General Robert Eichelberger Writes About Russia And Japan
General Robert Lawrence Eichelberger was one of the top military commanders in WWII and commanded the Eighth United States Army in the Southwest Pacific Area. Early on in his career he served as assistant to Brigadier General William S. Graves. In 1918 when President Woodrow Wilson decided to support the Allied intervention in the Russian Civil War, he sent General Graves to command the American Expeditionary Force in Siberia with Eichelberger as his Chief of Staff. Eichelberger found himself thrust into a complex political, diplomatic and military environment. He became convinced that America's objectives in Siberia were not necessarily the same as those of her French and British allies, but it was far from clear what they actually were, especially when the State Department and the War Department did not always agree. American policy called for protecting the Trans Siberian Railway, but this was under the control of Admiral Alexander Kolchak's White Army forces, that Eichelberger considered to be "murderers" and "cutthroats."Eichelberger received the Distinguished Service Cross for repeated acts of bravery during the Siberia assignment. In this confidential letter to a historian he discusses his role in the American Expeditionary Force and shares his observations of the Japanese Army which he predicted would be more than a match for American troops. An important letter, dated 1940, one year before the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. Signed, "Robert L. Eichelberger"