Over the years, the United States has produced many remarkable generals and admirals, but only a few have stood out as world-class strategists and leaders of troops. As Veterans Day approaches on November 11, let’s remember and celebrate them. Here is my list of America’s finest 11 commanders.
Chester W. Nimitz, 1885 – 1966 (World War II)
Few admirals in history have been faced with a more daunting and unenviable mission than was the former submarine driver Admiral Chester Nimitz upon taking command of a decimated Pacific Fleet in the still smoldering wreckage of Pearl Harbor in December of 1941. He arrived to find a devastated and demoralized anchorage, still reeling from the surprise attack that saw four battleships sunk and four damaged, along with several shot up cruisers and destroyers, some 300 aircraft destroyed or damaged, and over 2,400 killed and another 1,100 wounded. All across the Western and South Pacific, the rampaging Japanese were sweeping aside or capturing Allied armies in the Philippines, Wake Island, the Dutch East Indies, and Malaysia.
Following the devastating raid on the fleet’s main base in Hawaii, Nimitz was down to…