employed with full effect against the enemy. It was only a matter of hours since the 7th Armored had been driven from St. Vith, and the officers, men, and vehicles of most of its units were spread about helter-skelter from village to village just as they had arrived back in the American lines after the disorganization attendant on the withdrawal across the Salm. The problem of combat morale is more difficult for the historian, writing long after the event, to analyze. Hasbrouck's division had made a fight of it at St. Vith, more than meriting the eulogy of Field Marshal Montgomery's retreat order, "They come back in all honor"; but it was too much to expect of human flesh and blood, mind and heart, that the 7th Armored should continue, only hours after the retreat, to demonstrate the same high order of combat efficiency seen in the defense of St. Vith.
General Hasbrouck had no plans for retaking Manhay on the morning of the 26th; he counted rather on a few hours to regroup his command. But about 0900 General Collins called from the VII Corps to ask that Ridgway put the 7th Armored into an attack at Manhay as an assist for the 3d Armored drive against the twin village of Grandmenil.