Comrades in Arms: The Influence of George S. Patton on Walton H. Walker's Pusan Perimeter Defense
Strategy research project
ARMY WAR COLL CARLISLE BARRACKS PA
Pagination or Media Count:
Successful senior leadership in the Army is strengthened based on the quality of professional relationships and role models provided between senior and junior officers. Senior leaders were developed by their experiences, and they must set the example for those who follow. This paper explores one example of the effects of modeled leadership on the professional development of an important U.S. strategic leader General Walton H. Walker as demonstrated during his defense of the Pusan Perimeter in August-September 1950 in Korea. General Walker served as the XX Corps Commander under General George S. Pattons Third Army for the duration of World War II. There were demonstrable effects of George S. Pattons influence on Walton Walker coming from this period of senior leader relationship in combat. This paper develops Pattons effects on Walkers leadership style, on his relationships with his staff, and in the formulation of the defensive operational concept, including Walkers orchestration of counterattacking reserves during the Pusan Perimeter. Walkers generalship was developed over a lifetime and refined under a period of Pattons senior leadership. It was not merely the common experience in World War II between Patton and Walker that shaped him, but Pattons role model that influenced the common tenets of leadership and warfighting demonstrated by Walker at the Pusan Perimeter. The paper concludes with prospects for today based on historical lessons of Walkers interwar generation of officers.
- Personnel Management and Labor Relations
- Defense Systems