton Miller, American Racism and Lawlessness in the Philippines
John M. Gates, Inherent Problems in Counter-Guerrilla Warfare
9. World War I: The Challenge of Modern War
1. President Woodrow Wilson Wants a Drafted Army, Not the U.S. Volunteers, 1917
2. Senator Robert LaFollette Opposes the Draft, 1917
3. Laura Frost, a U.S. Army Nurse, Recalls Her Experiences at the Front in France (1918), 1918-1997
4. General John J. Pershing Insists on a Separate American Army in France, 1918
5. American Expeditionary Force (AEF) Combat Instructions Stress Open-Field Tactics, Not Trench Warfare, 1918
6. Theodore Jones, an AEF Artilleryman, Recounts His First Exposure to Combat, 1918
7. General George Marshall Describes Some Inadequacies of the AEF (1918), 1930
Donald Smythe, The Wisdom of a Separate American Army
David F. Trask, A Separate American Army Impeded a Decisive Blow
10. Innovation in the Interwar Years
1. General William ("Billy") Mitchell, Army Air Service, Calls for a Unified Air Force and Declares Strategic Airpower the Key to Victory, 1920
2. Admiral William Moffett, Naval Aviation Chief, Criticizes Mitchell, 1925
3. Air Corps Tactical School Argues for Tactical as Well as Strategic Airpower, 1931-1932
4. Major General John A. Lejeune, Commandant, U.S. Marine Corps, Proposes a New Mission for the Marines, 1922
5. Joint Army and Navy Board Plans for War with Japan, 1928
6. Colonel George Patton Speculates on the Future of Armored Vehicles, 1936
Michael L. Grumelli, "Billy" Mitchell Espouses a Broad Vision of Airpower
William F. Trimble, Admiral Moffett Adheres to a Cautious Approach
William J. Woolley, Colonel George Patton Only Slowly Embraces Modern Mechanized Warfare
11. World War II: Ground Combat in Europe and the Pacific
1. Private E. B. Sledge, U.S.M.C., Remembers Heavy Fighting at Peleliu (1944), 1981
2. Sergeant Robert Slaughter, U.S. Army, Recalls Struggling Across Omaha Beach in the D-Day Invasion (1944), 1993
3. Private Franklin J. Kneller, a G.I., Reminisces About Near Disaster at the Battle of the Bulge (1944), 1994
4. Private Gertrude Pearson, an Army WAC, Remembers Her Experiences Near the Front in the Ardennes (1944), 1995
5. American Soldiers Explain Their Views Towards Combat (1944), 1949
6. Lieutenant J. Glenn Gray Reflects on Men in Battle (1943-1945), 1959
Martin van Creveld, The German Wehrmacht Was Superior to the U.S. Army
Michael D. Doubler, The Superiority of American GIs
12. World War II: Strategic Bombing in Europe and Asia
1. U.S. Army Air Corps Puts Forward a Strategic Bombing Plan Against Germany, 1941
2. Beneath the Bombs: Nazi Propaganda Minister Joseph Goebbels Bemoans the Impact of the Allied Air Campaign on German Morale and Industry, 1943
3. Lieutenant Chester ("Chet") Szarawarski, an American Bomber Pilot, Recounts a B-17 Bomber Raid, 1944
4. U.S. Strategic Bombing Survey Appraises the Bombing Offensive Against Germany, 1945
5. Beneath the Bombs: Tomizawa Kimi and Kobayashi Hiroyasu, Japanese Civilians, Shudder over the Firebombing of Tokyo (1945), 1992
6. U.S. Strategic Bombing Survey Assesses the Incendiary Bombing of Tokyo and Seven Other Japanese Cities, 1947
Ronald Schaffer, U.S. Strategic Bombing Was Immoral
Conrad C. Crane, The Air Force Struggled to Maintain a Moral Stance
Paul Fussell and Michael Walzer, A Defense of the Atomic Bomb and a Dissent
13. The Korean War and MacArthur''s Leadership
1. Lieutenant Beverly Scott, a Black Infantry Officer, Portrays Desegregation and Combat (1951-1952), 1993
2. Private William Boldenweck, a Marine, Remembers the Inchon Invasion (1950), 1997
3. General Douglas MacArthur Urges a Wider War, 1951
4. President Harry Truman Fires MacArthur, 1951
5. General Omar Bradley, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Faces Congressional Cross-Examination on the Meaning of Limited War, 1951
6. General Matthew Ridgway, MacArthur''s Successor, Keeps the War Limited, 1951
D. Clayton James, In Defense of MacArthur: Miscommunication and Mistreatment
Roy K. Flint, In Defense of Truman: MacArthur Had Limited Vision as a Theater Commander
14. The Vietnam War: Political-Military Decisions and Combat Experiences
1. The Joint Chiefs of Staff Differ with the President over Restraints on the U.S. Role in the Vietnam War, 1964
2. Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara Recommends a Limited Graduated U.S Response in Vietnam, 1964
3. Joint Chiefs of Staff Complain that McNamara''s Proposals Will Not Win the War, 1964
4. National Security Council Endorses the Johnson-McNamara Plan for Limited U.S. Response, 1964
5. White House Issues Optimistic Statement on South Vietnam, 1964
6. Colonel John Paul Vann, a Field Officer, Denounces Inflated "Body Counts," 1968
7. Lieutenant Commander Theodore R. ("T.R.") Swartz Thrills to Aerial Combat and Air Strikes (1967), 1989
8. Specialist 4 Richard J. Ford III, a Black Soldier, Recounts the War and Racism (1967-1968), 1984
9. General William C. Westmoreland, Commander, U.S. Military Assistance Command Vietnam (MACV), Argues that the U.S. Could Have Won, 1976
10. Sergeant Ron Kovic, Marine Veteran, Agonizes over the Meaning of the War and Recalls His Transition from Warrior to Dissenter, 1985
Robert Buzzanco, Senior Military Officers Warned Against Vietnam
H. R. McMaster, Senior Military Officers Were Derelict in Going Along
15. The Persian Gulf War and Peacekeeping in the Post-Cold War World
1. Major Doris Kessler and Major Richard Gabriel, Both U.S. Army, Debate Women in Combat, 1980
2. Captain Jack Thompson, a Fighter-Bomber Pilot, Recalls a Raid on a Nuclear Facility near Baghdad, 1991
3. Captain H. R. McMaster Recounts a Tank Battle in the Desert (1991), 1994
4. General H. Norman Schwarzkopf Defends Strategy and War Aims, 1992
5. U.S. Government Report Assesses the Effectiveness of Air Power During the Gulf War (1993), 1995
6. Secretary of Defense William Perry Justifies Sending U.S. Peacekeepers to Bosnia, 1995
Richard P. Hallion, Land-Based Airpower Brought Victory in the Gulf War
Eliot A. Cohen, Surgical Airpower Alone Cannot Win Wars