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tv   American Soldiers on the Western Front  CSPAN  November 8, 2018 9:44pm-10:47pm EST

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you can find programming on world war i and the centennial all day long. next, we will hear from military the story eric lingle for what it was like to fight on the front of world war i. >> good afternoon and welcome to the eisenhower national historic site, and we are at the site all weekend, and this is an opportunity for the public to learn about this camp training program for tanks, and it was in gettysburg national park as well as world war i reenactors here at the eisenhower farm. edward lengel holds a ba of history from george mason
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university, and received his phd from the university of virginia , where he directed the washington papers project for many years. he served as the chief historian for the white house historical association until just recently, and he has written several books on both george washington and world war i. his latest book will be never and finer company, the men of the great wars lost battalion, which was published in september 2018. he has and leads history throughout europe and the united states, and writes regularly for military quarterly american history, and other history periodicals as well as appearing on national public radio, fox news history channel, and other media outlets. he also appears on the world war i centennial commission's weekly podcast.
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ed, i introduced you to your audience and i will let you do your talk. [ applause ] >> good afternoon to all of you, and to make sure i have this in the right place so that you can hear me. am i getting to the folks in the back? can you hear me all right? i want to make sure that i don't go over time, and i get my clock set up. we are in distinguished company as i am talking to a gentleman who is a great grandnephew of calvin coolidge. he is a retired general and great-nephew of calvin coolidge. and related to admiral sams, and we spoke about that is well. i am something like an eighth or ninth cousin of dwight d eisenhower. as i was joking with another gentleman, we pennsylvania
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germans are all related one way or another is our dance family all came from reading. i have had a passion for the first world war for the past 30 years. this passion originates in the study of history and i have always loved history, and i am related to alvin c york who is a third cousin of mine on my mom's side, so there is a little bit of a connection there, and we had the honor of meeting his family just a few weeks ago, and the great and wonderful people that i am filled with respect, and his grandson is a vietnam veteran, and the site there, and the son and daughter-in-law was there, and they are wonderful people. for me, the connection with the first world war really originates with the fascination with the human experience of warfare. the human experience
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of the unprecedented and unimaginable, this was our entry and the modern world entry into a century that reads terrible devastation, and things that we cannot even begin to understand. is true there was many veterans of the civil war in the united states who was alive, and they would have been in their 70s and 80s, who maybe experienced the trench warfare around richmond and petersburg, but even that in comparison to the experience of the first world war, and how world war i destroyed in many ways and sorry if i am swatting the flies away as they are part of the ambience here. it destroyed a whole civilization in many ways. at the very least, transformed
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it, and i am going to have to point two tony whenever i need to change the slide. world war i brought us into our first experiences with the modern age, and we had the marines present here as well as the army and navy and other branches of the service, and people from different countries reenacted germany, britain, and france, and all of the rest. the marines was the first to experience this new type of warfare, and in june 1918, with something that we just not have any means of experiencing. if you look at the personal accounts, and you look at the memoirs and the diaries, you can begin to understand for men and
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women, who was over there in europe, how they attempted to process this experience, this new expense.have a mythology of war i and what it was all about , it's been pervasive and we are still struggling to deal with it today. this mythology is based on the simple idea. it's the idea that in 1914 and again in 1917, millions of young men as well as women entered the service with naove and bold ideas that war would be a great adventure and testing ground and a grand
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parade. , they would be in berlin by christmas or paris by christmas as the case may be and that the war was going to be over and that the experience of mass slaughter crushed them broke them, disillusion them and cause them to reject everything they once believed, created the lost generation or the dissolution and bitter generation that no longer believed in things like god, country patriotism and the rest. that's the mythology. it's a pervasive mythology that originates in europe primarily. it originates in literature that is often is not was produced by civilians rather than active service soldiers
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and it crossed the atlantic and continues to endure to this day. when i talk to americans, present company except that, generally, americans who haven't heard much about world war i and don't know much about it and they know it happened and they know when and they know who was involved, they will say, wow that was one mass slaughter, guys getting into trenches getting blown up by the thousands and they never accomplished anything and 20 years later we had world war ii , doesn't that prove that world war i was a colossal waste , what is there to learn from that? i think it gets to the root of why even now in the centennial, there is so little interest from so many people in world
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war i. they think they know the story. they think it's a simple story, it's a miserable depressing ugly story and there's nothing to learn about it. they envision the trenches, they envision the mass letter and they think that's all there is. if, however you take the time to hear the stories of the individuals of the people, to look at the personal testimony of the men, the women, from different perspectives, you see there is no one more experience that this is a stereotype of millions going off to war and being massacred in huge numbers and being broken and disillusioned, it's really just that. a mythology. in fact, every story is an individual story.
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every man and woman came to this war from a different perspective, carrying a different set of values. if you look at, broadly speaking, this applies not just to the americans but the british, the germans, french, if you look broadly speaking at the experiences of those in the military, they are a good number on one side that say this was a terrible experience, i no longer believe in god or any of this stuff, there are probably an equal number on the other side, you generally who stories we don't listen to and say this were convinced me that my country is right and i believe in my country even more passionately than i did before,
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and i believe in religion traditional values, even more passionately than before. took away that sense and if you look at them you can't say, oh, while the guys are the gals as the case may be left the war feeling more patriotic, they didn't really experience the bad stuff. the mass of soldiers are somewhere in between. men and women veterans are somewhere in between. their conclusions, usually were, and this is true for americans, about whom i'm going to be seeking this afternoon -- speaking this afternoon. this war was a terrible experience, i saw things i can never forget and i saw things that i have trouble dealing with, that i have trouble communicating to my family and friends when i come home, but i also forged comradeship's and
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friendships that no one else can understand. i learned the meaning of unity and cooperation i learned how to have fun, i saw a whole new world and when i look at war i see the possibility of another war. it's a terrible thing and we should avoid it but if i had to do it again i word the best i would. that's broadly speaking the conclusion that most soldiers drew. think about that, how do you jive the idea of a one- dimensional mass slaughter where everyone dies, they'll get blown up and they die with this broader perspective of men and women having complex conclusions and ideas they
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bring back with them. i had the pleasure of speaking to a group of high school kids up in middleburg virginia and we approach the topic of world war i and what i did, i said, how many have family members who are veterans good two thirds of them raise their hands and i said tell me about your family experiences and about your dad and your brother, your uncle your brother, tell me about how he felt when he came back and i heard every young man or woman give me a different story you can't generalize about them. every one of the stories i've
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heard about the doughboys coming back and attempting to readjust and living with their family. there's a personal connection that you can understand if you take the time to look at it. how many of you have been to the battlefields? good numbers. if you go over, you probably had experiences i was talking to a young man looking at a nice german potato master grenade and i was remembering what it looks like when you find these things when the handle has rotted off. this one has only partially rotted off and you can still tell it's a grenade but i was there eight years ago with my son and i was leading a tour group and i told everybody don't touch anything in my son is like hey look at this tin
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cup i found and i went over and he immediately put it in my hand and it was, this isn't a picture of it but it was the top of a potato master grenade with the explosive in it. you can see, and i put it gingerly down, but not until everyone else in the tour group came up and took a picture of me holding it. you can certainly find, gas canisters, 75 ska 155 shelves, everywhere grenades, boxes of grenades buried under the ground and just coming up, spent cartridges , everything imaginable. you get a sense, or those who have been there get a sense of immediacy. the american battlefields which i have explored, are very much
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as they were at the time. you can see the trenches and the individual gun pits. you can see the pits that the soldiers dug when they were surrounded in the pocket. i kick away some leaves, i did not use metal detectors but just kick away some leaves and out roles a piece of a flare pistol, imagine finding something in north america and it's very difficult, it's very immediate and you give the sense of what it was like to be there in the last group i let i found the remains of the soldier near a demolished bunker, he was
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either german or american my guess is, probably german and in this case it was probably a field burial because it was a piece, it was a pelvis and a femur, probably the lower part of a body of someone who had been hit by a shell and he just buried that piece of the body there. you are still turning up things like that all the time, the opportunity to go over there , to france to go see it is one you should never pass up. however, i'm looking forward to hopefully going over this year to see if things have changed, however, for the most part by my experiences leading up to this year americans don't visit these world war i sites, and that is especially jarring at a
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place like the american cemetery at raman. this is, i think, almost nobody knows the largest american military cemetery in europe. it's larger than omaha beach, don't get me wrong, i'm all for everyone going to omaha beach but it's bigger it's about 14,000+ aerials there and they are all burials from american casualties in the first world war. when i have gone there, i have almost never seen americans there. i've seen people in school children going to these graves leaving flowers, wreaths and other mementos. the school children are almost without exception german, french, british, belgian.
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>> generally each american president issues a declaration on veterans day that should be read at american military cemeteries that they do every year. one year i came out to read this declaration, he wanted to find american jah
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reid the proclamation but he couldn't find a single one. to me this is shameful. we're talking about france. there's something in our memory that makes us resistant to this. yet, world war i had a huge impact on american culture. another thing i often hear from people who want to explain away why they're not interested in the war, the first thing they say is it's too brutal, to broady -- bloodied, there's nothing to say about it but the next thing they say is we were really only in it for a very short time, it didn't have any impact on us as a people, did it? and they will often do what my son's high school textbook will do, they will summarize it by
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saying, here is why congress declared war and it will 1917. here is woodrow wilson's point of view and let us tell you about unrestricted submarine warfare and the rest of it, then there's a lot of training and we send our troops over there we had more guns and tanks and planes and the germans lost, then we have verse i let's spend the next unit talking about bursae -- for saatchi -- let's get into the great depression, there's no mention of world war i. world war i's influence is pervasive through the culture of the interwar period. any of you like hard-boiled detective and olives -- novels.
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world war i is present and often these detect gives our veterans having trouble giving over -- getting over the culture of violence. >> one of my favorite movies is golddiggers of 1933. i recommend that you go to youtube and watch remember my forgotten man, it's really about, how could you have forgotten your veterans. they are talking about this in the early 1930s. the veteran served in the military for taking photographs
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and choreographing marches, military marches and displays, which he translated into his movies, more poignantly, i often, since i began writing about world war i i often come into contact with world war i veterans. grandchildren. great-grandchildren and, in one case, very powerful for me i met the son of the youngest american servicemen in world war i who saw combat, the youngest serviceman period, fella who was 13 years old, served with the fifth division and saw combat and was clearly traumatized by his experience. i met his son the young fellow who was my age and he told me
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the effect his father's experiences had on him and his family, up to the present day. these things passed down through the generations. next slide please. me go over some of the more outstanding points of american participation in world war i then come back to the main topic of why this matters to us i looked at through the lens of the experiences of four individuals. , for americans, who i will get to at the end of this talk. , general john persian, and to his right is, do any of you know who this is, general charles p summerall who commanded the first division, pershing was a believer in the concept of a specially american way of war. this had huge
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impact on the way we fought the war, which is why i bring it up. persian believed that europeans who had fought the war up to this time, 1917 and 1918, had become, and she -- he use the word, corrupted by the experiences of trench warfare, they became corrupted and morally degraded and become dependent on sitting in the trenches waiting for the heavy artillery and the poison gas, using machine guns and grenades, they forgot the screw principle of the individual soldier with his rifle and bayonet in his will to achieve dominance on the battlefield. those of you familiar with the history of the war, it's not really a new idea, you can go right back to the french who
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said the same thing, it didn't end well with them. persian believes that however that may have been in 1914, what we have now is a situation where millions of men have died in horrible battles and we need to find a way to get beyond that. we need to return to open warfare. we need to return emphasis to the individual soldier or marine with his rifle in his bayonet and get out of the trenches. it's almost as if he wishes away trench warfare and assumes we will simply, because we are americans as i have friends who teach at west point teach me, the cadets that come in seem to
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have the same idea that americans are the only people in the world who know how to hide behind trees when they are fighting, that we are going to bring in this american principal and get out of the principal and returned to open warfare. this has a tragic impact in a lot of ways. you can see how simplistic it is. you can see how there's a refusal to learn from the belligerence who have fought already but, ironically, the more i looked at it, there are points when his idea works as you continue. >> i love this particular slide i show it in many talks and i found it in the national archives, these young americans who are receiving gas mask training and i love the look of the young man on the right, the far side of the screen, he's like, are you kidding me.
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this kind of encapsulates the american attitude and training. we were entirely unprepared for the war, that is essential to understanding our precipitation in the war -- participation in the war. we were unprepared physically in the terms of technology, we were unprepared psychologically to face a war of this nature in 1917 or 1918. we had no industry, no war industry. we had no effort among armed forces to try to learn the means of fighting modern war, so when the troops went over there and received instruction, they were very reluctant to
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adopt what they learned and in fact part of the problem comes from above, if you look at the official document from the period, you see pershing and the general's writing back and forth to each other, saying i don't know about the training were getting from the french and the british, i think the soldiers are listening too closely. they will say this. they will say we need to get them away from the british and the french because they are telling them things we don't want them to know when they will become corrupt did by the same ideas. so we answer into warfare combat on the western front and our first experience in the autumn of 1917, we begin to enter on a large scale in the late spring and early summer of
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1918 as we commemorate the whole number of different battles and engagements right now and i will go through them in succession. to the end of july and early august, you have something called the advanced to the river where more american divisions were getting involved. our involvement builds to a crescendo in the autumn of 1918. persian wanted to create a single american army that would be under american command, fighting in an american way in our own sector of the front. in practice, pershing and other americans, this is the first talk i've given to this soundtrack with horses in the background, i love it. [ laughter ] purging had to
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compromise. in the spring of 1918, he had to break up american divisions and units into smaller formations and embed them under french and buddhist commands. it's important to keep that in mind. in practice, we are fighting under french and british command for much of the war, it's really only in the fall that we begin to fully command our own operations. the marines as i was mentioning are the first and yes i know, the army was involved in bill wood as well, the american army prograde in the third division, deeply involved in bill wood but the wood was primarily a marine operation. june 1918, the marines can say, rightfully
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so, that they are the first branch of the united states service to experience modern warfare outside north america. and bella would, they acquire this reputation as being devil dogs because of the way they fight. but it's a complicated story. belleau wood was a battle that was a slugfest. it's remarkable for the fact that the marines who fought in belleau wood did so outside of command control. belleau wood was a specific environment, it was a woodland environment, saturated with
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poison gas, high explosives, you could not see your comrades. you could not communicate with your officers, often with companies or with battalion regiment division, as the case may be. you have to make your own decisions. the marines take terrible casualties in belleau wood. but, they demonstrate a number of things and one of them is fanatical aggressiveness, this really shocks the germans. sure, a lot of stuff is publicity. but if you look at the german records, you see the germans are shocked, and i've read a number of contemporary german accounts that were not published and not intended for publication. they read and they say these guys kept coming no matter what
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we would do. we would throw grenades, it would kill several, they just keep coming. they would form into gangs they say here's another gang of marines and they would walk with rifles held at the hip, but they'd walk into battle smoking cigarettes and making independent decisions and learning very quickly that this was a characteristic of both army and marines throughout the first world wars. the americans learned more quickly and how to adapt to the circumstances and learned how to use dirty tricks. one of the most interesting things about belleau wood is that when the marines enter into belleau wood, the germans use all kinds of dirty tricks, veteran german troops they've
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been in belleau wood for a while in this environment for a while, so they do things like they will blow american bugle signals , they blow the petite -- the retreat, in the woods when you can't see shadows -- anything but shadows, screams, voices, retreat, move left or move right . they would employ false surrenders where they hold up the white flag and the germans throw themselves down and machine guns opened fire and germans did on multiple occasions as documented, put on american uniforms and infiltrate
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american lives. but, if you look at german records and i'm not just getting these from published accounts i'm getting them from german records and field reports that within a couple weeks the marines have done the same thing , including putting on german uniforms and getting behind german lines. it's an indication of that process of adaptation in the process of learning. >> we developed an idea that the french were all cowards and that they were all running away
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. we entered into the conflict in saved paris and unfortunately, you still see this many times. in order to emphasize the importance of our process a patient to say that we save -- of our participation to say we saved paris. the french fought well and we fought side-by-side, primarily with the french and we learned
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very important lessons from them on how to fight. our participation in the war continues to build as i indicated, through the end of belleau wood at the end of june, the army regrade captures -- at the end of june and july 1918. july 15, the last of the major german offensive actions that began in the spring, takes place along the river. the u.s. third division, beats back in its sector, the german attack with pretty heavy fighting and the u.s. 28 division which is my favorite, experiences its first combat there along the martin river, in company size formations , 28 division troops embedded in
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french formations, it's a terrible experience. the french pull out, not because they are broken but because they decide we are pulling out. through july and august we push back the german salience that have been pushed into france and we push them back, multiple american divisions but in the bottom of 1918, we launched two major offenses. the american first army has been
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formed in august 1918, we launched an offensive on september 12 that's quite successful in wiping out a german held salient near verdun, and then we launch the meuse-argonne offensive in 2019 this was and remains the largest and bloodiest battle in the history of our nation. if you go to museums and libraries, you find almost no reference to the meuse-argonne. look at the recent documentary that came out on pbs with many qualities but there is little reference to the meuse-argonne. i've been in major american museums that will follow american participation in the war and don't even mention the
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measure gone -- in the meuse- argonne. from september to mid october 1918, 26 americans are killed in three weeks which is more than half of the combat dead in korea and about half of the combat dead in vietnam in three weeks, this is an important battle. this is a defining battle in the history of our nation, and it's people like this man who formed the backbone and there were four men who participated and i looked at the four
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different ways americans experienced this war in four different outcomes. a lawyer from upstate new york and massachusetts, he became a practicing lawyer in new york city, very successful i went to williams college that as you can see, you can look at his eyes and see he's an intelligent man. he is a man with a profound sense of sick of it -- of civic duty. this is something we have trouble understanding today.
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millions of civilians became officers to serve our forces in world war i, these are often men from better families, from privileged backgrounds, men who serve in professional trades, they have this deep personal sense of responsibility toward their country and then, as they entered the service, toward their men. realty became a major -- charles became a major and the 77 division was from greater new york city. many men came from the lower east side of manhattan from hells kitchen or brooklyn, these were guys who had lived on the mean streets. many were actually gangsters or they were many, many of them, or immigrants, many of them,
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not naturalized immigrants. others who had been the first or second generation immigrants who had come through ellis island. when the 77th division entered into the lines, the german report suggested that an italian division had entered into the front, and they were convinced it had to be italian because they could hear the guys talking to each other. you take a guy like him and put him in charge of the troops with a mixture of men from the western plains date, ranchers and all the rest, and atypical army of solution, if you need to build that your unit with guys from new york city, let's get a bunch of guys from nevada and montana, who are farmers and put them in there with them. george mcmurtry is charles whittlesey's comrade captain,
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millionaire stock broker, irish- american family, his family owned minds -- mines and his family are stock brokers. 's order to launch multiple attacks and i won't get into the technical details but, it's ordered to launch multiple attacks into the forest which are largely frontal assaults. much like belleau wood said deep thick forests and hard to see where you're going with craggy train easily defended in the german defenders are determined. in early october, he launches the battalion plus troops from another battalion, really parts of three battalions
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into the forest, cut off and surrounded.. >> they show absolute dedication to the welfare of the men who are surrounded without food medical supplies of any kind, they didn't have medics with them period, they had to reuse bandages fired on from all directions and hit from a friendly fire artillery barrage, imagine how demoralizing that is. whittlesey and mcmurtry all through the experience, crawl from hole to hole, these are civilians, not professional soldiers, they talk to every individual man, try to strengthen them and give them courage and tried to give them hope day after day after day
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and you can see this is a picture of mcmurtry returning back on the ship in 1919. if you want to know what they experienced you just look at his face. they are profoundly experienced by their experience in this pocket. after several days, after the launched attack that ends up liberating the lost battalion. but, though they are liberated, they still carry the legacy within. >>
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his personality has changed and he can adjust and he's become angry, he's become difficult to live with, but, he finds his piece in dedicating himself to
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the survivors and he takes over the lost battalion survivors association in new york city up to his death in the 1950s, he absolutely dedicates himself to that. charles whittlesey is a hero. this man saved the lives of hundreds of his soldiers and showed absolute dedication but he can't forgive himself, he can't forgive himself for every single one of his men who died and he is tormented by nightmares after the war and tries to devote himself, personally to survivors and men who are dealing with ptsd. but, in 1921, after the ceremony for the entombment of the unknown soldier at arlington national cemetery, he can't take it anymore and him at a tree sit on the same podium and
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whittlesey turns to mcmurtry and says, george, i shouldn't have come. tonight when i go to bed i will hear the cries of my men in the pocket. and, a few days later he ends his life, he just steps off a steamer going to cuba and drowns himself. these are two outcomes. alvin york is another outcome. alvin york was involved in the action that liberated the lost battalion at the 82nd all- american division. he and other soldiers with him capture 132 germans in the action that liberates the lost battalion and he receives a medal of honor and returns home and is treated by his native state of tennessee, you can look in his eyes and see his experience as a celebrity and a
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hero. he knows it, he understands it, he's a simple farmer and if you've seen the movie you know his story of trying to come to terms with fighting in this war and his personal and spiritual experiences. but, what york tries to do is very specific he understands what is going to happen, he does not like it. he wants to go up to east tennessee, back to the farm and return to his family. he decides to transfer the celebrity into serving the less fortunate. he founds the alvin york institute in east tennessee, with all the money he gets from his celebrity that he puts it into the institute, to help the less fortunate, to learn farming and loan business, including veterans as well as young people, to establish themselves in every day like --
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life, and he finds his piece there. finally, the fourth story is damon runyon, damon runyon is a great american journalist, a sportswriter, if you've ever read guys and dolls or seen the wonderful musical, you know something about damon runyon, a veteran of the spanish-american war, he tells the story, he's there when the lost battalion emerges from the argonne forest and he interviews whittlesey and he interviews mcmurtry and he integrates their story into the american story. he's the guy who takes the story of all the immigrants, the misfit, mismatched soldiers and says, look, these are part of the american tapestry. these are part of the american experience, he too is dedicated to their individual stories and he carries their stories with
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him as he writes about broadway in the great white way in new york city and talks with veterans and takes their language and adds it to the american slang culture. when he dies of throat cancer in 1946, his final wish is that his ashes be carried by eddie rickenbacker and scattered over new york city, over times square. in that act emerges his love for new york city, his testimony , his experience of the war, into the american story. it's very powerful, even someone like him who was not a soldier, carries that with him and wishes in some way to return it to the people. so, those were the doughboys, those were part of our experience and, i feel that we
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have a duty and a responsibility to try to return to them and i don't want to neglect the women who served in one respective or another as nurses, ambulance drivers and entertainers and sometimes very much at the front actively. they are all part of our story and must be integrated into our memory. we must especially go to pay our respects, this year to those who made the ultimate sacrifice. thank you very much. [ applause ] >> i went a little overtime but we do still have time for questions.
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>> two questions if i may, first, it's kind of a sad commentary on our government, wasn't there an issue that when he was alive he was being persecuted by the irs for failure to pay income tax i find that unconscionable . your cat, and that's a good point, he york had a good number of financial problems, being chased by the irs, for income taxes and also for debt, largely because he poured in everything he had with the york institute and what's even more i think, disheartening than the story is that, because he struggled with his finances during the period during the war, he was somehow no longer palatable to the public. we look at gary cooper and
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sergeant york who came out in 1941, in the 20s and 30s york was for many people, considered a hero but he can even manage his finances, when the ceremony of the unknown soldier took place, initially, most people assume because pershing had to represent as one military hero, most people thought he would choose york but he didn't because york was no longer acceptable because of his financial problems. he chose a guy who was also a respectable guide to represent the army, all the newspapers could talk about was, oh look, he didn't choose york or whittlesey either. that means these guys are not such great heroes as they are
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made out to be. they were kind of tossed to the side and it was very sad. >> if caught early in the war, before america got into the war, if he done what he was supposed to do and moved to the left, do you think france would have fallen or allowed the gap to open between the two armies? >> you are referring to the first battle in 1914? >> it was a result of him doing what he should've done in september. >> what he did before that in the pef advances into the gap that he left. i think it's more likely than not that france would have fallen. it was a close run thing, the germans and ashley finn plan
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worked up to that point, yes . >> >> a very nice presentation and we thank you for it. there's an author by the name of bill walker . bill is a friend of mine . bill is a friend of mine to any wrote an extensive book, the taking of mantra con and the conflict between the 79th division and bullard, who had the fourth division, there was a big controversy and i wondered what your thoughts were . very briefly, it's a book called the trail of little gibraltar that i recommend in a reference to the battle and it was largely isolated, a general
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named robert bullard, refused to make the movement that would've been necessary to cut this off which would've meant crossing divisional lines saving the 79th division from attack. he refused to do that and many men died because of it and the timetable was set way back, bullard, unfortunately, is, i hope there are no bullard family members here, not one of my favorite generals in the war, there was a tendency among some american military leaders, towards glory seeking. bullard was a typical example of that, not all generals. my favorite american leader of the war was general hunter ligands who was an innovative general who saved lives, he was the guy who develop the movement
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for the lost battalion. bullard was an example of the worst, that was not the only example, he was responsible for the annihilation portion of the 20 division, he left them stranded on a bridge set on the other side of the river in the germans white it out, which brings me a long way a memoir i highly recommend, since were in pennsylvania, in gettysburg, for those who want to take to look at the personal experience of the war, read a book called toward the flame by a gentleman named herbie allen spelled h-e-
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r-v-e-y it's the finest american memoir of the war, it's an easy read, beautifully written, not too long and very personal, i strongly recommend that book. >> okay. thank you very much. [ applause ] >> american history tvs weeklong focus on world war i, 100 years after the wars and continues on friday with a look at the soldiers experience. richard faulkner of the u.s. army command and general staff college, talks about trench warfare and, a pentagon historian discusses psychiatry of shell shock and what they've learned about the psychological trauma of combat. it starts at 8 pm eastern on cspan-3
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>> this sunday, veterans day, american history tvs marks the 100th anniversary of the end of world war i starting at 7:30 am eastern alive with your calls on washington journal. during the discussion, author of the myth of the great war and michael casing, author of war against war, the american fight for peace, 1914 to 1918, and at 11 am, live from arlington national cemetery. watch live coverage on c-span three american history tvu can find programming on world war i

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