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Your military leadership style and political leadership style


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On the military one, it could not have turned out better for me. My choice for greatest American.

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George Washington!

leadership_george_washington.jpg Portrait: George Washington

National Archives

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Biography:

George Washington was not only the first president but also an accomplished general. Against daunting odds, Washington launched a guerrilla war that lasted for six years and ultimately drove the British from the colonies. At many points during the conflict, the army was close to disintegrating. But through Washington's force of leadership, the colonists succeeded and he established a model for future American military leaders to follow.

Leadership Attributes:

General Washington was known for his cautious, measured, and highly successful generalship. Understanding that conventional war against the British was useless, he waged a well-planned guerilla campaign. He was also skilled in diplomacy, both as a politician and in his military career. He elicited French help in forcing the surrender of Cornwallis at Yorktown. Also, he deftly negotiated the relations between military and civilian authority. Personally, the first President was reserved. But he won the love and respects of his troops — and nation.

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William C. Westmoreland!

Portrait: George Washington

National Archives

Biography:

Born on March 26, 1914 into a wealthy family of textile manufacturers, William Westmoreland led a life of leadership. He graduated from West Point with many awards, including the Pershing Award for leadership. He commanded artillery units in North Africa and Sicily in World War II. During the Korean War, Westmoreland commanded an airborne brigade, and later he commanded the 101st Airborne Division. He later became the youngest major general and the second youngest superintendent (after MacArthur) of West Point. Westmoreland is best known for commanding the war effort in Vietnam.

Leadership Attributes:

General Westmoreland was generally a careful strategist. In Vietnam, he followed a conservative strategy, advocating a war of attrition against the Viet Cong. Westmoreland normally allowed no operations by units smaller than the battalion, and he insisted on strong artillery support. Westmoreland was more a warrior than diplomat. He found it difficult to tread the fine line of public ambivalence to the Vietnam War. Personally, Westmoreland was brave in battle. During World War II, he often scouted ahead of the guns; while doing so in Sicily, his jeep was hit but he escaped injury.

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Dwight D. Eisenhower!

Biography:

Dwight Eisenhower was both a great military leader and politician. An innovative tank commander before World War II, Eisenhower was appointed to lead the invasion of North Africa as Commander of the European Theater of Operations. He was later chosen to command Operation Overlord, the invasion of Northern Europe, and later became supreme commander of the Allied forces in western Europe. After his military career, he ran for and won the Presidency.

Leadership Attributes:

An avid planner, Eisenhower worked in the army's war plans division and was known for his strong strategic and organizational skills. Eisenhower was given the position of Supreme Allied Commander partially because of his consummate diplomatic skills. He used his skills throughout the war to balance the various Allied personalities. Field Marshall Montgomery said that Eisenhower was the only one with the personality to get all of the Allies to cooperate and win the war. Personally, he was likable and outgoing. Indeed, the motto of his presidential campaign reflected this: "I like Ike."

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