The European Campaign: Its Origins and Conduct

  • June 01, 2011
  • Dr Clayton K S Chun, Dr Samuel J Newland

The authors begin with an examination of prewar planning for various contingencies, then move to the origins of “Germany first” in American war planning. They then focus on the concept, favored by both George C. Marshall and Dwight D. Eisenhower, that the United States and its Allies had to conduct a cross-channel attack and undertake an offensive aimed at the heartland of Germany. Following this background contained in the initial chapters, the remainder of the book provides a comprehensive discussion outlining how the European Campaign was was carried out. The authors conclude that American political leaders and war planners established logical and achievable objectives for the nation’s military forces. However during the campaign’s execution, American military leaders were slow to put into practice what would later be called operational level warfare. For comparison, the authors include an appendix covering German efforts at war planning in the tumultuous 1920s and 1930s.