The Big Red One

Since the First World War erupted in 1917, one U.S. Army division has been on activation longest, ready to defend the United States and its freedoms. Known as The Big Red One — from its distinct arm patch – the First Infantry Division has fought in all major American military campaigns of the last 80 years. In this gripping episode of “War Stories with Oliver North,” you’ll go inside the battlefields of World War I all the way through Operation Iraqi Freedom with those who proudly served in the Big Red One.

You’ll hear from veterans who suffered mustard gas attacks in the trenches of Europe. This was the U.S. Army’s brutal initiation into 20th Century warfare. You’ll go along with the Division as it returns to Europe 27 years later to take on Hitler’s elite Panzer Divisions. In that epic struggle, the fighting First Division took part in three amphibious invasions and five major land battles. Barely 20 years later, in the jungles of Vietnam, The Big Red One continued the fight against Communist insurgents. And during 1991’s “Operation Desert Storm,” the First Division was chosen to breach Saddam Hussein’s defenses and take on the dictator’s well-trained Republican Guard in the fight to liberate Kuwait.

In this episode, you’ll also learn the story of General Terry Allen, the little known, but beloved commander of The Big Red One during its first battles with Hitler’s legions. From his granddaughter, you’ll hear the inside story of the controversy surrounding General Allen, and the sacrifice made by his namesake son a generation later in Vietnam.

The story of The Big Red One is the history of soldiers in the United States Army. And, in the words of First Infantry Division veterans: “They always say, if you’re going to be one, you got to be a Big Red One!”