Robert H. Scales
|Robert H. Scales, Jr.|
August 6, 1944 |
|Allegiance||United States of America|
|Service/branch||United States Army|
|Years of service||1966-2000|
|Commands held||Army War College|
|Awards||Distinguished Service Medal
Legion of Merit
His father, Robert Scales Sr., was a career Army officer who graduated Officer Candidate School at Fort Belvoir, Virginia, completed the Engineer Officer Basic Course and worked with amphibious vehicles in Florida, where his parents met, before piloting amphibious landing craft in the Pacific campaign of World War II. Robert Jr. was born in Gainesville, Florida, in 1944, but then “scurried all over the world.”
After graduating from West Point in 1966, he was commissioned as a field artillery officer and sent to Germany, not Vietnam. After two years in Europe, he was posted to Vietnam, but it was another year before he saw real action. After an artillery commander was killed, Scales was his replacement prior to the Battle of Hamburger Hill. He was awarded the Silver Star for his actions on June 14, 1969, when nearly a hundred North Vietnamese overran his base in a predawn assault. Despite explosions all around him, he rotated among his artillery units, firing at the enemy, helping his men, and radioing instructions to helicopter gunships.
Beginning in 1982, he was a field artillery battalion commander in Korea.
Scales was named director of the Desert Storm Special Study Group in 1991, and authored the book, Certain Victory, the Army’s official account of the first Persian Gulf War. The book was published in 1994, the first of seven he has written.
In 1995 he became deputy chief of staff for the Army Training and Doctrine Command, developing a blueprint for designing future military forces.
The high point of his career was his appointment as commandant of the U.S. Army War College in 1997.
Major General Scales retired in November, 2000 after 34 years of Army service. He continued to write and accept speaking engagements after leaving active duty and was named Fleet Admiral Chester W. Nimitz Lecturer at the University of California, Berkeley, in 2004. and serves as a commentator for both NPR and Fox News. His writing has appeared in Time Magazine.
Major U.S. Decorations and Badges
- Distinguished Service Medal
- Silver Star
- Legion of Merit (with 4 Oak Leaf Clusters)
- Bronze Star
- Meritorious Service Medal (with 4 Oak Leaf Clusters)
- Air Medal
- Certain Victory: The U.S. Army in the Gulf War ISBN 0-02-881111-9, Potomac Books, 1994
- Firepower in Limited War ISBN 0-89141-650-1, Balantine Books, 1998
- America's Army in Transition: Preparing for War in the Precision Age US Army War College, 1999
- Future Warfare: Anthology ISBN 1-58487-026-5, US Army War College, 2000
- The Iraq War: A Military History ISBN 0-674-01280-1, Belknap Press, 2003
- Yellow Smoke: The Future of Land Warfare for America's Military ISBN 0-7425-1773-X, Rowman & Littlefield, 2003
- Lessons from the Iraq War ISBN 0-87772-416-4, Berkeley Public Policy Press, 2004
- "Military Strategy and the Future of Land Warfare" UC Berkely Institute of International Studies, Conversations with History: Major General Robert H. Scales, Jr.
- Richter, Paul: "Veterans Now Guiding Troops Impart Painful Lessons" Los Angeles Times, April 10, 2000
- "Major General Robert H. Scales" Strategic Studies Institute, United States Army War College
- Scales, Robert: "Edward Uhl" Time Magazine, May 31, 2010
- Strategic Studies Institute Staff Bio