Tag: Combat

Quotes July 03, 2020

The important thing in life is not victory but combat; it is not to have vanquished but to have fought well.
Pierre de Coubertin
 
 
 
 

Only the dead have seen the end of war.
Plato
 
 
 
 

True heroism consists in being superior to the ills of life, in whatever shape they may challenge us to combat.
Napoleon Bonaparte
 
 
 
 

Heroism is endurance for one moment more.
George F. Kennan

 
 
 
 

Don’t forget, incoming fire has the right of way.
Clint Smith
 
 
 
 

In combat, spontaneity rules; rote performance of technique perishes.
Bruce Lee
 
 
 
 

The object of war is not to die for your country but to make the other bastard die for his.
George S. Patton
 
 
 
 

I wrote a novel about the combat experiences I didn’t have in Vietnam.
Tracy Kidder
 
 
 
 

The direct use of force is such a poor solution to any problem, it is generally employed only by small children and large nations.
David Friedman
 
 
 
 

We combat obstacles in order to get repose, and when got, the repose is insupportable.
Henry Adams
 
 
 
 

The U.S. Military is us. There is no truer representation of a country than the people that it sends into the field to fight for it. The people who wear our uniform and carry our rifles into combat are our kids, and our job is to support them, because they’re protecting us.
Tom Clancy
 
 
 
 

I would not trade you a billion dollars for the kids I led to combat in Vietnam or in fact any of the Marines that I served with for a quarter of a century.
Oliver North
 
 
 
 

I think I’d be a better president because I was in combat.
George H. W. Bush
 
 
 
 

Every country that has experimented with women in actual combat has abandoned the idea, and the notion that Israel uses women in combat is a feminist myth.
Phyllis Schlafly
 
 
 
 

I think women are too valuable to be in combat.
Caspar Weinberger
 
 
 
 

Virtue is a state of war, and to live in it we have always to combat with ourselves.
Jean-Jacques Rousseau
 
 
 
 

Casualties many; Percentage of dead not known; Combat efficiency; we are winning.
David M. Shoup
 
 
 
 

If you combat an international phenomenon, it is indispensable to share information internationally.
Gijs de Vries
 
 
 
 

Only the dead have seen the end of the war.
George Santayana
 
 
 
 

I do not believe in using women in combat, because females are too fierce.
Margaret Mead
 
 
 
 

I hate war as only a soldier who has lived it can, only as one who has seen its brutality, its futility, its stupidity.
Dwight D. Eisenhower
 
 
 
 

The E.U. has moved to combat global terrorism by instituting common European arrest and evidence warrants and creating a joint situation center to pool and analyze intelligence.
John Bruton
 
 
 
 

People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.
Richard Grenier

Quotes April 03, 2020

“The Japanese fought to win – it was a savage, brutal, inhumane, exhausting and dirty business. Our commanders knew that if we were to win and survive, we must be trained realistically for it whether we liked it or not. In the post-war years, the U.S. Marine Corps came in for a great deal of undeserved criticism in my opinion, from well-meaning persons who did not comprehend the magnitude of stress and horror that combat can be. The technology that developed the rifle barrel, the machine gun and high explosive shells has turned war into prolonged, subhuman slaughter. Men must be trained realistically if they are to survive it without breaking, mentally and physically.”
E.B. Sledge, With the Old Breed: At Peleliu and Okinawa
 
 
 
 
“What you don’t know going in is that when you come out, you will be scarred for life. Whether you were in for a week, a month, or a year—even if you come home without a scratch—you are never, ever going to be the same.

When I went in, I was eighteen. I thought it was all glory and you win lots of medals. You think you’re going to be the guy. Then you find out the cost is very great. Especially when you don’t see the kids you were with when you went in. Living with it can be hell. It’s like the devil presides in you. I knew what I sighed up for, yes, and I would do it again. But the reality of war—words can’t begin to describe it.”
William Guarnere
 
 
 
 
“In each succeeding war there is a tendency to proclaim as something new the principles under which it is conducted. Not only those who have never studied or experienced the realities of war, but also professional soldiers frequently fall into the error. But the principles of warfare as I learned them at West Point remain unchanged.”
John J. Pershing, My Experiences in the World War
 
 
 
 
“The only detail I knew about my dad’s experience in World War II was that he liked when they served chicken-fried steak.

I was probably 13 when he told that story, and with the unblinking sanctimony that only a teenager can wield, I remember saying, “Wasn’t that really unhealthy?” In a look that I can only describe as for-a-smart-kid-you’re-remarkably-stupid, my father replied, “We were in planes carrying bombs, and enemy planes were shooting at us. Fried food was not a problem.”
Gina Barreca
 
 
 
 
“Wars may be started by the failings of humanity
But they are won
By the craft
Of the keen and intelligent minds that fight them”
Brendan Bigney, War What Comes After

Quotes January 10, 2020

“The time is now at hand which must probably determine whether Americans are to be freemen or slaves; whether they are to have any property they can call their own…The fate of unborn millions will now depend, under God, on the courage and conduct of this army. Our cruel and unrelenting enemy leaves us only the choice of brave resistance, or the most abject submission. We have, therefore, to resolve to conquer or die.”
President George Washington, July 2, 1776, Writings Of George Washington
 
 
 
 
“Neither let us be slandered from our duty by false accusations against us, nor frightened from it by menaces of destruction to the government nor of dungeons to ourselves. Let us have faith that right makes might, and in that faith let us to the end dare to do our duty as we understand it.”
President Abraham Lincoln, 1860, Collected Works
 
 
 
 
“There can be no retreat when there’s no rear. You can’t retreat, or even withdraw, when you’re surrounded. The only thing you can do is to break out, and in order to do that you have to attack, and that is what we’re about to do. Heck, all we’re doing is attacking in a different direction.”
Marine Major General Oliver P. Smith, in Korea, 1950
 
 
 
 
“The only way we got out of Frozen Chosin is because a lot of young guys know how to fight. God bless the Chosin Marines. They are my brothers for life…Every Memorial Day my thoughts go drifting back to those youngsters who never came home. I can still see them as they were then. They’ll never grow old.”
Lieutenant Henry Litvin. A battalion surgeon with the Marines, Litvin was describing fighting out of the Chosin Reservoir in North Korea, 1950
 
 
 
 
“Because I am hard, you will not like me. But the more you hate me, the more you will learn. I am hard, but I am fair! There is no racial bigotry here! … Here you are all equally worthless! And my orders are to weed out all non-hackers who do not pack the gear to serve in my beloved Corps! Do you maggots understand that?”
R. Lee Ermey, as Gunnery Sergeant Harman in Full Metal Jacket
 
 
 
 
“The good company has no place for the officer who would rather be right than be loved, for the time will quickly come when he walks alone, and in battle no man may succeed in solitude.”
Brigadier General S.L.A. Marshall, 1964

Quotes December 20, 2019

“I knew the United States was in the war, up to the neck and in to the death. I went to bed and slept the sleep of the saved and thankful.”
Winston Churchill, 1941
 
 
 
 
“I hear a lot of crap about what a glorious thing it is to die for your country. It isn’t glorious—it’s stupid! You don’t go into battle to die for your country. You go into battle to make the other bastard die for his country.”
General George S. Patton, Jr., speaking to troops in 1941
 
 
 
 
“There is Jackson standing like a stone wall. Let us determine to die here, and we will conquer.”
Brigadier General Barnard Elliott Bee, Bull Run, 1861
 
 
 
 
“I have just read your dispatch about sore-tongued and fatigued horses. Will you pardon me for asking what the horses of yours have done since the Battle of Antietam that fatigue anything?”
Abraham Lincoln, telegram in frustration to General McClellan, 1862
 
 
 
 
“Lafayette, we are here.”
Colonel Charles E. Stanton, at the tomb of Lafayette in Paris, July 4, 1917, referring to the arrival of the American Expeditionary Forces
 
 
 
 
“The time is now at hand which must probably determine whether Americans are to be freemen or slaves; whether they are to have any property they can call their own…The fate of unborn millions will now depend, under God, on the courage and conduct of this army. Our cruel and unrelenting enemy leaves us only the choice of brave resistance, or the most abject submission. We have, therefore, to resolve to conquer or die.”
President George Washington, July 2, 1776, Writings Of George Washington
 
 
 
 
“Stand your ground. Don’t fire unless fired upon, but if they mean to have a war, let it begin here!”
Capt. John Parker to his 77 Minutemen at Lexington, Massachusetts, April 19, 1775
 
 
 
 
“Don’t fire until you see the whites of their eyes.”
William Prescott, Battle of Bunker Hill, 1775
 
 
 
 
By the rude bridge that arched the flood,
Their flag to April’s breeze unfurled,
Here once the embattled farmers stood
And fired the shot heard round the world.
Ralph Waldo Emerson, “Concord Hymn” (1837)

Quotes December 13, 2019

“I am the Infantry—Queen of Battle! For two centuries I have kept our Nation safe, purchasing freedom with my blood. To tyrants, I am the day of reckoning, to the suppressed, the hope for the future. Where the fighting is thick, there am I. I am the Infantry! Follow me!
Creed of the U.S. Army Infantry Center, Fort Benning, Georgia
 
 
 
 
“SEALs…fight in teams, only in teams, each man relying entirely on the others to do exactly the right thing. That’s how we do it, fighting as one in a team of four or maybe even 10 or even 20, but always as one unit, one mind, one strategy. We are, instinctively, always backing up, always covering, always moving to plug the gap or pave the way. That’s what makes us great.”
Navy SEAL Marcus Luttrell, Lone Survivor
 
 
 
 
“Bin Laden knew we were coming when he heard the helicopter. I had more respect for Ahmed al-Kuwaiti in the guesthouse because at least he tried to defend himself and his family. Bin Laden had more time to prepare than the others, and yet he still didn’t do anything. Did he believe his own message? Was he willing to fight the war he asked for? I don’t think so.”
Navy SEAL Mark Owen, No Easy Day
 
 
 
 
“People tell me I saved hundreds and hundreds of people. But I have to tell you: It’s not the people you saved that you remember. It’s the ones you couldn’t save.”
Navy SEAL Chris Kyle, American Sniper
 
 
 
 
“All the wrong people remember Vietnam. I think all the people who remember it should forget it, and all the people who forgot it should remember it.”
Michael Herr, The London Observer, 1989
 
 
 
 
“It doesn’t take a hero to order men into battle. It takes a hero to be one of those men who goes into battle.”
General H. Norman Schwarzkopf
 
 
 
 
“First, we are going to cut it off, and then we are going to kill it.”
General Colin Powell, on plans to destroy the Iraq Army during the Gulf War, 1991
 
 
 
 
“The good company has no place for the officer who would rather be right than be loved, for the time will quickly come when he walks alone, and in battle no man may succeed in solitude.”
Brigadier General S.L.A. Marshall, 1964
 
 
 
 
“Because I am hard, you will not like me. But the more you hate me, the more you will learn. I am hard, but I am fair! There is no racial bigotry here! … Here you are all equally worthless! And my orders are to weed out all non-hackers who do not pack the gear to serve in my beloved Corps! Do you maggots understand that?”
R. Lee Ermey, as Gunnery Sergeant Harman in Full Metal Jacket
 
 
 
 
“There can be no retreat when there’s no rear. You can’t retreat, or even withdraw, when you’re surrounded. The only thing you can do is to break out, and in order to do that you have to attack, and that is what we’re about to do. Heck, all we’re doing is attacking in a different direction.”
Marine Major General Oliver P. Smith, in Korea, 1950
 
 
 
 
“The only way we got out of Frozen Chosin is because a lot of young guys know how to fight. God bless the Chosin Marines. They are my brothers for life…Every Memorial Day my thoughts go drifting back to those youngsters who never came home. I can still see them as they were then. They’ll never grow old.”
Lieutenant Henry Litvin. A battalion surgeon with the Marines, Litvin was describing fighting out of the Chosin Reservoir in North Korea, 1950
 
 
 
 
“Fix bayonets! Charge! Everybody goes with me!”
U.S. Army Capt. Lewis Millett, in Korea, 1951
 
 
 
 
“In the final choice, a soldier’s pack is not so heavy a burden as a prisoner’s chains.”
President Dwight D. Eisenhower, First Inaugural Address, 1953
 
 
 
 
“There is always inequity in life. Some men are killed in a war, and some men are wounded, and some men are stationed in the Antarctic and some are stationed in San Francisco. It’s very hard in military or personal life to assure complete equality. Life is unfair.”
President John F. Kennedy, 1962
 
 
 
 
“Sighted sub, sank same.”
U.S. Navy Pilot Donald F. Mason, 1942, in one of the shortest victory messages of all time
 
 
 
 
“I gave him the whole nine yards!”
A P-51 Mustang pilot, using a WWII expression referring to the plane’s 27-foot-long ammo belt.
 
 
 
 
“Uncommon valor was a common virtue.”
Admiral Chester Nimitz, in Iwo Jima, 1945
 
 
 
 
“Retreat? Hell, we just got here!”
Marine Captain Lloyd Williams, answering a messenger from the French Commander as Marines arrive at the Belleau Wood sector in WWI.
 
 
 
 
“Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few.”
“We shall go on to the end. We shall fight in France, we shall fight on the seas and oceans, we shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the air, we shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be, we shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and on the streets, we shall fight in the hills, we shall never surrender.”
Winston Churchill, June 4, 1940

Quotes November 01, 2019

“No guts, no glory.”
Frederick C. Blesse
 
 
 
 
“We sleep safely at night because rough men stand ready to visit violence on those who would harm us.”
Winston Churchill
 
 
 
 
“Praise the bridge that carried you over.”
George Colman\
 
 
 
 
“Damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead.”
David G. Farragut:
 
 
 
 
“Neither a wise nor a brave man lies down on the tracks of history to wait for the train of the future to run over him.”
“Leadership is the art of getting someone else to do something you want done because he wants to do it.”
“Only our individual faith in freedom can keep us free.”
“The best morale exists when you never hear the word mentioned. When you hear it it’s usually lousy.”
“Dwight D. Eisenhower
 
 
 
 
“I offer neither pay, nor quarters, nor food; I offer only hunger, thirst, forced marches, battles, and death. Let him who loves his country with his heart, and not merely his lips, follow me.”
Giuseppe Garibaldi
 
 
 
 
“If you find yourself in a fair fight, you didn’t plan your mission properly.”
David Hackworth
 
 
 
 
“I only regret that I have but one life to give for my country.”
Nathan Hale
 
 
 
 
“Out of every one hundred men, ten shouldn’t even be there, eighty are just targets, nine are the real fighters, and we are lucky to have them, for they make the battle. Ah, but the one, one is a warrior, and he will bring the others back.”
Heraclitus
 
 
 
 
“Whoever said the pen is mightier than the sword obviously never encountered automatic weapons.”
“It is fatal to enter a war without the will to win it.”
Douglas MacArthur
 
 
 
 
“Live for something rather than die for nothing.”
“The soldier is the Army. No army is better than its soldiers. The Soldier is also a citizen. In fact, the highest obligation and privilege of citizenship is that of bearing arms for one’s country.”
“Lead me, follow me, or get the hell out of my way.”
“Never tell people how to do things. Tell them what to do and they will surprise you with their ingenuity.”
“No good decision was ever made in a swivel chair.”
George S. Patton Jr.
 
 
 
 
“We have met the enemy and they are ours.”
Oliver Hazard Perry
 
 
 
 
“Perpetual optimism is a force multiplier.”
“There are no secrets to success. It is the result of preparation, hard work, learning from failure.”
Colin Powell
 
 
 
 
“The truth of the matter is that you always know the right thing to do. The hard part is doing it.”
Norman Schwarzkopf, Jr.
 
 
 
 
“A leader is the man who has the ability to get other people to do what they don’t want to do, and like it.”
Harry S. Truman
 
 
 
 
“I don’t know what effect these men will have upon the enemy, but, by God, they terrify me.”
Arthur Wellesley, First Duke of Wellington (1769-1852)
 
 
 
 
“The military don’t start wars. Politicians start wars.”
William C. Westmoreland
 
 
 
 
“War is hell.”
William Tecumseh Sherman

Quotes September 13, 2019

Strategy without tactics is the slowest route to victory. Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.
Sun Tzu
 
 
 
 
Blood is just red sweat.
Enson Inoue
 
 
 
 
You must not fight too often with one enemy, or you will teach him all your art of war.
Napoleon Bonaparte
 
 
 
 
“The belief in the possibility of a short decisive war appears to be one of the most ancient and dangerous of human illusions.”
Robert Lynd
 
 
 
 
“So we go on and don’t do it, and let the war go on. Over a period of 3 and a half or four years, we did burn down every town in North Korea. And every town in South Korea. And what? Killed off 20% of the Korean population. What I’m trying to say is, if once you make a decision to use military force to solve your problem – then you ought to use it. And use an overwhelming military force. Use too much. And deliberately use too much. So that you don’t make an error on the other side, and not quite have enough. And you roll over everything to start with. And you close it down just like that. You save resources. You save lives. Not only your own but the enemies too. And the recovery is quicker. And everybody is back to peaceful existence – hopefully in a shorter period of time.”
Gen. Curtis Lemay, on the all-out bombing campaign the U.S. didn’t do at the beginning of the Korean War as quoted in Dan Carlin’s “The Destroyer of Worlds”
 
 
 
 
“Debt was ignoble. Courage was a virtue. Mothers were beloved. Marriage was a sacrament. Divorce was disgraceful. . . . All these and ‘God Bless America’ and Christmas or Hanukkah and the certitude that victory in the war would assure their continuance into perpetuity—all this led you into battle, and sustained you as you fought, and comforted you if you fell, and, if it came to that, justified your death to all who loved you as you had loved them.”
William Manchester on America’s role in World War II, Goodbye Darkness: A Memoir of the Pacific War
 
 
 
 

“The power to cause pain is the only power that matters, the power to defend yourself and your loved ones, because if you cannot inflict pain on others then you are always subject to those who can, and nothing and no one will ever truly protect you.”
Unknown

Quotes May 10, 2019

“Engage your brain before you engage your weapon.”
Gen. James Matttis
 
 
 
 
“Warriors take chances. Like everyone else, they fear failing, but they refuse to let fear control them.”
ancient Samurai saying
 
 
 
 
“Courage is doing what you’re afraid to do. There can be no courage unless you’re scared.”
Eddie Rickenbacker, World War I hero
 
 
 
 
“Never forget that no military leader has ever become great without audacity.”
Karl von Clausewitz
 
 
 
 
“No captain can do very wrong if he places his ship alongside that of the enemy.”
Admiral Horatio Nelson
 
 
 
 
“[Admiral Nelson’s counsel] guided me time and again. On the eve of the critical battle of Santa Cruz, in which the Japanese ships outnumbered ours more than two to one, I sent my task force commanders this dispatch: ATTACK REPEAT ATTACK. They did attack, heroically, and when the battle was done, the enemy turned away.

All problems, personal, national, or combat, become smaller if you don’t dodge them, but confront them. Touch a thistle timidly, and it pricks you; grasp it boldly, and its spines crumble. Carry the battle to the enemy! Lay your ship alongside his!”
Admiral William “Bull” Halsey