The Generals' War: The Inside Story of the Conflict in the Gulf

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Little, Brown, 1995 - History - 551 pages
In a unique combination of journalism and military expertise, Michael R. Gordon, chief defense correspondent for The New York Times, and retired three-star Marine Corps General Bernard E. Trainor provide a definitive, behind-the-scenes account and analysis of the planning and execution of the Persian Gulf War. The inside story of the war is a tale of politics and clashing military cultures: while one war was being waged against Iraq, another was being fought among the generals themselves. Drawing on interviews with senior allied officials in the Persian Gulf, Western Europe, and the United States, The Generals' War offers unvarnished portraits of top military commanders, as well as new disclosures about the conflicts and power struggles within the anti-Iraq coalition and the American high command. The Air Force believed that wars could be decided through strategic bombing. The Army saw the war as an opportunity to apply its doctrine of maneuver warfare. The Marine Corps approached the Gulf with a history of expeditionary warfare and amphibious assault. The Navy remained aloof from Central Command, preferring to act on its own. Although General Colin Powell and General H. Norman Schwarzkopf were tasked with developing a unified plan from these separate, sometimes conflicting agendas, they never fully harmonized the war plans. As a result, half of Iraq's Republican Guard forces got away. Three and a half years after what was considered a decisive victory, some of the same Iraqi Republican Guard forces that the allies had failed to destroy again menaced Kuwait, forcing President Clinton to order American troops back to the Persian Gulf to prevent a second Iraqi invasion. Saddam Hussein wasentrenched and unbowed. The Persian Gulf War was an incomplete success.

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THE GENERALS' WAR: The Inside Story of the Conflict in the Gulf

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A candid and gripping look at military leaders interacting with one another and with sensitive allies under enormous pressure during the Gulf War. Using recently declassified documents, New York Times ... Read full review

The generals' war: the inside story of the conflict in the Gulf

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If the Vietnam War was conducted by politicians in Washington, the war for Kuwait was, according to New York Times correspondent Gordon and retired general Trainor, our "generals' war." The authors ... Read full review

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About the author (1995)

Bernard Edmund Trainor was born in a Manhattan, New York on September 2, 1928. After graduating from high school, he enlisted in the Marine Corps in 1946 as a private. He received a bachelor's degree in history from Holy Cross College in 1951 and a master's degree in history from the University of Colorado in 1963. He was an infantry platoon commander in the Korean War and served two tours in Vietnam, as an adviser to a Vietnamese special operations group and later as a battalion commander. Upon his promotion to lieutenant general in 1983, he became the deputy chief of staff for plans, policies, and operations at Marine Corps headquarters in the Pentagon. He retired from the Marines in July 1985. He was the military correspondent for The New York Times from 1986 to 1990 and an analyst for ABC News and NBC News. He and Michael R. Gordon wrote three books entitled The Generals' War: The Inside Story of the Conflict in the Gulf, Cobra II: The Inside Story of the Invasion and Occupation of Iraq, and The Endgame: The Inside Story of the Struggle for Iraq, From George W. Bush to Barack Obama. He died from cancer on June 2, 2018 at the age of 89.

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