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Creighton Abrams
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Military Personnel
    (September 15, 1914-September 4, 1974)
    Born in Springfield, Massachusetts
    US Army general
    Commanded military operations in the Vietnam War (1968-72)
    US Army Chief of Staff (1972-74)
    Namesake for the M1 Abrams tank
    Nicknamed 'Abe'
    He was described by a reporter as looking like 'an unmade bed smoking a cigar.'
    Another reporter noted about his speech, 'He let the goddamns fall where they may.'
    He was described as 'openly hostile' to the Army's investigation into the My Lai massacre.
    He praised Operation Speedy Express -- which killed at least 5,000 civilians in South Vietnam's Mekong Delta -- as a tremendous success.
    As a tank commander in World War II, he repeatedly defeated larger German forces with superior guns.
    General George S. Patton said, 'I'm supposed to be the best tank commander in the Army, but I have one peer — Abe Abrams. He's the world champion.'
    He won the Distinguished Service Cross twice in World War II.
    Many observers thought the Vietnam War would have gone much better if his 'clear and hold' policy had been followed from the start, rather than General William Westmoreland's 'search and destroy' tactics.
    British counter-insurgency expert Sir Robert Thompson called him the best American general since Ulysses S. Grant.
    As Chief of Staff, he oversaw the transition from conscription to an all-volunteer Army.

Credit: C. Fishel

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