Thursday, October 16, 2008
Macarthurs War: Korea and the Undoing of an American Hero by Stanley Weintraub covers the first 11 months of the Korean War when General Douglas MacArthur was in command. Weintraub a lieutenant during the conflict paints McArthur as a schemer always looking for ways to expand his power at the expense of the Pentagon and the White House. There are intriguing parallels between MacArthurs failure at the beginning of World War II and at the outbreak of Korea. He seemed unable to grasp rapidly changing events. Weintraub complements McArthur for his grasp of military history and leadership but considers him a failure in the wider political sphere. For instance MacArthurs inability to understand that using the Nationalist Chinese would be a politically disastrous mistake. There is extensive research from archival and secondary sources.