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Thread: BG SLA Marshall Combat Leader Interview Collection

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    Default BG SLA Marshall Combat Leader Interview Collection

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    Brigadier General S.L.A. Marshall Combat Leader Interview Collection
    The SLA Marshall combat leader interviews are presented in the tradition of BG S.L.A. Marshall’s battlefield group interviews of WWII and Korea combat veterans. To our StrykerNet audience, we provide candid, quality feedback in the form of viewable/ downloadable video files from those who have experienced the rigors of combat and associated leader challenges. Our approach focuses on leader interviews so that we may better inform those responsible for developing the Army’s current and future leaders. Interviews are presented in their entirety. Upon request, we will provide excerpts appropriate for leader team discussion at any level.
    Transcripts of the interviews are also available on the site.

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    Council Member Tom Odom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jedburgh View Post
    Stryker Net (AKO Log-In Required)

    Brigadier General S.L.A. Marshall Combat Leader Interview Collection

    Transcripts of the interviews are also available on the site.
    I do wish the Army would quit resurrecting SLAM as an icon for useful military history. He was severely flawed in his collection and his analysis was largely driven by his ego. Yet somehow we continue to raise him up like a flag to show that we are serious about history. Good message. Wrong flag.

    Tom

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Odom View Post
    I do wish the Army would quit resurrecting SLAM as an icon for useful military history. He was severely flawed in his collection and his analysis was largely driven by his ego. Yet somehow we continue to raise him up like a flag to show that we are serious about history. Good message. Wrong flag.

    Tom
    I'd tend to agree with you, from what I know of him and his AARs, but have you read the book Past as Prologue, about the use of history by the military profession? Lieutenant-General Van Riper, USMC, praises SLAM and says Men Against Fire was the cornerstone of his self-PME.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Granite_State View Post
    but have you read the book Past as Prologue, about the use of history by the military profession? Lieutenant-General Van Riper, USMC, praises SLAM and says Men Against Fire was the cornerstone of his self-PME.
    Perhaps, but I would also argue that SLAM's slipshod research methods and the other flaws pointed out by Tom make him more useful as a starting point or an example of how not to conduct certain types of historical research. There are better examples out there.

    I did read Past as Prologue and found it an interesting study. But the Army needs to move beyond SLAM, even if that means going outside the service. Lynn, for example, has written well about the Army at the turn of the century.
    Last edited by Steve Blair; 10-30-2008 at 02:48 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Blair View Post
    Perhaps, but I would also argue that SLAM's slipshod research methods and the other flaws pointed out by Tom make him more useful as a starting point or an example of how not to conduct certain types of historical research. There are better examples out there.

    I did read Past as Prologue and found it an interesting study. But the Army needs to move beyond SLAM, even if that means going outside the service. Lynn, for example, has written well about the Army at the turn of the century.
    Truth is the Army has some GREAT historians both military and civilian whose work far outshines what SLAM did. This is truly a marketing issue and it is in the Center for Military History's interest to step up--pushed by CSI and West Point. Yet I have felt for decades that Army history has done the soft shoe; never really getting out there and pushing say the Leavenworth Paper series beyond the Army. CMH has dragged along like a slow ox-drawn wagon train for decades and the Army has had to do Certain Victory, On Point 1, or On Point 2 histories on the fly by committee.

    Men Against Fire both made SLAM and undid SLAM because once out he had to keep looking for results at once similar and more spectacular. I just think historians like Roger Spiller, Chris Gabel, or any number of others have had greater effect on the professional development of our leaders than SLAM ever did.

    Tom

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Odom View Post
    Men Against Fire both made SLAM and undid SLAM because once out he had to keep looking for results at once similar and more spectacular. I just think historians like Roger Spiller, Chris Gabel, or any number of others have had greater effect on the professional development of our leaders than SLAM ever did.

    Tom

    The scholarly community with an axe to grind has used SLA Marshall and his research as a huge bludgeon to attack the military in general. I did a review on a book and used commentary from SWJ/C to find the necessary materials to take apart another academics view point. http://selil.com/?p=193

    SLA Marshall is far from an untested source and there is a substantial literature that has sprung up to refute him. In my research I even found substantial evidence that SLA Marshall rejected his own findings.
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    Moderator Steve Blair's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Odom View Post
    Truth is the Army has some GREAT historians both military and civilian whose work far outshines what SLAM did. This is truly a marketing issue and it is in the Center for Military History's interest to step up--pushed by CSI and West Point. Yet I have felt for decades that Army history has done the soft shoe; never really getting out there and pushing say the Leavenworth Paper series beyond the Army. CMH has dragged along like a slow ox-drawn wagon train for decades and the Army has had to do Certain Victory, On Point 1, or On Point 2 histories on the fly by committee.
    This is quite true. There are some fine internal history products done by the Army, but you really have to dig to find them and they are not well-advertised. The AF, on the other hand, tends to put its internal history products front and center. In some cases the quality is uneven, but AU certainly puts 'em out for all to see (and usually with free PDF download versions to boot).
    "On the plains and mountains of the American West, the United States Army had once learned everything there was to learn about hit-and-run tactics and guerrilla warfare."
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    In my research I even found substantial evidence that SLA Marshall rejected his own findings.
    I routinely lose arguments with the man in the mirror as I shave but we always make up

    Tom

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Odom View Post
    I routinely lose arguments with the man in the mirror as I shave but we always make up

    Tom
    My problem is that sucker in the mirror keeps cutting me. I'm taking a switch blade to our next altercation.
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    All opinions are mine and may or may not reflect those of my employer depending on the chance it might affect funding, politics, or the setting of the sun. As such these are my opinions you can get your own.

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    Default Roger and Chris are

    outstanding historians (as is their sometimes elusive colleague Dr [LTC ret.] Loren Kije). Their former colleague - recently retired - Dr. Larry Yates has just published (CMH) a superb history of the Panama crisis. Entitled THE U.S. MILITARY INTERVENTION IN PANAMA: ORIGINS, PLANNING, AND CRISIS MANAGEMENT JUNE 1987 - DECEMBER 1989 it is the first of two volumes. Truth in advertising: I was one of Larry's sources and reviewed the manuscript for publication. I got the final product just recently and started scanning the parts I knew but then I was hooked. It is both definitive and eminently readable!!!!!!

    Cheers

    JohnT

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    Quote Originally Posted by John T. Fishel View Post
    outstanding historians (as is their sometimes elusive colleague Dr [LTC ret.] Loren Kije). Their former colleague - recently retired - Dr. Larry Yates has just published (CMH) a superb history of the Panama crisis. Entitled THE U.S. MILITARY INTERVENTION IN PANAMA: ORIGINS, PLANNING, AND CRISIS MANAGEMENT JUNE 1987 - DECEMBER 1989 it is the first of two volumes. Truth in advertising: I was one of Larry's sources and reviewed the manuscript for publication. I got the final product just recently and started scanning the parts I knew but then I was hooked. It is both definitive and eminently readable!!!!!!

    Cheers

    JohnT
    I like Spike's stuff, too, as well as Spike the historian. I once carried him up the stairs from the basement when his asthma was kicking him. We had a pizza and a movie club with SJ Lewis, Tom Huber, Spike, and me for 3 years every Sunday. He was on my LP comittee and encouraged me to write my memoirs after Rwanda. His LP on DomRep is unmatched. I am sure his Panama work is equally good.

    Tom

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    I don't know a lot about SLAM, but I do remember from Band of Brothers that Richard Winters was not impressed with SLAM's book Night Drop.
    "Pick up a rifle and you change instantly from a subject to a citizen." - Jeff Cooper

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    Default Tom

    The Panama stuff is even better! POWERPACK (DR) is a classic that LATAM historians refer to but Larry (aka Spike) was in Panama before Just Cause went down and on the night it began and after. One of the interviews he did with me was over pizza (he bought) in the new Panama police HQ - I had the duty that night.

    Cheers

    JohnT

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    How does this group feel about Les Grau for an Army in-house historian/theorist?
    Reed
    Quote Originally Posted by sapperfitz82 View Post
    This truly is the bike helmet generation.

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    Quote Originally Posted by reed11b View Post
    How does this group feel about Les Grau for an Army in-house historian/theorist?
    Reed
    Les is top notch on the Afghan Wars and Chechnya.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Odom View Post
    I do wish the Army would quit resurrecting SLAM as an icon for useful military history. He was severely flawed in his collection and his analysis was largely driven by his ego. Yet somehow we continue to raise him up like a flag to show that we are serious about history. Good message. Wrong flag.

    Tom
    Aye, aye and aye. I so agree with this. SLAM was more often wrong than right, and his pontificating lead to bad ideas that the US army is still lumbered with.

    Unforgivably he denigrated Ardant Du Piq, who made better and sounder observations about human performance in combat, and most of SLAMs "research" was opinion gathering, which has possibly compounded the error, especially when you look at David Grossman's early work.
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    Default Beyond the title of the site...

    The battle videos produced by this site are pretty good and cover several of the battles / campaigns that the 3rd Stryker Bde were involved in from 2006-2007. They are worth a download, a beer and 25-30 minutes to hear what some of the young leaders, (NCOs are included too) have to say about operations in Iraq. You certainly will not hear about Hafia St, Baqubah or Zarqa in other places. (Veritas did publish a 2 part article on the battle of Zarqa from the SF perspective)

    I wish some of this stuff could come out from behind the firewall so a larger group could view it.

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