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tv   The General vs. the President  CSPAN  December 22, 2016 12:19am-1:27am EST

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perception among the american amonthe am people. they thought he was a great hero, a person that won the war and in fact your comment continues its strength i sort of absurd. i haven't met or heard of somebody that serves under macarthur who could stand him at all. because in the philippines theyy never came out of call him thed he abandoned his troops in the philippines and if they were left to suffer while he went off
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to australia and got a medal of honor. so it is a statement that macarthur was able to projectree people.ze him then there was the broaderublic public that that you only through the press releases that he gave.e.opera's leases he was good at managing theng press. but those people that had to follow his order. of the things that happen and and that the counterfactual thae the counterfactual that might have happened seems to be truman at least had to be blamed for as lot of what macarthur did or caused and macarthur gets credit for a lot of things that might have happened had he got in his way, so it's difficult to go
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so i difficu back and say we know exactly how the dominoes would have fallen.tten his w >> when you're president, you suffer from responsibility. as you make decisions and things happen and people can judge you. this is like macarthur who wasn't responsible for the to is not lobal policy and he could say as he did during the korean warwe need to take on cho win the award. world war three had actually begun rose 42 was against fascism world war iii was dealing with communism macarthur to it the position war had begun in war there is no substitute for victory but truman knew that some
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nuclear war is a possibility there is a substitute and that is survival. so macarthur went to his grave to say if i could have gone after china, we would have won world war two and he could say the soviet union would not have dared to enter the war this is the position he took public and why he got fired because united states did not fall out against china's truman thought he was wrong but if he had done this bill they could prove me wrong. that you really had to prove them wrong just to entertain the thought.
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>>. >> to believe the same way macarthur did that it was actually a getting out of hand. >> patton said they shed pat the soviet union. and this was a the mindset to call the of the of battlefield general but he did have the attitude that was widely shared at the time because it american
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history the all out war that a fence with that unconditional surrender of the anomaly but after aboard old war two because this was the signature aboard -- war we were attacked we go all out we will end and come home that is that. also what he was dealing with andrea because americans are very frustrated with the ability to win the war against the clearly inferior. that was the rift between the two. the second part of that with the box tops with harry truman that gets back to the responsibility.
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macarthur could be paid irresponsibly because the burden is not on them to be around the world he had the commanders notion everything is all had where he was and truman would think of the whole world. >> what we appreciate today about harry truman he had to make of what of tough decisions but yet we see them waffle on the question of the 304th parallel is
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anything about the subject matter that would cause us to from question our celebration of harry truman? >> celebrating and is farther than igo in the book but i don't think they give them more than his due but he would extend pariahs in correa he did not have the marshall plan in mind he works his way through things so in dealing with korea and macarthur it's determined by surprise and the communist that the united states those with the wind to the defense
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of south korea because it declared it was not part of the national security zone it was not important to the united states so when they pulled their troops out they had no idea they would send the troops back in but what happened the communists won the chinese civil war ended changed everything because now for their aboard the north atlantic treaty was barely one year old and the north atlantic treaty changed everything for the united states because the first time since the 18th century they recommended to a peacetime alliance that we
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will go to the defense of the allied and it was on the of line in korea so they needed to respond initially this was a defensive maneuver with the soviet delegate not being present at the time of war broke god was possible to beat under the united asians to say that south korea of would be liberated invade north korea but when macarthur engineered the brilliant cut and dry and too near the capture the entire north korean harvey chairman m.
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macarthur got greedy. why stop at the 38 parallel? we can clear them all out of korea it was a lull little bit harder to capture those forces have brought them up close with there was serious interpretation so mcarthur
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sense the trips that begins the border if troops get close to enter the war but macarthur did not believe it. so from 14,000 miles away he did have the good grace to fly to washington to brief the president he would not even go halfway. he said this is as far as i could go but truman would humor him because macarthur would tell him the war is almost over sochi and had strong suspicion of his willingness to obey the orders and is important to bear in mind douglas macarthur clearly out ranked truman but is true that truman was president and commander in chief but he
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had risen to the ranks of capt. macarthur was of five-star general. so mcarthur is saying the chinese will never dare to enter the war if they do we will annihilate them so one month later it does enter if anybody gets annihilated it is america so when he proceeds to say go all-out if they do they will never enter from the soviet. >> would do believe to compare donald trump. [laughter] >> the first thing i would say is for him to announce
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his favorite general because especially when they are fighting the war it is like the war in korea has military force is the reasons to bring that to to frustration we are the great military power we cannot defeat a bunch of ragtag terrorist so for truman to say we need more generals is natural he would not have is general giving interviews then you do not know
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macarthur. [laughter] because he gave interview after interview that was his whole problem and why he got interviewed and actually that there is the impression that surrounds truman decision to fire macarthur no question he did have a temper but he did not fire him because he was mad or insubordination copies tactically he did not fire inviolate borders he was deliberately creating confusion want to american policy and with the president of united states say we're trying to keep this contained then the commander says we need to
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expand anwr against china he decided he did not want the war -- the world confused. moret than anyone else because harry truman still holds a unique distinction the only person in history ever ordered the use of atomic weapons of the postwar interviews he thought about using the of bomb against japan but afterwards did not hickey in the second saw. i am not sure that i believe that and if i do, that is a
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huge decision i'd like to think he had a few sleepless nights that he was sensitive to the possibility where rolled 42 ended rolled or three would begin with that chronological coincidence that just months before the war in korea began they had there first atom bomb 45 through the blockade and the crisis there would not have to be worried about using nuclear-weapons against the united states then they would be on the receiving end of the soviets.
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>> is seems that the korean war and truman have more control as opposed to these unconditional surrender. is a with the eighth samples of the limited war? >> share. it was a limited war the war with mexico in the 1840's some people said they used to take all of mexico the war in spain but the
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unconditional surrender aspect was a little over a drawn to say it was not a political decision to utterly destroy a the not c. ritchie because world war i ended with the cease-fire and the german government still remains but it was not defeated by the allied forces would and the reason was to prevent what happened when they said we did not lose that where we word be trade by the jews and that is why he was willing to take on the jews that we would fight and destroyed but that was the glue that held them together but i
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would add the war in the pacific does not end in conditional surrender and that was a huge deal that americans word sufficiently leary of war but also realized it was small potatoes compared to germany. there was a lot of anger if the war in europe pet ended to say that never would have flown but that is what happens because americans during the war were led to believe they were behind all of this but the reason was the of leadership recognized
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after word said is handy to have the emperor there because they will help macarthur govern defeat sunday a idea that they fight the war all ought but it was applied primarily to the war in europe and so these are standard in warfare that this not happen most of the time. >> i'll want to move into a the aftermath when you make eloquent statement to the end that there were good
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reasons to do that is interesting that to macarthur ends up discrediting himself. after he comes back to a hero's welcome to testify before the committee then they talk to other people in the administration and get a very different picture of what happened in a rare much more sympathetic to truman although that was never made public and remains sealed. the people who heard the testimony did not recant in public but they would no longer look to macarthur with that strategy or politics they woody's away
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from the general but then they never said why. think that is intriguing. >> and this is what led me back to the story i will ask the question how many of you remember that macarthur got fired? i was born 1953 silent about in school by literally came across it was in fact, doing research at the truman library but some part did not add up and makes sense had to do with the fact that macarthur gets fired most of
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the people blame harry truman to be stupid back then macarthur comes home to a hero's welcome to a ticker-tape parade gives a command performance and of the joint session of congress and the stays and you can punch up the speech to congress it is fantastic a big have never seen a political speech he got people to cheer and to cry wolf soldiers never die they just fade away so if intact at the republican nominating convention he would renominated right there.
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so then shortly after that to the joint committee meeting to tell them what they got wrong. so for three days against the speech friday were right or wrong. and vandenberg the chief of staff, most as the american public thought uh testimony was over one because every day they read in the and newspaper page after page in tranten full pages so the
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american people were buried in this testimony. they were closed hearings but 99.8% open because there word transcripts released the next day said they were following along, and they that they had been there. but the part that they had not heard that was a mystery to him bb coz i hear this part that macarthur comes home and people suspected macarthur plight truman out because they wanted him to get fired to come home to run for president clearly he was planning to run for president although truman made the mistake to fire him. he is really popular and
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again there is a town in texas they were in much more favor of macarthur one so launches promisingly and give speeches around uh country and just flashes into truman all of while with his five stars he has a sense not to say anything in response so what they did not realize that he held himself the nobody knew it. so i could not figure out why the air would leak out the way that it did.
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so his campaign did not go anywhere. so it turns out to 99.8% of the testimony these were close terris said moments when george marshall led say to the person transcribing, this cannot be released so what he said was basically chapter and verse five mart one negative macarthur's approach was wrong headed but when macarthur would complain to have to fight the chinese with one hand behind his back and working to the benefit of the chinese will marshal and omar bradley says he has it wrong that he
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is working to our benefit the reason that handicapped private was marshall wobble and bradley did not want to advertise the brcs stretched as then as could be an vanderberg says pretty much every spare played is fighting in correa so this is an invitation to the soviets you want to move on berlin? go-ahead. why we could not figure out what happened to his political balloon. he and never found out why. so the rest of the testimony was released. so with was better monte's
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committees the wind who would run for president to say if he had done what he wanted to do they was walkaway at macarthur really did never find out what happened. so there was another judge girlhood -- another general decided to put his hat into the ring. [laughter] this is macarthur had run for president in the age of washington to present yourself as being better he may have had a chance but in the '50s he also had to be responsible. >>.
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>> with the valuations by bradley to expand the war was that the primary decisions? or was that made independently put. >> truman is very good listening to his divisor's with george marshall and dean acheson. from the joint chiefs and and they all understood. that was why when macarthur promised before they entered the war to say i will have the troops home by christmas they would go back to where they word needed sowed
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germany was relatively >> . n >> one and cut thinkingy di was to spark in the united states so bradley and marshall and truman somehow world war #r three could bentil postponed until 1,953. n one that the soviets would think that they had any advantage
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and they did they had emigratedreem advantage but they were deeper into the war in asia one but he never admitted he was wrong but the way he put it was macarthur's credibility was not particularly great. n >> and bad my dad is in the national guard and the
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general to same like truman was rehabilitated and truman becomes the great man. n >> because he has the presidential library n [laughter]man n. n >> but i
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will say that where theyndic really did vindicate harry truman with american history beforest u or since the approval rating was lowered the that of nixon and if under the constitution he could haveuld free and even democrats wanted him to get out of town. n his popularity remains very low that is nothing that we want to do.epea n it was a more compellingruma
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figure but the curious story is repeated in vietnam's. n but by 1,968 johnson would have given his right arm but but it wasn't more than decade that it began to soar. n may have to defeatunism -- defeat communism that isread
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what the containment is all and about so this is much unsaidd what happened that was wise and farsighted but truman was ranked right down there with warren harding at the bottom listof t of presidents in the top 546. n but he is up there with truman i cannot
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help but thinking that is not looking so good but it will vindicate george w.ge w bush n [inaudible] n so with
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the aspect of foreign policy because at that time through the '80s both political parties there were liberal republicans and conservative democrats so it was entirely possible or even a bipartisan foreign policy. n to engage in those novelojec projects like the of marshall plan to have
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leading republicans come on board it was a lot harder to do that today but the parties have changed.ld s n 11 johnson really nailed the math of the party but what johnson did was began sifting down the political parties. n the conservative white southern democrats are more conservative so they slowly gravitated so while they move to the republican party so that today we have
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a situation those conservative democrats. n with that important initiative.e.bi n it would be very hard and as of matter of personality. n >> but i was born in nonmilitary hospital. n harry to
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resemble president forn po policy shed to change america's foreign policy also domestically as well but he doesn't get as much credit for that. so truman tried to get congress to write legislation in the 40's with favor not willing to go there he wasn't getting much from his own party because the republicans wasn't going to give him a victory on anything with an election coming up was assumed the republicans would win so
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with american politics those grievances just add up eventually they say he is in power long enough will put in a republican so they would not give him any success on civil-rights and the democrats wouldn't either so he wanted civil-rights legislation decided to take executive action and ordered the military to desegregate the then he discovered what he becaustruman dideisenhower >> the. >> case said that i stepasid aside general if he willrun. run.in he wa betty was uncomfortable being president.. so by the time eisenhower the tr
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was elected he said borerdoesn't eisenhower doesn't know what he is getting into. he thinks politics is like the army. but if you say do this sorte do that because true then e gave the order for the but thry. because of the position that bureaucrats tend to realize that they come and go. so a number of reasons to drag their feet. so when the korean war began its the military was as as segregated as ever.
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bonn but when american forces and the general discovered to be in the foxholes with the white soldiers. >> it was partly truman's ader the face with thetrum but reality and destiny of theity korean war. so johnson gets most of the credit.
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and partly the wasn't just a full-blown southerner to beck pn of black person in the south >> as a love that comment of the administration we have a phone call of the tremendous calling on christmas morning of all the of legislation to say only half of those items began with us.
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and very much appreciatedreciate the groundwork. so they sat on this very stage to the truman libraryo had thene honored him in that way? t >> [inaudible]
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>> with a prisoner of warorget r camp. through dna so they could be put to rest with all of those forces. >> we need to wrap up so rami does it all mean?
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with the supremacy in we have done a great job of that and the story is for what policy can be.f ovt truman was not likee that.al so true and demonstrated but
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there was a nature of leadership that toleratedalleng. a longhur for a long time. with that constitutional aspect it is crucial.we'll ca originally was a nobody with the most celebrated and decorated of theireb generation has never been a serious challenge and it is taken as a matter of course, but there are smallhingn aspects to the story for a story that show humanity also the understanding of the last 18
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months in tremendous cited macar that he needs with the secretary of war this and is they got wind that macarthur the heard about this. got to be formally released.want to
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so truman was the case andisors his advisor san said tonightguyi the world will know as to president of the united states know to marco they canie find outs if it is on the device of everybody else. [applause] [appla >> as a celebrated author and historian you don't have
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to take our word for it sotake go out to buy your very own can copy thank you for being here.. [applause]
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>> a professor of constitutional history the underpinnings of america is a bureaucratic state the united states is ruled by the establishment this is the fourth branch of government and that is of constitutional problem.

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