Thoughts on the military and military activities of a diverse nature. Free-ranging and eclectic.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Tomahawk III. [Conclusion]

This is coolbert:

Again, from the comment [regarding the "hatchet" incident] of an anonymous reader to the blog:

"First, it was not a General, it was a full bird Colonel . . . Also, the career of the "General" (really a Colonel at the time) was not over by a long shot. He spent another tour in Vietnam (66-67), later commanded a unit in Korea (2nd ID I think), and also commanded the 82nd Abn Div and RETIRED at the rank of Lt. General. His tactics are still taught and used to this day."

From this description I am able to infer with a high degree of certainty that this is Hank Emerson.

Career officer, West Point grad [class of 1947] known as the "Gunfighter".

A highly respected [renowned!] combat commander. Mentioned in the same breath as David Hackworth, Harry Summers, Anthony Herbert.

The career of Hank Emerson DID NOT end with Vietnam. Emerson did command:

* "the 2nd Infantry Division in South Korea in the mid-1970's"

* "He later served as commander of the XVIII Airborne Corps and Fort Bragg"

Was also a Special Forces officer. Saw combat in both Korea and Vietnam. Noted for innovative combat techniques and tactics.

"gained recognition in the Korean war for his tactical ability on the battlefield. He conceived the methods employed so effectively against the Viet Cong called 'the checkerboard' and 'Jitterbug.'"

Also noted for his eccentric personality:

* "carrying a cowboy-style six-shooter in place of a regulation Colt .45 semi-automatic pistol." [the "Gunfighter"]

[this would have classified as an "unauthorized" weapon. Recall what I said about deploying overseas through Oakland Army Terminal [OART]. All firearms and edged weapons were confiscated. Having such in your possession was a courts martial offense.]

* "he insisted his troops train only at night"

* "made them [the troops under his command] repeatedly watch the television film Brian's Song to promote racial harmony."

["Brian's Song" of course is the movie dealing with the friendship between Brian Piccolo and Gale Sayers of the Chicago Bears. One white man and one black man in the same backfield, both as rookies. Had an unusual close relationship, Piccolo suffering from terminal cancer and dying in his prime!! GALE SAYERS TO THIS DAY VISITS U.S. TROOPS ALL OVER THE WORLD, GIVING MOTIVATIONAL SPEECHES PROMOTING HARMONY AND HOW TEAMWORK CAN LEAD TO SUCCESS!!]

NOW, FOR THE HARD PART. Here is an excerpt from the Ranger Against War blog: "[Hank Emerson] came out as gay following his much decorated service in the U.S. military. Would we be any the better for having lost a fine soldier as Hank Emerson because of his sexual orientation?"

More correctly too it can be stated that Colonel Aaron Banks was the "father" of the Special Forces. What role Emerson played I cannot say. As to the allegation of "being gay", I cannot confirm or deny!!

"No person can command a nuclear equipped unit if even the appearance of wrong-doing exists, even if totally unfounded!!"

[I would have to assume that when the XVIII Airborne Corps would deploy into combat, it would carry nuclear artillery rounds as part of the common load?? XVIII Airborne, at that exact moment, becomes a nuclear equipped unit??!!]

Am I being too harsh here!!?? I am at a loss!!



Blogger rangeragainstwar said...

Hi Albert,

I stumbled upon this site today, and was surprised to see mention of Frank Emerson. I know that Ranger will want to make comment later, as he has mentioned Emerson before.

In addressing the issue of Emerson's homosexuality, we are faced with the absurdity of the military's exclusionary stance toward homosexual males.

We have recently lost many much-needed Arabic interpretors due to this absurd bigotry. Also, the first Marine to lose a limb in the current conflict came out I believe earlier this year as being gay.

When will this society get over it's foolish, mean-spirited exclusionary and petty provincial mindset?


10:36 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mr Anonymouse again ;)

Yes sir, you are exactly correct. The person I was referring to was in fact Hank "The Gunfighter" Emerson (also known as "Hatchet Hank" at that time). Definitely one of the greatest military leaders of the modern era.

11:25 AM

Blogger bryan said...

I stumbled across this blog while looking for some other info.Noticed a lot of references to Hank "Gunfighter"Emerson.I would just like to say that i know Hank and he's a good,honest man.About him "coming out as gay" i really find suspect,i won't ask him as it's none of my business.All i can say is that he has been a good friend to my Dad and brother,i've only met him through them.I can also say he is in good health and living out his life away from the "lights" as much as possible,although he does put his name to things he believes in.I won't say where he lives because i'm not sure he would want that,but i will ask him and update this.I will say he spends the winters where it's warm.Likes to fish for trout in the summer time and goes deep sea fishing in Florida in the spring.

First couple times i met him,i had no idea who he was,then something clicked in my mind out of some books i'd read about Vietnam.I brought this up with my Dad,and he said"yup,thats him,wouldn't know it would ya?"Then we went out to his place for a bbq,he's got a lot of memorablia about his service and he's proud of it and should be.Anyway,just thought somebody might like to know he's doing well.

11:08 PM

Blogger rangeragainstwar said...

This is one post that i regret writing.
whether Emerson is or isn't is immaterial. He was a fine soldier. Nothing can deminish this.
I will strive not to write anything that has no constructive value.
jim hruska

7:17 PM

Blogger Joed Miller said...

My father was the 5th Regimental combat Unit Captain when deployed to Korea. His name was Ltc. Archibald Sanford Miller Jr.. He was close friends with many men of valor due to his service during WW2 & the Korean War. One of his very close friends right up until the day he passed on was General "Hank" Emerson. I still contact the General on occasion and the man (not the General) always kindly replies to me. He is a man of honor, a man of decoration and humility. I find the fact that any man of lesser value to our way of life, that any man whose actions did not preserve many lives and our way of life making declarations about the Generals life to be extremely "ignorant..." ! Here is a man who promoted equality and dedicated his entire life to every American and in that we should be proud. Who he is, where he lives, what his choices were and are in life are of no consequence to anyone except the man himself. I am proud to call this American hero my families friend and ind comfort in the friendship he and all the men of the 5th held for each other and I for one am sad that this entire generation is almost all gone from our lives. Please do not speak of that which you do not know and instead of wondering what anyone else is simply remember that men like my father and the General are why America is the best Nation on Earth!!!! My God Bless each man and woman of ALL religions, of ALL nationalities, of ALL choices in life forever. Just remember that he who judges others is the very same person who will be judged by whatever diety they pray to each evening. So beware of casting aspirations that neither matter nor are of any single mans place to do so !!!
With the Best of Regards to EVERY AMERICAN... Humbly Yours, Joed Miller PS- anyone who has information on the 5th from Hawaii please contact me and I will share the photos I have of the entire unit !!(

11:43 PM


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