Command Missions - A Personal Story [Illustrated Edition]
Includes 2 charts, 1 portrait and 30 maps.
Few generals achieved the reputation won by General Lucien Truscott during his time in the American Army during World War Two; it was the opinion of the future President General Eisenhower that Truscott was second only to the legendary General Patton as a battlefield commander. Refusing all personal accolades in press releases, General Truscott, was as tough as they come, determined and cool under fire. His autobiography stands as one of the great books written by any officer who served the Allied cause during the Second World War.
He led the 60th Infantry and 66th Armored Regiments during the invasion of French North Africa, his formations benefitted hugely from his tough training methods that saved lives under fire. His next command at the head of the 3rd Infantry Division would cement his reputation, forcing his troops over some of the harshest mountains in Europe in Sicily and routing pushing the Germans off the island. Truscott then led his men ashore the Italian mainland at Salerno and then again in the landings at Anzio...
By 1944 the Allied command considered that Truscott was the foremost amphibious expert in the European theatre and gave him command of the vital landings in southern France; his inspiring leadership and determined forceful handling of his troops led to such success that the Germans were bundled back out the French province very rapidly opening the port of Marseilles to Allied supply ships. Truscott was renowned for his abilities as a general, a motivator of men and a shrewd commander who was determined to seize and keep hold of the initiative; all of these qualities were needed when he took over command of the Fifth Army in Italy in Dec. 1944. Pushing his troops forward expertly to force the German defenders out of their entrenched lines in the mountains in Northern Italy and would have continued their victorious drive into Germany but by this time Nazi Germany had surrendered.
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I've only read a small portion of the book, but I'm impressed with the clear-headed candor and recollections of this broadly-acknowledged battle commander. To add a little context: For the past few years, I've been studying the formation of the U.S. WWII Army and its movements throughout North Africa and the Mediterranean Theater to follow my father's journey. (In his role, I'm sure that he had passing acquaintance with Gen. Truscott through his military specialty and being on General Alexander's staff.) I was drawn to this account because Gen. Truscott is also given tribute in Rick Atkinson's "Liberation Trilogy" and more specifically, "Day of Battle." I will buy the book.
CHAPTER SEVEN THE INVASION OF SOUTHERN FRANCE
CHAPTER EIGHT AN ARMY COMMAND 366
CHAPTER NINE THE GERMAN OCCUPATION 415
CHAPTER TEN AFTERTHOUGHTS 436
REQUEST FROM THE PUBLISHER 457