President Theodore Roosevelt on the Man in the Arena



Citizenship in a Republic is the title of a speech given by the former President of the United States, Theodore Roosevelt, at the Sorbonne in Paris, France on April 23, 1910

It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.



Welcome to Reports From in the Arena! I hope you will find the content both readable and informative. I invite comment.


I’m Bill Chamberlain and I’m an Infantry Colonel. I spent four years at the Military Academy and thirty years in the Infantry. I commanded from the rifle platoon through the brigade level of command. I am a Desert Storm veteran and commanded 1st Battalion 18th Infantry Regiment during that conflict.  My purpose with this blog is to share lessons learned over those thirty-four years “in the arena” on the subjects of Command, Leadership. Tactics and the Army in general. I will do so with a series of stories, all true, that I experienced as I went along in the Army. Each will have a learning or teaching points at the end and I invite comment.


A Farewell to “Thumbscrew 6”, aka President George H. W. Bush, our Beloved Commander in Desert Storm

From the 1966 edition of the Standard College Dictionary: thumb-screw; an instrument of torture for compressing the thumb or thumbs. President and Mrs. Bush came to Saudi Arabia to spend Thanksgiving 1990 with the troops. Unfortunately, my battalion was not chosen to host them. A very dapper brigadier who was the 18th Airborne Corps chief …


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