Wednesday, February 22, 2012

The LeMay Look

In rummaging through pictures of my father, Nathan Harrell Moran, I came across one of him in his dress uniform glaring at the camera. Dad was not one to smile at a camera but in this instance there may be a reason.

At the time Dad was in the Air Force one of the better known Generals was Curtis LeMay the pugnacious leader of the Strategic Air Command. LeMay was known as a no nonsense leader.  LeMay was often belligerent and didn't censor his words.  He was the inspiration for the character of the paranoid Brigadier General Jack D. Ripper in the movie Dr. Strangelove.  Though he was often caricatured the fact remains that he was the right man in the right place at the right time and many lives were saved because of it.

Quotes by Curtis Emerson LeMay:
If you kill enough of them, they stop fighting.

Every soldier thinks something of the moral aspects of what he is doing.  But all war is immoral and if you let that bother you, you're not a good soldier. 

We should bomb Vietnam back into the stone age.

And from his autobiography:
I had blood upon my hands as I did this, but not because I preferred to bathe in blood.  It was because I was part of a primitive world where men still had to kill in order to avoid being killed, or in order to avoid having their beloved Nation stricken and emasculated.

Compare Dads picture to LeMay and you might just see the resemblance too.

Gen. Curtis LeMay
Nathan H. Moran