As a retired army officer and an adjunct history professor I thought it was important to review what I consider the best war movies depicting the challenges of leadership and the command of men.
"A Gathering of Eagles" is one of the best movies showing the daily grind, time spent away from family, and challenges for leaders during the “Cold War.” SAC’s motto “Peace Through Strength” was very appropriate. Seen by most people as one of the offensive arms in the American arsenal, it actually kept the nuclear peace with Russia because it was so well equipped and had highly trained personnel. SAC’s success is due in no small part to Gen. Curtis LeMay, an Air Force strategic genius. A cigar smoking tough as nails leader, who knew what he wanted to get done and was the kind of leader that always got 110% out of his people.
OK, now a little about the movie. Air Force Colonel Jim Caldwell (Rock Hudson) has just been re-assigned as a cold war B-52 commander who must shape up his men to pass a grueling inspection that the previous commander had failed, and had been fired for. He is also recently married, and as a tough commanding officer doing whatever he has to do to shape his men up, his wife sees a side to him that she hadn't seen before.
This movie has a similar story line to the “Strategic Air Command” This movie is great at depicting the importance of a leader serving as a mentor to prepare subordinates of increasing leadership responsibility.
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