NPR : News

Filed Under:

Remembering Gen. Schwarzkopf, 'Military Hero Of His Generation'


Army Gen. Norman Schwarzkopf, right gets a ceremonial sabre from Cadet First Capt. Douglas P. McCormick of Harrisburgh, Pa., on Wednesday, May 15, 1991 cadet brigade review at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, NY. Schwarzkopf died Dec. 27.
(AP Photo/Ron Frehm)
Army Gen. Norman Schwarzkopf, right gets a ceremonial sabre from Cadet First Capt. Douglas P. McCormick of Harrisburgh, Pa., on Wednesday, May 15, 1991 cadet brigade review at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, NY. Schwarzkopf died Dec. 27.

The death Thursday of retired Gen. H. Norman Schwarzkopf — "Stormin' Norman" — has prompted many looks at the legacy of the American commander who led coalition forces during Operation Desert Storm in 1991, which pushed Saddam Hussein's Iraqi Army out of Kuwait.

Schwarzkopf was 78. He:

-- "Presided over the swift and devastating 1991 military assault on Iraq that transformed the Middle East and reminded America what it was like to win a war," the Los Angeles Times writes.

-- "Became the most celebrated U.S. military hero of his generation," says The Washington Post.

-- Was "the nation's most acclaimed military hero since the midcentury exploits of Generals Dwight D. Eisenhower and Douglas MacArthur," adds The New York Times.

On Morning Edition, retired Maj. Gen. Robert Scales Jr., who served with Schwarzkopf and who wrote a history of the Gulf War, told host David Greene that the victory in Kuwait "removed the scar of the Vietnam generation" from officers, such as Schwarzkopf, who had also served in that earlier war.

Schwarzkopf never forgot the Vietnam experience, Scales said, and "spent those 20 years after Vietnam working to rebuild the Army."

The general's "streak of independence" led him to reject some of the early plans for the Gulf War and to demand more forces for the effort, Scales added. And in the end, Schwarzkopf's demands produced a fast, decisive victory.

As for the general's nickname, it was in recognition of his "volatile temper," as Scales said. Schwarzkopf could sometimes speak "quite loudly and bluntly to those who worked for him" if he thought they weren't doing their jobs, said Scales.

Copyright 2012 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR

Writer James Alan McPherson, Winner Of Pulitzer, MacArthur And Guggenheim, Dies At 72

McPherson, the first African-American to win the Pulitzer Prize for fiction, has died at 72. His work explored the intersection of white and black lives with deftness, subtlety and wry humor.
NPR

Oyster Archaeology: Ancient Trash Holds Clues To Sustainable Harvesting

Modern-day oyster populations in the Chesapeake are dwindling, but a multi-millennia archaeological survey shows that wasn't always the case. Native Americans harvested the shellfish sustainably.

NPR

Twitter Just Turned VP Nominee Tim Kaine Into Your Dad

Democratic vice presidential nominee Sen. Tim Kaine introduced himself to America Wednesday night as a fighter, Hillary Clinton's ally and — your dad.
NPR

Writing Data Onto Single Atoms, Scientists Store The Longest Text Yet

With atomic memory technology, little patterns of atoms can be arranged to represent English characters, fitting the content of more than a billion books onto the surface of a stamp.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.