Goodpaster, Andrew J.


1975 ALS before un-retiring to become West Point Superintendent, assisting Army War College with a publication


Type: Letter
Description: (1915- 2005)  USMA 1939, US Army General, NATO Supreme Allied Commander Europe (SACEUR) 1969-1974 retirement, and Commander in Chief of the US European Command (CINCEUR) 1969-74. As such, he was the commander of all NATO and US military forces stationed in Europe and the surrounding regions in the Cold War.  He returned to the military as 51st West Point Superintendent 1977-81 then retired again.

During WW II, he commanded the 48th Combat Engineer Battalion in North Africa and Italy, awarded DSC, Silver Star and 2 Purple Hearts. His combat experience was cut short in January 1944 when he was severely wounded. After his wounds healed, he was with the War Planning Office under General Marshall for the duration of the war.

Goodpaster was seen by many as the quintessential “soldier-scholar”, receiving a 1950 Princeton Ph.D. in politics after completing a doctoral dissertation, “National Technology and International Politics.”  He was also Staff Secretary and Defense Liaison Officer to President Eisenhower 1954–61; Advisor to Presidents Johnson, Nixon and Carter; Commander of the San Francisco District of the Army Corps of Engineers; Commander of the 8th Infantry in Germany 1961-62; Director of the Joint Staff, Office of the Joint Chiefs of Staff 1966–67; Commandant of the National War College 1967–68; Deputy Commander of the US Military Assistance Command, Vietnam (MACV) 1968–69.

After retiring in 1974, he was senior fellow at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars 1975–76, and taught at The Citadel, and wrote For the Common Defense published 1977. He was brought back to active duty as USMA Superintendent after the 1976 West Point cheating scandal involving 151 cadets. Although he had retired as General (4 stars), he voluntarily served as Superintendent at lower rank of Lieutenant General (3 stars), since the position carries that rank.

In his later years, Goodpaster was vocal in advocating the reduction of nuclear weapons. Later his position evolved to advocating for elimination of all nuclear weapons. In 1996, he co-authored a statement for the Global Security Institute advocating complete elimination of nuclear weapons due to their danger and lack of military utility. Goodpaster served on the American Security Council and founded the Committee on the Present Danger, emphasizing the Soviet Union’s military threat and a corresponding need for a strong defense.

ALS “AJGoodpaster” on 11 x 8 ½ off-white, red-imprinted letterhead as “Fellow of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, Smithsonian Institution Building, Washington”, August 15 (1975), to General (DeWitt) Smith. General Goodpaster has read summary papers sent by Smith along with the compendium of last year’s papers published as New Dynamics in National Strategy. He understands from Col. Pizzi that the target date, assuming clearances are soon completed, might be November. Goodpaster thinks it possible for him to do this assuming scope of the overview is comparable to General (Maxwell) Taylor’s last year. If satisfactory, he will grateful to have full texts of 1975 papers at an early date even if subject to further editions, as a basis for his work. “Col. Pizzi” penciled, likely by Gen. Smith, at top right.

The Strategic Studies Institute of the US Army War College sponsored a Security Issues Symposium 16-18 March 1975 attended by senior policymakers in international affairs, national defense, intelligence, and land, air and sea operations. 17 essays were written on various aspects of national security throughout the world for presentation at the Symposium. A memorandum, Interests and Strategies in an Era of Detente: An Overview was published December 1 1975 presenting an overview of the Symposium papers as well as General Goodpasters own views on détente.

DeWitt C. Smith, Jr. (1920-1985) US Army officer, former deputy Army Chief of Staff, twice (and longest-serving) Army War College commandant 1974 -77, 1978-80. Joined Army 1942, commissioned 2nd lieutenant, served with 4th Armor in combat after Normandy to end of the War. Wounded 3 times, he was awarded Silver Star, 2 Bronze Stars for Valor, and 3 Purple Hearts. Discharged 1946, returned to active duty for Korean War, stayed in the military. He was an aide to Army Chief of Staff Gen. Maxwell Taylor, served in the “Old Guard” at Fort Myer, and was a battalion executive officer and commander in Germany. He served at the Pentagon before going to the Army War College. He commanded a 1st Infantry combat brigade in Vietnam. In 1970, under his leadership, Fort Carson, Colo. was made an initial test site for the modern volunteer Army concept. He retired 1980.

Condition: Very good, 2 horizontal mail folds, 3 minor small hole punch tears at left edges

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