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MacArthur -- And Thanks For The Asking!
At 01:40 AM 12/20/02 EST, ChosinMead@aol.com wrote:
>I am one of the people who do not admire Mac. I believe he was an self
serving ego maniac. His ever action was intended to enhance his image.
Consider his statement regarding the Phillipines, "I shall return"- not WE
shall return. Or at Inchon, "We will land at Inchon and 'I' will crush
them!"His actions at the Bonus March was not the action of leader. He
screwed up the defense of the Phillipines, and didn't even have the courage
to stay and be present at the surrender- Does anyone really believe that
Roosevelt ordered him out?
How great was he at Inchon? Anyone can come up with an idea and then tell
someone else to implement it. Chosin was his greatest failure, his refusal
to accept the intelligence given him was responsible for the lives of
thousands of men.
Wow! What a plethora of mistakes and failed reasoning there are here!
To respond to the off-topic ones:
"I shall return" was the perfect public pronouncement for the Philippines
in that era. The Philippines loved the term and still honor MacArthur for
saying it. (In the Philippine Army to this day, at roll call, the final
name called is always, "Douglas MacArthur", and the junior man present
stands forth and answers, "here in spirit!".) The phrase was directed to
speak to the Philippine nationals and it did just that.
MacArthur was not at his best in the defense of the Philippines but, once
he ordered the switch from RAINBOW back to ORANGE, his withdrawal was
masterful and, in places, brilliant. He had fine subordinates and a
well-honed staff, and used them with precision and skill. His own spirit
was driven down by the lies of Roosevelt and Marshall but, in the end, he
pulled out of this slump to become the most successful US General of the
Second World War.
Yes, Roosevelt ordered MacArthur out, at the urging of Churchill and
Marshall. MacArthur was shocked at the receipt of the orders and wanted to
resign his commission and go to Bataan as a civilian volunteer. He was
dissuaded from this by his staff, especially RADM Rockwell, the Naval
District Commander. This is all too well documented to require discussion.
I am not certain what your comments on the Bonus Marchers mean or are meant
to mean. MacArthur was given orders, orders intensely distasteful to him,
and carried them out as well as could anyone in his position. He took
personal responsibility to shield his subordinates from any blame which
resulted. (Note that the men who gave him his orders, Herbert Hoover and
Pat Hurley, remained warm and close friends until MacArthur's death.)
Yes, he took personal credit for CHROMITE but, then, why not? He conceived
it, over the objections of his own staff. He got Washington to approve it,
despite the objections of the Joint Chiefs of Staff -- he even had to
remind the Chief of Naval Operations that, "the Navy has NEVER let this
nation down, and they shall not do so here!" The ONLY support he had for
CHROMITE was from the Marines, who understood the brilliance of the
conception and who demanded to be included. And it succeeded, brilliantly.
We give Edison credit for the light bulb and Lee the credit for winning
Chancellorsville -- why not grant MacArthur the credit for conceiving,
developing, and conducting CHROMITE?
The withdrawal from the Yalu -- which involved a LOT more folks than just
the Marines, Army, and British at Choisin! -- was not anticipated either by
MacArthur or by his staff. But, then, they had been told, for months and
months and months, that there was not the slightest chance of CHICOM
intervention. They had been told this by Beedle Smith's CIA, by Dean
Acheson's State Department, and by George Marshall's Department of Defense.
Not a single soul in DC bothered to tell anyone in FEC, including
MacArthur, of the warnings being given the US by the Indians and other
nations -- for that matter, very little of the relevant intelligence was
ever shared with FEC, thanks to Beedle Smith's insistence that the CIA do
all of the intel analysis. (Smith never took the fall for this but it is
most interesting to note that his former boss, Eisenhower, refused to keep
him on in ANY role in his administration.)
And thanks for walking the General across the street. He was getting a bit
doddery by then.
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