And President Truman has been proven wrong.
The great and honorable legacy of President Truman is the United States being the first nation to officially recognize the re-establishment of the State of Israel.
But with regard to his handling of the illegal Chinese military involvement and attack against U.S. and allied troops in Korea, Truman was flat out wrong.
The following is from the fourth chapter entiltled "Korea" in the book written by General Douglas MacArthur- "Revitalizing A Nation":
["While I was not consulted prior to the President's decision to intervene in support of the Republic of Korea, that decision, from a military standpoint, proved a sound one, as we hurled back the invader and decimated his forces.
We defeated the Northern Korean armies. Our victory was complete and our objectives within reach when Red China intervened with numerically superior ground forces.
This created a new war and an entirely new situation--a situation not contemplated when our forces were committed against the North Korean invaders--a situation which called for new decisions in the diplomatic sphere to permit the realistic adjustment of military strategy.
While no man in his right mind would advocate sending our ground forces into continental China and such was never given a thought, the new situation did urgently demand a drastic revision of strategic planning if our political aim was to defeat this new enemy as we had defeated the old."]
"...the new situation did urgently demand a drastic revision of strategic planning if our political aim was to defeat this new enemy as we had defeated the old."
MacArthur's proposed "drastic revision of strategic planning":
["Apart from the military need as I saw it to neutralize the sanctuary protection given the enemy north of the Yalu, I felt that military necessity in the conduct of the war made mandatory--
- The intensification of our economic blockade against China;
- The imposition of a naval blockade against the China coast;
- Removal of restrictions on air reconnaissance of China's coastal areas and of Manchuria;
- Removal of restrictions on the forces of the Republic of China on Formosa [Taiwan] with logictical support to contribute to their effective operations against the common enemy.
For entertaining these views, all professionally designed to support our forces committed to Korea and bring hostilities to an end with the least possible delay, and at a saving of countless American and Allied lives, I have been severely criticized in lay circles, principally abroad, despite my understanding that from a military standpoint the above views have been fully shared in past by practically every military leader concerned with the Korean campaign, including our own Joint Chiefs of Staff."]
"For entertaining these views,...I have been severely criticized..."
How Washington responded to MacArthur's proposed new strategy to deal with a drastic situation:
["I called for reinforcements, but was informed reinforcements were not available.I made clear that if not permitted to destroy the enemy build-up north of the Yalu; if not permitted to utilized the friendly Chinese forces of some 600,000 men on Formosa; if not permitted to blockade the China coast to prevent the Chinese Reds from getting succor from without; and if there were to be no hope of major reinforcements, the position of the command from the military standpoint forbade victory."]
["The tradgedy is that since the advent of the war with Red China there has been no definition of the political policy which would provide a solution for the new problems thereby created.
This has resulted in a policy vacum hertofore unknown to war"]
Concerning the criticism from Truman that Big Mac's proposed new revised strategy would result in WWIII involving the Soviet Union, MacArthur wrote:
["The reason given for such a course has little validity. It has been argued in justification and seemingly to soothe the public concern that the application of conventional war measures against our enemy might provoke the Soviet into launching the Third World War,
Yet, since the end of the Second World War, without committing a single soldier to battle, the Soviet, aided by our own political blunders, has gained a dominion over territory and peoples without parallel in all of history--a dominion which it will take years for it to assimilate and administer.
What then would be its purpose in provoking a war of most doubtful result to the Communist cause? I have strong doubt that the start of a major war anywhere enters the Soviet plans at this stage"]
And here's the kicker:
["There are some who for varying reasons would appease Red China.
They are blind to history's clear lesson. For history teaches with unmistakable emphasis that appeasement but begets new and bloodier war.
It points to no single instance where the end has justified the means--where appeasement has led us to more than a sham peace. Like blackmail, it lays the basis for new and sucessively greater demands, until, as in blackmail, violence beomes the only alternative.
"...it lays the basis for new and sucessively greater demands,...like blackmail..."
["All men of good conscience earnestly seek peace. The method alone is in issue. Some, with me, would acheive peace through a prompt and decisive victory at a saving of human life., others through appeasement and compromise of moral principal, with less regard for human life.
The one course follows our great American tradition, the other but can lead to unending slaughter and our country's moral debasement."]