- Series: Great Generals
- Hardcover: 224 pages
- Publisher: St. Martin's Press; 1 edition (January 30, 2007)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1403971358
- ISBN-13: 978-1403971357
- Product Dimensions: 5.9 x 0.3 inches
- Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 18 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,451,507 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
LeMay: A Biography (Great Generals) 1st Edition
Use the Amazon App to scan ISBNs and compare prices.
This month's Book With Buzz: "The Lying Game" by Ruth Ware
From the instant New York Times bestselling author of blockbuster thrillers "In a Dark, Dark Wood" and "The Woman in Cabin 10" comes Ruth Ware’s chilling new novel, "The Lying Game." See more
Customers who bought this item also bought
Customers who viewed this item also viewed
From Publishers Weekly
The general in charge of the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Curtis Emerson LeMay witnessed the beginning of the age of nuclear weaponry. As commander of the Strategic Air Command during the Cold War, he saw its consequences in the escalating tension with Russia and his campaigns in North and South Korea. Tillman (author of 40 books including Warriors) calls LeMay one of "the chilliest of cold war Republicans," having made the dubious choice to become the 1968 running mate of segregationist George Wallace. Though LeMay claimed to have joined the campaign out of concern for opponent Richard Nixon's foreign policy, the move permanently damaged his reputation. "It is not recorded that anyone ever accused Curtis LeMay of charisma," observes Tillman, adding, "Perhaps no other American military leader of the 20th century was so successful without possessing a charismatic personality." That may help explain why the book includes significantly more discussion of B-29s and B-52s than it does anecdotes or direct quotes that illustrate LeMay's character or personal life. Well informed and clear, this somewhat dry account will interest air force enthusiasts, though LeMay's charmlessness is unlikely to win over many casual readers. (Feb.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
This is actually the first full biography of one of the architects of cold war victory, affording perspective that the general's as-told-to autobiography, Mission with Lemay (1965), could not. Tillman emphasizes the most distinguished part of Lemay's career, his tactical innovations over Europe, his command of the B-29s against Japan, and his helming of the Strategic Air Command, 1948-57. Lemay lacked the tact and talent for interservice cooperation, and so was probably a poor choice for air force chief of staff, but he was abundantly skilled at administration and at keeping up morale--aptitudes not universally found in lead-from-the-front combat leaders. He was also politically naive, as his final public appearance as George Wallace's running mate attests, but Tillman argues persuasively that many of the anecdotes on which the demonization of Lemay was constructed were either apocrypha or outright fictions. This will be the best reference on an undeniably major American military leader for some time. Roland Green
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
Browse award-winning titles. See more
Top customer reviews
Barrett Tillman has done a superb job at bringing one of the lesser known generals of WW 2 and the post WW 2 era to life. When talking of great American military leaders of WW 2, LeMay's name is not one that is easily on the tip of most military history buffs tongues. Yet along with Chester Nimitz, he perhaps played one of the greatest roles in winning the war and shaping the future of American airpower. His leadership in establishing long range, daylight precision bombing during the war was key in breaking the industrial might of Nazi Germany. Through statistical analysis he was able to develop the tactics that proved the critics of daylight bombing wrong while getting the maximum performance from his aircrews and planes. When transferred to the CBI theater of operations he took a sagging B-29 program and made it successful against logistical handicaps that would have caused others to throw in the towel. As head of the B-29 command charged with bringing the Japanese to their knees, LeMay's tenacity ruled the day.
While not the first commander of the Strategic Air Command (SAC), it was General LeMay who built SAC into the greatest command within the United States Air Force. His highly analytical mind was responsible for creating a deterrient force that would eventually lead to the collapse of the Soviet Union. Under his leadership the United States Air Force via SAC was able to create a truly global reach through air and now space forces.
For those Air Force veterans who served in SAC, LeMay's story is one that should have been taught to us when we arrived at our first SAC duty station. The command and control concepts that General LeMay put in place ensured that any member of SAC could perform at the highest operational capacity with the highest degree of proficiency at any SAC base they were assigned to.
LeMay as Tillman rightly points out was a great lead from the front general. Every thing that made Curtis LeMay a great operational commander worked against him as he served an extrordinary long term in Washington, DC as Vice Chief and later Chief of Staff of the US Air Force. Tillman through LeMay's eyes sheds light on the highly byzantine world of politics that our military leadership must contend with. It is through LeMay's perspective that we see the military as well as strategic short sightedness of presidents Kennedy and Johnson who in LeMay's mind bungled the Bay of Pigs as well as VietNam.
Tillman's work is part of a series that covers the lives and careers of great military leaders. Some may view this book and others in the series as light weight in nature. My take is that this book will inspire the reader to learn more about America's Greatest Air Force General.
This books is chalked full of great anecdotes of awesome and inspiring leadership. LeMay was a real no-nonsense, mission-focused, tolerate no BS kinda guy. While gruff, he took recommendations, even criticisms from subordinates and implemented ideas when they seemed effective. He was at the helm for some of the most unseemly elements of America's history including the firebombing of Tokyo and Enola Gay's flight over Hiroshima, but he never blinked. He did what he thought was necessary to keep the world free from dictatorship.
He reshaped America's concept and use of airpower and technology.
This book is a nice blend of facts and stories that tells not only the history, but also the mystery of what was LeMay. I'm enamored.
The book does have one small issue. On page 22, in the chapter which discusses his assignment to 8th Air Force in England, there is a map of Europe which oddly enough shows the geopolitical situation between German Reunification in 1990 and Slovenia's independence in 1991. WHY this map would be picked to illustrate this book I have no idea. The map on page 54 seems to accurately portray WWII Asia during the period Lemay was there.
A good book, although nothing more than an introduction.