EISENHOWER, Dwight D. Document signed ("Dwight D. Eisenhower") as Army Chief of Staff, AN EFFICIENCY REPORT FOR GENERAL OMAR BRADLEY, 6 February 1948. 3 pages, 4to, remnants of mounting along edge.
"HE IS FORCEFUL, BUT IS HUMAN, UNDERSTANDING - A REAL LEADER"
IKE FORMALLY EVALUATES HIS SUCCESSOR AS ARMY CHIEF OF STAFF. An outgoing officer has to rate his incoming successor, even if the two men in question are the most famous officers in the entire service, and the job is Chief of Staff. But that's just what Eisenhower does for Omar N. Bradley (1893-1981) on this standard, government issue form. Ike dispenses entirely with the "Job Proficiency" section, declining to say whether Bradley "Always criticizes, never praises," or "uses a steady monotone in his speech." He gets right to the point in the box titled "Description of Officer Rated and Comments": "Much of my opinion of this officer is based upon wartime contacts, but I am acquainted with results of his work in the period of this report," which was 1 July 1947 to 6 February 1948, when Bradley served in the important but (to him) dull post of Administrator of Veterans Affairs. "So far as I am concerned," Eisenhower continues, "General Bradley comes close to exemplifying the standards by which all senior officers of the Army should be judged. A brilliant tactician, he is equally competent in fields involving high strategy and broad administrative ability. He is unselfish, devoted to duty and of unimpeachable mental honesty. He is forceful, but is human, understanding--a real leader."
Bradley and Eisenhower knew each other since their days at West Point where Bradley graduated 15 places higher than Ike in the 1915 class. Indeed, Eisenhower entered his first "evaluation" of Bradley in the class yearbook: Bradley's "most promising characteristic," he wrote, "is 'getting there,' and if he keeps up the clip he's started, some of us will some day be bragging to our grandchildren that, 'Sure, General Bradley was a classmate of mine'" (American National Biography).