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Indiana University Press
Thunderbolt: General Creighton Abrams and the Army of His Times / Edition 2

Thunderbolt: General Creighton Abrams and the Army of His Times / Edition 2

by Lewis SorleyLewis Sorley


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General Creighton Abrams has been called the greatest American general since Ulysses S. Grant, yet at the time this book was first published in 1992, he was little known by most Americans. For more than four decades, in three wars and in challenging peacetime assignments, Abrams demonstrated the skill, courage, integrity, and compassion that made him a legend in his profession. Thunderbolt is the definitive biography of the man who commanded U.S. forces in Vietnam during the withdrawal stage and for whom the army's main battle tank is named. With a new introduction by the author, this edition places the complex and sophisticated Abrams and his many achievements in the context of the army he served and ultimately led, and of the national and international events in which he played a vital role. Thunderbolt is a stirring portrait of the quintessential soldier and of the transformation of the U.S. Army from the horse brigades of the 1930s to the high-tech military force of today.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780253220028
Publisher: Indiana University Press
Publication date: 02/26/2008
Pages: 420
Sales rank: 758,070
Product dimensions: 6.12(w) x 9.25(h) x (d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Lewis Sorley, a third-generation graduate of West Point, served in Vietnam, in NATO forces, and as a Pentagon staff officer. He has taught at West Point and the U.S. Army War College, and has written widely on military affairs and national security. He lives in Potomac, Maryland.

Table of Contents

1. To Be a Soldier
2. Preparing for War
3. Entering Battle
4. Relief of Bastogne
5. Finishing it off
6. Doctrine and Tactics
7. Occupied Germany
8. In Korea
9. Fort Knox and the Pentagon
10. Germany and Division Command
11. Civil Rights Crises
12. Corps Command
13. Vietnam Buildup
14. Deputy Commander in Vietnam
15. Tet 1968
16. The 206,000 Troop Request
17. Taking Command
18. A Very Human Touch
19. Vietnamization and Pacification
20. Murder and the Green Berets
21. Cambodian Incursion
22. In the Midst of Battles
23. Invasion of Laos
24. Easter Offensive
25. Setting the Course
26. Rebuilding an Army
27. Final Days
Selected Bibliography
Other Sources

What People are Saying About This

Derek Leebaert

"The re-issue of Sorley's classic biography of one of the foremost commanders in U.S. history is to be welcomed by a new generation scholars, military officers, and policy analysts."

Stephen Ambrose

"Lewis Sorley has told the Abrams story with verve, sensitivity, and insight."

Ret.), former NATO Commander - General John R. Galvin (U.S. Army

"Sorley's superb insight shows General Abe for what he was—the predominant leader of soldiers and the clearest symbol of integrity in a time when his example was most needed. A book that must be read—and not just by soldiers."

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Thunderbolt: General Creighton Abrams and the Army of His Times 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
ChrisElyea on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is a full biography of General Abrams. Abrams was a leader in the development of armoured doctrine before, during, and after World War II. He made a name for himself by leading from his tank as a battalion commander in General George S. Patton's Third Army. The M-1 tank was named in his honour.Abrams succeeded General William Westmoreland as commander of U.S. forces in Vietnam. Abrams served as Vice Chief of Staff of the Army before that war and Chief of Staff after it.The author does a very good job expressing Abrams' leadership style. Sorley is also able to convey the mood of each situation. There is quite a contrast between the difficult but glorious armoured charge across Europe in WW2 and the gloom of command as the American public withdrew their support for South Vietnam.Sorley is unable to remain neutral all the time, which makes the book a bit less enjoyable. While he does mention several times that Abrams was blunt, gruff, and even grumpy, Sorley always tries to show this in a positive way, e.g. by remarking how much people appreciated his brutal honesty. Instead of letting the reader form an opinion, Sorley continually asserts that Abrams was a great man. This is unnecessary because Abrams' record speaks for itself. Also, Sorley often disparages Westmoreland. He does not provide any direct evidence that Abrams shared this opinion, only that Abrams favoured a different approach.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago