MEMOIRS OF MY SERVICES IN THE WORLD WAR: 1917-1918 by George C. Marshall

MEMOIRS OF MY SERVICES IN THE WORLD WAR: 1917-1918

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KIRKUS REVIEW

At first sight, Marshall's disinclination to publish this brief account of his WW I experiences seems justified. Written in pedestrian, reticent fashion in the early 1920s, the book has a certain charm, however. As a staff officer during the chaos of American entry into the war, Marshall had an ideal opportunity to display the diplomatic gifts and enterprise lacked by more traditional military men. He reassured all levels of the French army about US methods and intentions, broke open supply bottlenecks, and bolstered the morale of ill-trained recruits facing mustard gas and trench horrors. Marshall obviously seduced everyone from PÉtain's generals to British aristocrats, yet his style, relying on the all-purpose Americanism ""interesting,"" is anything but debonair. The book holds back on judgments of top figures--Pershing simply ""rose to greatness""--but forthrightly states that the armistice was timed to avoid a revolution in Germany. A piquant little memorabilium by a man who wrote nothing else in popular form.

Pub Date: Aug. 25th, 1976
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin