A Review of Citizen Soldier

Stephen Ambrose introduces us to his book by setting the scene on the morning after the Allies begin their assault on the European continent.We are introduced to Lt. Waverly Wray, the XO for Company D of the 505th Parachute Infantry Regiment.Through the next few pages of the prologue Ambrose illustrates heroism within Lieutenant Wray demonstrating a certain strength that would carry the U.S. and her allies through the War. In terrain unfamiliar to American soldiers Lt. Wray moves through thick hedgerows unbeknown to several enemy officers Wray suprises them and kills eight Germany soldiers with a single shot to the head.Later in this section Ambrose asks the question "how well General George C. Marshalll and that relative handful of professional officers serving in the U.S. Army in 1940 had done in creating and army of citizen soldiers…?".From his utilization of Lt. Wray, Ambrose seems to indicate that the American men of this decade would rise to this task.
After Allies established themselves on the beaches of the European Continent the difficult push through the French countryside began.As the American Army advanced they became hindered by the unexpected nature of this terrain.From ancient times French farms had been separated by tall thick brush known as hedgerows.These Hedgerows proved difficult for an advancing infantry to move through.The difficult nature of movement was further enhanced by the excellent covered defenses the hedgerows provided to the Germans.The fighting in these terrain features had not been expected by the U.S. Army, intelligence had overlooked these obstacles and soldiers as a result did not receive the proper training needed. Techniques to overcome these obstacles had to be learned as the infantry advanced.This inadequate preparation cost lives and time.Slowly, American ingenuity prevailed as tank crews and infantry members tested methods to defeat the…