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Uploaded on Sep 2, 2008
Schwarzkopf was born Herbert Norman Schwarzkopf Jr,in Trenton,New Jersey to Herbert Norman Schwarzkopf,then the Superintendent of the New Jersey State Police.The family resided in Lawrenceville,New Jersey.In January1952 his birth certificate was amended to make his name"H. Norman Schwarzkopf".His connection with the Persian Gulf region began very early on.In 1946,when he was 12,he and the rest of his family joined their father,stationed in Tehran,Iran,where his father would go on to be instrumental in Operation Ajax.He attended the Community High School in Tehran,later the International School of Geneva,and attended and graduated from Valley Forge Military Academy.He is also a member of Mensa.After attending Valley Forge Military Academy,Schwarzkopf,an army brat,attended the United States Military Academy,where he graduated 43rd in his class in 1956with a Bachelor of Science Degree.He also attended the University of Southern California,where he received a Master's degree in mechanical engineering in 1964.His special field of study was guided missile engineering, a program that USC developed with the Army, which incorporated equally both aeronautical and mechanical engineering.Upon graduating from West Point he was commissioned a Second Lieutenant.He received advanced infantry and airborne training at Fort Benning,Georgia after graduating from West Point.He was a platoon leader and served as executive officer of the 2nd Airborne Battle Group, 187th Airborne Infantry Regiment at Fort Campbell, Kentucky.Next he was aide-de-camp to the Berlin Brigade in 1960and1961,a crucial time in the history of that divided city(the Berlin Wall was erected by East German and Soviet forces only a week after he left).In 1965,after completing his masters degree at USC,Schwarzkopf served at West Point as an instructor in the mechanical engineering department. In 1988,he was promoted to General and was appointed Commander-in-Chief of the U.S.Central Command.The US Central Command,based at MacDill Air Force Base,near Tampa,Florida,is responsible for operations in the Horn of Africa,the Middle East and South Asia(Operations for the Horn of Africa will fall under the new Africa Command by fall 2008).In his capacity as commander,Schwarzkopf prepared a detailed plan for the defense of the oil fields of the Persian Gulf against a hypothetical invasion by Iraq,among other plans.The Iraq plan served as the basis of the USCENTCOM wargame of 1990.Within the same month,Iraq invaded Kuwait,and Schwarzkopf's plan had an immediate practical application,which was as the basis for Operation Desert Shield,the defense of Saudi Arabia.A few months later,his offensive operational plan,called Operation Desert Storm was the"left hook"strategy that went into Iraq behind the Iraqi forces occupying Kuwait and was widely credited with bringing the ground war to a close in just four days.He was personally very visible in the conduct of the war,giving frequent press conferences,and was dubbed"Stormin'Norman."After the war,Schwarzkopf was bestowed an honorary corporal in the French Foreign Legion,the first and only American to be so honored.