General William Hood Simpson: Unsung Commander of US Ninth Army
ARMY WAR COLL CARLISLE BARRACKS PA
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In late March 1945, Lieutenant General William H. Simpson focused the efforts of his US Ninth Army, now numbering more than 300,000 troops, on the impending crossing of the Rhine. Ninth Army headquarters, smoothly managing the buildup for the crossing, was no longer the green organization that had become operational in France the previous August. As General Omar Bradley observed after the war, Ninth Army had been ambitious and impressively eager to learn, and it had achieved success after success in battle on the Continent. Simpson and his now combat-seasoned senior staff officers had brought Ninth Army to maturity. Simpsons skills as an army commander, though not highly publicized during the war, were recognized by many senior officers, including General of the Army Dwight D. Eisenhower. In Crusade in Europe, Eisenhower wrote that he was aware of no mistake the Ninth Army Commander had made. He was, in General Eisenhowers fitting words, the type of leader American soldiers deserve.
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