Patton Diary Entry - 1942 Kent Lambert Incident?

Discussion in 'US Units' started by Dave55, Jan 18, 2019.

  1. Dave55

    Dave55 Atlanta, USA

    Came across this today. Patton mentions "Kent Lambert Incident".

    Anyone know what that means?

    He went on to say that General Marshall had wired him that my repeated mistakes have shaken the confidence of the country and the War Department. General Marshall even harked back to the Kent Lambert incident in November 1942--certainly a forgiving s.o.b.

    Holograph diary: George S. Patton. Diary entry, May 1, 1944, Churchill and the Great Republic (A Library of Congress Interactive Exhibition, Text Version)


    I found out that Col Kent Lambert had been some type of operations officer on the staff of Patton's First Armored Corps but nothing else about him yet.
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2019
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  2. canuck

    canuck Closed Account


    That one is hard to pin down. He indeed was Patton's G3 during the Torch landings and died at the ripe old age of 91 but the "incident" is tough to trace.
  3. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member

  4. pamak

    pamak Junior Member

    Since the incident is not related to the Holocaust, I think we can use Irving' s work

    From The War Between the Generals Allied High Command (EN, 1981, 451 p.).pdf

    Pages 108-9 of the book (or pages 113-4 of the pdf file)

    Eisenhower quoted Marshall: Patton’s mistakes had shaken the confidence of the country and the War Department. “General Marshall even harked back to the Kent Lambert incident,” he added. Patton thought, Certainly a forgiving s.o.b! He recalled the case well: Colonel Kent G. Lambert had commanded part of the 1st Armoured Division at the entry into Bizerta, Tunisia, the first successful attack by American armour in the war. But then he had written to his wife about secret matters, sending the letter by a friend to avoid army censors, whom he cursed in the letter. It was intercepted. Nothing could save Lambert. Patton had often sent letters home by friends, but for the record he reprimanded Lambert: “Had it not been for your stupid act I would congratulate you for your magnificent performance, but I repeat, no magnificent performance as a soldier can get by in the face of stupidity.” Privately, he had asked Everett Hughes (who had noted, “I may have to bust L.”) to destroy the evidence, adding perhaps prophetically: “Men like Lambert will not survive this war, and it is too bad to lose them for trivial reasons.” George Marshall had, however, taken an unmerciful view. When Eisenhower had recommended Lambert’s promotion to general a few days later, he refused.
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  5. Steve Mac

    Steve Mac Very Senior Member

    This article detracts from the appalling performance of US forces, including Patton, in North Africa. Fredenhall gets all the blame for the US failures there, but performance after his demise did not improve; despite the ‘Patton’ movie which paints the canvas to the contrary. However, a shining US light that came out of North Africa was Bradley, who after Sicily was promoted and by D-Day was Patton’s boss. Bradley is the only US General which Montgomery would have been happy to serve under, which given Montgomery’s opinion of himself is a HUGE compliment to Bradley.
  6. Stuart Avery

    Stuart Avery In my wagon & not a muleteer.

    I normally type in black to make my point! In the future, i may choose a colour from the rainbow?;)
  7. pamak

    pamak Junior Member

    I also type in black when I make MY point. When I post the point that others make, I use blue to make the distinction. I assume there is nothing wrong with that approach.
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  8. TTH

    TTH Senior Member

    Most historians would dissent from your view; US performance in North Africa was by no means entirely poor and it did improve as the campaign went on. Patton's offensive operations may not have been brilliant but he did fight a good defensive action at El Guettar. The operations of II Corps under Bradley in the final drive on Bizerta were also successful.
  9. Charley Fortnum

    Charley Fortnum Dreaming of Red Eagles

    And I would add that from all I've read there seems to be a consensus that a freshly trained and equipped army fighting overeas against a highly experienced foe (all be it one depleted in manpower and materiel) in unfamiliar terrain without significant expeditionary experience had every right to expect a bloodying. And they didn't just walk about unfazed from the experience--there was an autopsy (a quiet one for obvious reasons) and future practice was adjusted. The reasons are different, but it's not as if the British Army covered themeselves in glory at the start of the war.

    No sources to hand, but I think I picked up a lot of the impression from reading about and listening to work on Terry Allen.
  10. Charley Fortnum

    Charley Fortnum Dreaming of Red Eagles

    Indent and italicise please, Gentlemen. Once you start with the wacky fonts and glowing hues, you're only a few steps away from reading The Guardian and wearing ladies' undergarments

    It really doesn't matter as long as it is readable.
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2019
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  11. pamak

    pamak Junior Member

    Got it!

    Next time I will do it the way people are accustomed here to cite sources.
    By the way, talking about "rainbows" and "undergarments" is not exactly reassuring that you have escaped the danger...:D
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  12. pamak

    pamak Junior Member

    I am also of the same opinion.
    I think the US Army performed well because it adapted quickly to the realities of war which inevitably exposed the deficiencies of a peace-time army.
    On the other hand, some people believe that Fredendall received too much of the blame since it is more convenient to personify failures instead of criticizing the deeper structural deficiencies of the system.

    There is an interesting chapter in defense of Fredendall on chapter 10 (page 143) of the following link.
  13. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member

    I usually highlight such bits in RED so its your post does as you wish

  14. Stuart Avery

    Stuart Avery In my wagon & not a muleteer.

    You also like to use many question marks. ??????:smug: I've made my point. We are not children in the classroom. Lets get back to the thread. Charley, I've noticed your edit.:)

  15. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member

    I do ?

    Relax its a forum, theres enough rules and regs around, its nice to see some colour


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