An American hero has passed away:
Truth is, retired Gen. H. Norman Schwarzkopf didn’t care much for his popular “Stormin’ Norman” nickname.
The seemingly no-nonsense Desert Storm commander’s reputed temper with aides and subordinates supposedly earned him that rough-and-ready moniker. But others around the general, who died Thursday in Tampa, Fla., at age 78 from complications from pneumonia, knew him as a friendly, talkative and even jovial figure who preferred the somewhat milder sobriquet given by his troops: “The Bear.”
That one perhaps suited him better later in his life, when he supported various national causes and children’s charities while eschewing the spotlight and resisting efforts to draft him to run for political office.
He lived out a quiet retirement in Tampa, where he’d served his last military assignment and where an elementary school bearing his name is testament to his standing in the community…
Not many commanders get a chance like Schwarzkopf had – to do a massive turning movement against an enemy and utterly destroy him in the field. That it took him only 100 hours of offensive operations to finish the Iraqi army puts him in the realm of past commanders such as MacArthur and Lee. Make no mistake about it, it takes massive amounts of moral courage to do what Schwarzkopf did – all too many commanders go in to battle merely determined not to lose, but some rise above fear and take the risks necessary to win smashing victories – and victories which end up costing less lives than longer, drawn out, cautious campaigns lesser commanders think up. We can only hope and pray that we have even one or two officers in the United States military of the caliber of General Schwarzkopf. God rest his soul and comfort his family and friends.