Read Audiobooks Elviss Army Author Brian McAllister Linn –

Fascinating examination of the US Army between conflicts, in this case the period between Korea and Vietnam Linn uses the induction and service of Elvis Presley as a hook to examine the Army s struggle with relevance in the nuclear age, an attempt at transformation and impediments that kept it from becoming the Army it wanted to be Along the way, Linn chronicles the Army s attempt at reform of some of it s institutions West Point, for example by some, was considered a haven for draft dodgers during World War II , it s fighting organizations and experiment with new tactics and techniques most famously the air assault concept The centerpiece of this was the highly controversial Pentomic Concept , a title only a Sosh P could have come up with He highlights the Army s continued and frustrated attempts to move to an all volunteer force, to increase professionalization and make the most efficient use of it s manpower in the face of budgetary and mission challenges Linn believes you can learn a great deal about Armies in the periods in between conflict and with some of the similar debates we hear today he goes a long way towards demonstrating that here. Brian McAllister Linn describes the evolution of the U.S Army between the Second World War and the beginning of the Vietnam War He stresses how the Army embarked on public relations campaigns, dealt with budgetary and personnel cuts during Eisenhower s New Look, and implemented ROAD Divisions under Kennedy s Flexible Response The theme that runs throughout the book is that the Army required proficient, skilled technicians in order to maintain and operate increasingly complex technology but could not retain inductees or volunteers past two three year enlistment terms because of private sector competition for both the rising managerial, white collar worker and the skilled craftsman The Army faced perennial personnel shortfalls, fell behind in maintenance of vehicles, batteries, and materiel, and stifled the free thought and leadership flexibility of its junior officers and junior field grade officers This book covers wide ranging topics but generally remains focused on how the Army sought to define itself relative to the Air Force and Navy during the post atomic era and how senior commanders pushed internal campaigns for revolutionize Army doctrine, strategy, and tactics Linn provides a fairly grim view of the Army during this period Most new technologies e.g Davy Crockett crew fired atomic weapons, Corporal missiles, and the artillery fired tactical atomic bomb were failures Command culture became a toxic environment of micromanagement and snoopervision that forced many bright young officers out of the service The USMA was racked with poor leadership, cheating scandals, and inadequate faculty The Pentomic Division envisioned by Maxwell Taylor prepared the Army for the atomic battlefield where tactical nuclear weapons were the norm however, this vision of using tactical nuclear weapons to stop a Soviet onslaught in Western Europe was impractical The public perception of the Army worsened during the period with ex Army personnel spreading negative tales about their own experiences While the Army theoretically desired dynamic, creative thinkers to manage its arsenal and plan for future nuclear wars, the actual climate inspired soldiers, as Elvis Presley put it, to keep their heads down and punch their ticket On the other hand, during the 1960s ROAD Divisions were a success under Kennedy and Flexible Response during the Berlin Crisis at Checkpoint Charlie demonstrated that the Army still had crack divisions Linn s book is pregnant with insights and potential research topics for the period covered For example, he suggests that the U.S Army, in its efforts to improve the entertainment and social life of enlisted personnel, created a web of connections between music and teenage culture during the 1950s In other words, the blossoming of Rock and Roll, RB, Country and other genres had much to do with the U.S Army s efforts to spread music through radio programs, public entertainment, etc In another undeveloped argument, Linn suggests that junior enlisted culture especially among inductees fundamental shifted during the 1950s men were less patriotic, cynical, and unwilling to follow orders without some type of logical explanation Less clear is how, in turn, the Army responded to these changes in enlisted culture aside from ramping up entertainment and welfare programs on base Linn also stresses that the Army inducted the most diverse Army in U.S History during the 1950s by capturing a cross section of Americans by class, race, and ethnicity He even contends that overwhelming diversity and the Army s efforts to integrate units helped foster biracial solidarity within units e.g Sharing music across ethnic, racial, and class lines This is an important claim, but not fully unpacked in the context of Linn s study I would highly recommend this book to scholars who study the post World War II Army, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, or civil military relations There are also useful arguments and insights in this book that social and political historians of the 1950s 1960s would find useful Unfortunately, Linn assumes the reader possesses a lot of prior knowledge about this period and thus writes the book in a manner that makes it rather inaccessible to non specialists. As Eisenhower and his advisers promulgated the New Look Policy, predicated on high tech weapons and nuclear deterrence, the army struggled to articulate a vision that would give cohesion to an officer corps riddled with RHIP resentments, enlisted solders who were either overqualified and underused, or ones needing comic books with eighth grade vocabularies for instruction in working with nuclear procedures All of them existed in a system with faltering personnel cycles, trying to compete with a 1950s labor market in which companies were tolerating unions, offering pensions and cultivating brand loyalty of a kind the military had never had to pitch to a broad population Linn s use of Elvis as an exemplar, and juicy details Miss Army 1962 was.Jane Fonda highlights the problems of the US army generation between WWII and Vietnam, popularized by MASH, Beetle Bailey and Sgt Bilko, but also creating a critical mass of men who had tolerated integration, seen of the world and matured as citizens while wearing baggy greens and peeling potatoes. A fantastic journey through the professionalization of the US Army From the development of multifunctional formations, centralized schooling and selection of NCOs, the the switch from pinks greens to Army Greens the story of change is here Like much of history, what is new is old. When The US Army Drafted Elvis Presley In , It Quickly Set About Transforming The King Of Rock And Roll From A Rebellious Teen Idol Into A Clean Cut GI Trading In His Gold Trimmed Jacket For Standard Issue Fatigues, Elvis Became A Model Soldier In An Army Facing The Unprecedented Challenge Of Building A Fighting Force For The Atomic AgeIn An Era That Threatened Soviet American Thermonuclear Annihilation, The Army Declared It Could Limit Atomic Warfare To The Battlefield It Not Only Adopted A Radically New Way Of Fighting But Also Revamped Its Equipment, Organization, Concepts, And Training Practices From Massive Garrisons In Germany And Korea To Nuclear Tests To Portable Atomic Weapons, The Army Reinvented Itself Its Revolution In Warfare Required An Equal Revolution In Personnel The New Army Needed Young Officers And Soldiers Who Were Highly Motivated, Well Trained, And Technologically Adept Drafting Elvis Demonstrated That Even This Icon Of Youth Culture Was Not Too Cool To Wear The Army S UniformThe Army Of The S Was America S Most Racially And Economically Egalitarian Institution, Providing Millions With Education, Technical Skills, Athletics, And Other Opportunities With The Cooperation Of Both The Army And The Media, Military Service Became A Common Theme In Television, Music, And Movies, And Part Of This Generation S Identity Brian Linn Traces The Origins, Evolution, And Ultimate Failure Of The Army S Attempt To Transform Itself For Atomic Warfare, Revealing Not Only The Army S Vital Role In Creating Cold War America But Also The Experiences Of Its Forgotten Soldiers