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To the Commanding General, First Army1
June 26, 1941 Radio. [Washington, D.C.]
Most confidentially we have rumblings here of a build-up in the press unfavorable to the maneuvers along the lines of criticism of lack of equipment, lack of air ground activity, lack of modernized procedure of motorized and mechanized forces. Views of enlisted men obtained from circulating press correspondents indicate that they know little of what is going on and therefore derive little instruction from the maneuvers and feel that they are losing needed basic training. The matter of equipment involves misunderstanding of why certain divisions have more than others due to logical priorities. The matter of air-ground cooperation involves misunderstanding regarding the time required to procure proper type radio installations for ground forces to communicate with air and the necessarily slow development of sufficient air units in continental United States due to advanced priorities for overseas garrisons as well as delays in production schedule. Nine groups are being brought into shape for participation in September October and November. The immediate reaction has evidently been inspired by the failures of officers and noncommissioned officers to keep their men advised of the constantly changing local maneuver situation as applied to them. Steps should be taken to correct this as quickly as possible. There is also failure on the part of civilians to appreciate the absolute necessity of testing out the quality of the men that is their state of discipline and stamina when under physical and other pressures of arduous field service.
Document Copy Text Source: George C. Marshall Papers, Pentagon Office Collection, Selected Materials, George C. Marshall Research Library, Lexington, Virginia.
Document Format: Typed radio message.
1. This same message was sent to the commanding generals of the Second, Third, and Fourth armies.
Recommended Citation: ThePapers of George Catlett Marshall, ed.Larry I. Bland, Sharon Ritenour Stevens, and Clarence E. Wunderlin, Jr.(Lexington, Va.: The George C. Marshall Foundation, 1981- ). Electronic version based on The Papers of George Catlett Marshall, vol. 2, “We Cannot Delay,” July 1, 1939-December 6, 1941 (Baltimore and London: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1986), pp. 548-549.