Wednesday, December 29, 2010

You Think You Know About Gen. Patton?

Yah, hey, we've all seen the movie, so we must all know about Patton the man, no? A pistoleer, 'hot rod' General who drove his men very hard, and of course, there's 'the Slap.'

Maybe you don't know enough.

...On December 8, 1944, General Patton called Msgr. James H. O'Neill, Chief Chaplain of the Third Army, and asked, "Do you have a good prayer for weather? We must do something about those rains if we are to win the war." It had rained since September. Monsignor O'Neill could not find a prayer for weather in his books, so he composed one...Patton liked the prayer and the cards. He ordered 250,000 copies printed up and distributed to every man in the Third Army.

The cards went to the troops on December 12th.

On December 20, to the consternation of the Germans, the delight of the Americans, and the surprise of the weather forecasters, the rains stopped. Patton's Christmas prayer was answered. For the better part of a week came bright, clear skies and perfect weather.

American pilots could now see, and their planes knocked out hundreds of tanks, killed thousands of enemy troops, and cut off enemy supply lines. With that support, American troops who could see the Germans could now win the fight. The Allies were victorious in the Battle of the Bulge, and the war was soon over.


1 comment:

Jim said...

This particular incident was portrayed (with some license) in the 1970 movie.

Patton was a very religious man. In the movie when asked if he had time to read his Bible he answered "I sure do. Every goddamn day."