Accession Number : ADA601697


Title :   The Vital Presence: The Generalship of Field Marshal Viscount William Slim General Officer Commanding XIV Army in the Burma Theater 1943-1945


Descriptive Note : Master's thesis


Corporate Author : MARINE CORPS COMMAND AND STAFF COLL QUANTICO VA


Personal Author(s) : Conners, Daniel D


Full Text : https://apps.dtic.mil/dtic/tr/fulltext/u2/a601697.pdf


Report Date : 25 Mar 2013


Pagination or Media Count : 53


Abstract : Seventy years separate the battlefields of the Second World War from the challenges of the contemporary strategic environment, yet its study remains central to our understanding of generalship and the practice of operational art. Arguably, the leading Joint Force Land Component Commander and practitioner of operational art during the Second World War was Field Marshal Viscount William Slim, principally for his performance as General Officer Commanding (GOC) XIV Army during the war in Burma from October 1943 to May 1945. To examine the essence of generalship at the operational level, this paper examines Slim's 'vital presence' as Army Commander. From late 1943, Slim rebuilt and revitalized a shattered Eastern Army; harnessed a fractious coalition to common operational objectives; integrated large special operations into a coherent theater operational vision; and conceived a bold, ambitious campaign design to seize the initiative, degrade, and then destroy the potent Japanese Army Group. Slim's mastery of Army Command through all phases of war demonstrates a gift for binding the conceptual art of systemic campaign design, a deep expertise in the practicalities of warfighting, a singular genius for personal leadership, and ruthless determination on the battlefield. Slim's performance as Army Commander is of enduring relevance both as an archetype of modern generalship, and as a prototype for the contemporary construct of the Joint Force Land Component Commander.


Descriptors :   *GENERAL OFFICERS , *MILITARY HISTORY , LEADERSHIP , MILITARY COMMANDERS , MILITARY OPERATIONS , MILITARY PLANNING , MILITARY STRATEGY , SECOND WORLD WAR , THEATER LEVEL OPERATIONS


Subject Categories : Humanities and History
      Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics


Distribution Statement : APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE