The War Diary of Lieutenant General Geoffrey Keyes
Published by: The University Press of Kentucky
Imprint: The University Press of Kentucky
Sales Date: 01/16/2024
Nineteen months after Japanese forces attacked Pearl Harbor and forced the United States to enter World War II, boats carrying the 7th US Army landed on the shores of southern Sicily. Dubbed Operation Husky, the campaign to establish an Allied foothold in Sicily was led by two of the most noted American tacticians of the twentieth century: George S. Patton Jr. and Geoffrey Keyes.
While Patton is the subject of numerous books and films, Keyes's life and achievements have gone unrecognized, but his anonymity is by no means an accurate reflection of the value of his contributions and dedicated service in World War II and the succeeding cold war.
Patton's Tactician: The War Diary of Lieutenant General Geoffrey Keyes is the first transcribed edition of Keyes's personal diary to be published. Edited by James W. Holsinger Jr., the diary begins in October 1942, prior to the invasion of French Morocco and Keyes's engagement in World War II and the Cold War. Holsinger has integrated a variety of related sources, including correspondence between Keyes, Patton, and Eisenhower. A day-to-day chronicle of Keyes's experiences in the World War II Mediterranean Theater and the early days of the Cold War in occupied Germany and Austria, Patton's Tactician is an invaluable primary source that offers readers a glimpse into the mind of one of America's most important World War II corps commanders.
Introduction: A Biographical Sketch of Lieutenant General Geoffrey Keyes
1. Operation TORCH and the North African Campaign
2. The Sicilian Campaign
3. Crossing the Rapido
4. On to Rome
5. The River Crossings
6. The End of the War
7. The Occupation of Germany
8. High Commissioner for Austria
This book is an extremely insightful way to better understand the inner workings between several important leaders both military and civilian during and after WWII. Holsinger filled in the blank spaces by providing additional documented information allowing the diary writings by Lieutenant General Keyes to come to life. Additionally, he provides the reader a chance to follow the events that led to General Keyes becoming the American High Commissioner to Austria.~Major General Robert L. Ruth
Of the thirty-four American officers who commanded corps in active operations in WWII, none did so as long and few as successfully as Lieutenant General Keyes; yet his role in securing Allied victories in Sicily and Italy went ignored until now. The author's excellent edited and annotated rendering of Keyes' diaries fill that void. Of equal importance, Keyes' observations as military governor in post-war Germany and American high commissioner in occupied Austria offer penetrating insights into these under-studied areas of research.~Daniel K. R. Crosswell, author of Beetle: The Life of General Walter Bedell Smith
World War II scholars and history buffs alike will find Lieutenant General Geoffrey Keyes wartime diary a fascinating read. James Holsinger provides historical context as the reader follows General Keyes wartime experience from North Africa, to Sicily, and throughout the Italian Campaign. The diary captures the many challenges Keyes faced serving under General George Patton and General Mark Clark and provides important insight into the complex American war in Italy.~Steve R. Waddell, author of United States Army Logistics: From the American Revolution to 9/11
Imagine what it was really like working for Patton. Holsinger expertly weaves a greater strategic narrative into the diary of Lieutenant General Geoffrey Keyes, providing an unvarnished glimpse into life as a corps commander under one of the most infamous generals in American history. The result is a compelling perspective on the war in the Mediterranean and the nuanced challenges of conflict termination. This is a must-read for anyone interested in the Second World War and the challenges of command.~David D. Dworak, author of War of Supply: World War II Allied Logistics in the Mediterranean
Patton's Tactician proves that WWII can still yield fresh material. This wonderfully edited book, with effective contextualizing of the diary entries, brings to light the accomplishments and thoughts of Geoffrey Keyes, a key figure during the war and the immediate post-war period. Readers will gain a deep appreciation for his command of II Corps during the Italian campaign and for his handling of post-war politics while serving in high-level roles in Austria. Enjoyable to read and highly recommended.~Major J.N. Rickard, CD, PhD, Canadian Army Command and Staff College