Brothers in Arms
May 15, 2014 joedemadio 1 Comment
The title of a book about the first all-black armored unit to see combat in World War 2. It seems to be a normal thing, black people fulfilling the role of a soldier. I wasn’t always like that.
In the 20th century racism played a big role in the society. Racial segregation showed up all over the united states and so in the army. It was until the end of 1944 when the first all-black armored unit, the 761st tank battalion, saw combat for the first time.
The reason I’m writing this is because I’m against racism in any form. Therefore I found it fascinating that George S. Patton decided to take command over this battalion and to treat them like normal people. I’d love to share a quote from Patton himself.
“Men, you are the first Negro tankers to ever fight in the American Army. I would never have asked you if you weren’t good. I have nothing but the best in my Army. I don’t care what color you are, so long as you go up there and kill those Kraut sonsabitches. Everyone has their eyes on you and is expecting great things from you. Most of all, your race is looking forward to your success. Don’t let them down, and , damn you, don’t let me down! — George S. Patton, November 2, 1944, near Nancy, France.
I found it very interesting to read about all kinds of racism these soldiers faced. The reason why it’s so good is because you’re seeing the war through their eyes. It get’s really personal and that’s what I love about reading war books. It gives you a whole different perspective of the ‘greatest generation’
The 761st was not only the first all-black unit to see combat in World War 2, but they were really good at doing their job. They fought at one of the bloodiest battles in World War 2, the battle of the bulge. While defending themselves against the Fuhrer Belgeit Brigade they tried to open the main road west of Bastogne. Fighting in the woods near Tillet, a village name you’d probably never hear about ever again, they aided other elements of Patton’s Army to break the German encirclement of Bastogne. The 761st really proved themselves as soldiers. It shows that your race does’nt say who you are or what you are and that we all should be treated equal.
If you’re interested in reading the book, the title is Brothers in Arms by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Anthony Walton.
I’d love to end with the motto of the 716st.
Come Out Fighting!