Segment 2


Baum recalls that Jewish men did not receive the recognition that the other soldiers did. It was not as bad for the Jewish officers, it was worse for the enlisted men. In his unit 11 out of 42 men were Jewish. The Battalion Commander was a successful businessman from Alabama. He chose Jewish officers because of his experience with Jewish businessmen. They were the best armored infantry in the division. The morale was very strong in their division. When Patton wanted to promote a General, he sent them to the 4th Armored Division for 3 weeks to see how divisions should function. Baum was anxious to get overseas and fight. The 4th Armored Division arrived in Normandy in July of 1944 and went straight into combat. During their first time in combat, Baum's battalion lost 2 commanders and took a bad beating from the hedgerows. Baum was in the hedgerows during his 1st experience of combat. He was thinking about the troops, not about himself. An officer can't afford that luxury. He recalls the Battle of Troyes [Annotator's Note: late August 1944] and his participation in that. He said it was 1 of the best schooled armored force attacks in history. It was a massive attack, instead of the usual narrow attack. It goes down in history as one of the most magnificent battles. They teach that type of warfare in the Army today. He was awarded the Bronze Star for his actions. He was the Assistant S-2 [Annotator's Note: Assistant military intelligence officer] at the time.


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