While I sympathise with the "Monty was an insufferable, egotistical ass" POV (which was quite widespread in the British Army as well
), that doesn't provide a good military excuse for not seeing him face to face and thrashing out exactly what was, and more importantly what wasn't, logistically possible for the Allies in Sep 44.
When Eisenhower and SHAEF received Montgomery's infamous "Berlin" signal of 4 Sep, they replied on 5 Sep: "While agreeing with your conception of a powerful and full-blooded thrust towards Berlin, I do not agree that it should be initiated at this moment to the exclusion of all other manoeuver. The bulk of the German Army that was in the West has now been destroyed. We must immediately exploit our success by promptly breaching the Siegfried Line, crossing the Rhine on a wide front, and seizing the SAAR and RUHR."
So was this an order to Montgomery to "immediately
cross the Rhine and seize the RUHR? Did Montgomery have the logistics to do that? Did he have the forces required on his front? How much better would it have been for someone from SHAEF, if not Eisenhower then his Deputy or his Chief of Staff, to follow this up with a personal visit to make sure that this could be done with the resources on hand. BTW I don't see any evidence to say that Eisenhower thought that there was a large German reserve anywhere to worry about, rather the opposite in fact.
I think the war in Europe would of gone better if Monty was in Burma
. Perhaps, but shouldn't that really be in the "What if?" section.
I'd love to see your reasoning for this thought...
There is quite a bit of evidence to suggest that it was Montgomery's ruthless drive (call it military ambition, call it egotism, call it "making sure you are so strong that you are bound to win", call it "caution", call it what you like...) that enabled the COSSAC plan for the invasion of Normandy to be so quickly amended, despite opposition, despite the delay to ANVIL, despite the need for greater air and naval forces - many saw that the initial plan was too weak, not many had the prestige to drive through the requisite changes.
Montgomery made mistakes, who doesn't; Montgomery upset people, who doesn't! Anglo-American tensions wouldn't have disappeared overnight if Montgomery had disappeared to Burma (BLA - Burma Looms Ahead
) - cf the campaign in Italy, the campaign in the Far East, the pubs of Soho! Fortunately, the tensions were managed in all these theatres (not without alot of grinding and knashing of teeth, 'tis true). Unfortunately, just as today, what goes wrong makes better press than what goes right - imagine if all the general's wrote memoirs saying how much they admired their peers, how dull!!
Anyway, I'm back to looking for pictures of Eisenhower looking in pain in Paris on 8 Sep