President Truman asserts his C. in C. role and forevermore US Politicos would trump Military knowhow

In the summer of 1950 North Koreans forces attacked across the DMZ at the 38th parallel and handily beat the entrenched South Korean army as they advanced to the northern edge of Seoul.

UN forces under the overall command of General Douglas McArthur were sent in and stopped the North Korean invaders.

As U.S. and United Nations forces turned the tide of battle, MacArthur argued for a policy of pushing into North Korea to completely defeat the retreating communist forces. President Harry S Truman agreed but worried that China might take the invasion as a hostile act within its sphere of influence.

In October 1950, MacArthur met with Truman and assured him that it was the chances of Chinese intervention were slim. But then, in November and December 1950, hundreds of thousands of Chinese troops crossed into North Korea and flung themselves against the American lines, driving the U.S. troops back into South Korea.

MacArthur then asked for permission to bomb communist China and use Nationalist Chinese forces from Taiwan, with the idea of pushing the Chinese/North Koreans force back to the Yalu River which divided China from North Korea.

Truman flatly refused these requests and a very public argument began to develop between the two men. Despite North Korea’s initial hostile invasion, Truman did not want to create a toe to toe confrontation with China, and possibly Russia, which shared a 300 miles contiguous border with North Korea.

MacArthur, who had beat the Japanese military and then oversaw that country’s reconstruction as a democratic republic… who had been protecting American interests in Asia most of his adult life… claimed he knew the physic of the forces he now had on the run and that the only sure course for the US was to kick their communist asses good to stop their regional expansion.

He promised Truman he could do it. Truman said he wanted MacArthur to stop at the 38th parallel to create North Korea as a buffer against China and Russia.

An arrogant MacArthur replied something along the lines of… No, I know best here.

Truman said you’re fired.

On April 11, Truman addressed the nation and explained his actions. He began by defending his overall policy in Korea, declaring, “It is right for us to be in Korea.” He excoriated the “communists in the Kremlin [who] are engaged in a monstrous conspiracy to stamp out freedom all over the world.” Nevertheless, he explained, it “would be wrong—tragically wrong—for us to take the initiative in extending the war… Our aim is to avoid the spread of the conflict.”

The president continued, “I believe that we must try to limit the war to Korea for these vital reasons: To make sure that the precious lives of our fighting men are not wasted; to see that the security of our country and the free world is not needlessly jeopardized; and to prevent a third world war.” General MacArthur had been fired “so that there would be no doubt or confusion as to the real purpose and aim of our policy.”

MacArthur , unbowed, returned home. Americans revered him as the mastermind of the victorious Pacific campaign in World War II and a quarter million people filled the National Mall and the route from the Washington Monument to the Capitol, to cheer the war hero on 19 April 1951 when he addressed a joint session of congress.

What follows are his opening remarks and the last half of his speech. I have underlined some parts. Please note his predictions if China was not punished for supporting North Korea aggression.

“Mr. President, Mr. Speaker, and Distinguished Members of the Congress: I stand on this rostrum with a sense of deep humility and great pride — humility in the wake of those great American architects of our history who have stood here before me; pride in the reflection that this forum of legislative debate represents human liberty in the purest form yet devised. Here are centered the hopes and aspirations and faith of the entire human race. I do not stand here as advocate for any partisan cause, for the issues are fundamental and reach quite beyond the realm of partisan consideration. They must be resolved on the highest plane of national interest if our course is to prove sound and our future protected. I trust, therefore, that you will do me the justice of receiving that which I have to say as solely expressing the considered viewpoint of a fellow American….

… I have from the beginning believed that the Chinese Communists’ support of the North Koreans was the dominant one. Their interests are at present parallel with those of the Soviet, but I believe that the aggressiveness recently displayed not only in Korea but also in Indo-China and Tibet and pointing potentially toward the South reflects predominantly the same lust for the expansion of power which has animated every would-be conqueror since the beginning of time….

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 I said, it proved to be a sound one, as we hurled back the invader and decimated his forces. 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. Such decisions have not been forthcoming.

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 one…

…For entertaining these views, all professionally designed to support our forces in Korea and to 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 the past by practically every military leader concerned with the Korean campaign, including our own Joint Chiefs of Staff.

I called for reinforcements, but was informed that reinforcements were not available. I made clear that if not permitted to destroy the enemy built-up bases north of the Yalu, if not permitted to utilize the friendly Chinese Force 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 was to be no hope of major reinforcements, the position of the command from the military standpoint forbade victory.

We could hold in Korea by constant maneuver and in an approximate area where our supply line advantages were in balance with the supply line disadvantages of the enemy, but we could hope at best for only an indecisive campaign with its terrible and constant attrition upon our forces if the enemy utilized its full military potential.

I have constantly called for the new political decisions essential to a solution.

Efforts have been made to distort my position. It has been said in effect that I was a warmonger. Nothing could be further from the truth.

I know war as few other men now living know it, and nothing to me is more revolting. I have long advocated its complete abolition, as its very destructiveness on both friend and foe has rendered it useless as a means of settling international disputes…

But once war is forced upon us, there is no other alternative than to apply every available means to bring it to a swift end. War’s very object is victory, not prolonged indecision.

In war there can be no substitute for victory.

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 wars. It points to no single instance where this end has justified that means, where appeasement has led to more than a sham peace. Like blackmail, it lays the basis for new and successively greater demands until, as in blackmail, violence becomes the only other alternative. Why, my soldiers asked me, surrender military advantages to an enemy in the field?

I could not answer.

Some, may say to avoid spread of the conflict into an all-out war with China, others, to avoid Soviet intervention. Neither explanation seems valid, for China is already engaging with the maximum power it can commit, and the Soviet will not necessarily mesh its actions with our moves. Like a cobra, any new enemy, will more likely strike whenever it feels that the relativity of military and other potentialities is in its favor on a world-wide basis.

The tragedy of Korea is further heightened by the fact that its military action was confined to its territorial limits. It condemns that nation, which it is our purpose to save, to suffer the devastating impact of full naval and air bombardment while the enemy’s sanctuaries are fully protected from such attack and devastation.

Of the nations of the world, Korea alone, up to now, is the sole one which has risked its all against communism. The magnificence of the courage and fortitude of the Korean people defies description. They have chosen to risk death rather than slavery. Their last words to me were: “Don’t scuttle the Pacific.”

I have just left your fighting sons in Korea. They have done their bust there, and I can report to you without reservation that they are splendid in every way.

It was my constant effort to preserve them and end this savage conflict honorably and with the least loss of time and a minimum sacrifice of life. Its growing bloodshed has caused me the deepest anguish and anxiety. Those gallant men will remain often in my thoughts and in my prayers always.

I am closing my 52 years of military service. When I joined the Army, even before the turn of the century, it was the fulfillment of all of my boyish hopes and dreams. The world has turned over many times since I took the oath at West Point, and the hopes and dreams have all since vanished, but I still remember the refrain of one of the most popular barracks ballads of that day which proclaimed most proudly that old soldiers never die; they just fade away. And like the old soldier of that ballad, I now close my military career and just fade away, an old soldier who tried to do his duty as God gave him the light to see that duty.
Good Bye.”

*****

And with that, General MacArthur did fade away, deferring future dealings with Communist aggression in East Asia to US politicians.

And US politicians would lose every deal.

We got beat in Vietnam and now… China damn near owns our economy. Plus, separately, we pay them a King’s ransom every year in US government debt interest…. more money than most can even imagine.

Maybe more learned military historians would say differently, but to me, MacArthur’s address to the joint session of congress April 19, 1951 was a eulogy to America’s strong fighting character. His notion of “Duty, Honor and Country” and the more traditional “Don’t Tread on Me” would last as a guide-on for individual soldiers and military units, but our gov’t attitude would be more of appeasement and accommodations in their handling of our international affairs.

Maybe the atomic bomb and its potential employment in future military engagements did all this. I don’t know but we certainly lost our commitment to win every military engagement we undertook – quickly and decisively. Our diplomats and gov’t bureaucrats didn’t buy into the notion that there is no substitute for victory in war paid for with American lives.

*****

A few months after MacArthur’s speech, Bill Lair, an enlisted veteran of the Second World War would make a less celebrated trip back across the Pacific, replacing MacArthur and Big Army in a way, to start his 1st CIA tour working with Thai police to form a paramilitary force to act as a vanguard should the communist push south towards Thailand.

His work would take two decades… and ultimately prove vital in preventing North Vietnamese invasions forces from taking Laos militarily.

Check your history books… after the war, in an act of appeasement, US gov’t officials gave Laos to the communists.

MacArthur wouldn’t have been surprised.


Story was originally published at: http://www.muleorations.com/blog/26-2


Background about the Author:    James E. Parker, Jr. a.k.a. Mule

James E. Parker, Jr. a.k.a. Mule

James E. Parker, Jr

Many people dream of success and living a fulfilling life. This Bronze Star and Purple Heart awarded veteran is one of the few people to ever actually achieve those dreams. Mr. James E. Parker, Jr. fought in Vietnam as a 2LT and eventually joined the CIA where he received two Certificates of Outstanding Service, a Certificate of Distinction and the Intelligence Medal. He has decided to share his insightful experiences and through stories on his website as well as in the books he has written which are listed below. The Lint Center for National Security Studies is thankful and proud that we are able to share some of his selected stories with you in our Virtual Archive.

Website:
http://muleorations.com/index.html

Books:
http://muleorations.com/books-for-sale.html

The Vietnam War Its Ownself (2015)
Kessler Country Homilies (2013)
Battle for Skyline Ridge (2013)
Covert Ops (1997)
Last Man Out (1996)
Codename Mule (1995)

Lint Center Announces Virtual Archive for National Security (LC-VANS)

Lint Center Announces Virtual Archive for National Security (LC-VANS)

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE         7/29/2016

The Lint Center for National Security Studies, a non-profit organization focused on supporting

the next generation of America’s National Security professionals through scholarship and

mentoring opportunities, today is pleased to announce the launch of its new Virtual Archive for

National Security.

 

It was only nine years after the devastation at Pearl Harbor in 1941 and no one believed that a

surprise attack could happen to U.S. forces ever again. But it did,” observed James R. Lint,

Founder and CEO of the Lint Center for National Security Studies. “The surprise attack by

communist forces from the North in Korea, sparking the Korean War, changed American

national security assessments, as it helped to crystalize the implications of strategic surprise in

geopolitics as well as to American security interests globally.”

 

The Lint Center Virtual Archive for National Security (LC-VANS) strives to voice, catalog, and

document the experiences of veterans, contractors, and civilian workers involved in major

pivotal points in U.S. national security and international affairs. By providing a resource to

students, historians and observers alike the Lint Center seeks to provide the information and

historical record necessary to ensure that pivotal mistakes are not repeated and so that America

does not see the vulnerability of biases enabling strategic surprises perpetuated.

 

The Lint Center for National Security Studies desires to preserve the histories of individuals who

actively shaped and developed the history of the National Security of the United States as it

presently stands.

 

Your experience as a veteran, contractor, or civil service member is essential to help others

understand how enemies can see the possibility to advance due to recent drawbacks, especially in

an early period of an emerging war.

 

“Being in the national security career field is not an easy profession,” Lint adds. “No one hears

about the minor successes, but everyone knows mistakes can be costly. We can now learn from

our mistakes, in order to confront similar situations where enemies may see a window of

vulnerability.”

 

LC-VANS allows you to submit your story in two ways as we collect and receive content in

these primary ways.

Submissions from the community about an interesting topic via the Contact Form.

Personal story submissions or interviews via Submit Your Story Form.

This press release was prepared by Lint Center volunteer, Stephanie Balepogi.

 

About the Lint Center:

The Lint Center for National Security Studies, Inc., founded in 2007, is a non-profit IRS 501 (c)

(3) organization awards award merit-based scholarships and mentoring programs for students

pursuing careers in national service with a particular focus on counterintelligence, military

intelligence, national security and cross-cultural studies. The Center is Veteran and minority

operated and managed. It awards scholarships semi-annually in both January and July. For more

information, please visit http://www.lintcenter.org/.

###

Mountain Dew

Caffeine Does Not Kill…CQ, Watch, Duty NCO, Staff Duty Proves That.

In the military, we all have had the honor or joy or horror to stand 24-hour duty. This normally starts at the end of the work day. Yes, you also had the honor of working that day also. This can test the human body and the crutches we use to excel on this duty, which for most of us are some form of caffeine.

Interview with Ambassador (RET) Robert G. Loftis

One of the more memorable experiences was taking the lead role in negotiating the Status of Forces Agreement with Iraq in 2008. As originally envisioned, the agreement would have allowed for a long-term presence of U.S. military forces in Iraq. As far as anyone was aware, this was the first such agreement in living memory with a country that was involved in fighting an active war, which made it particularly challenging. Moreover, there was far from unanimity within the Iraqi government or population that the U.S. should be allowed to stay. In the end, after negotiating most of the agreement, I was replaced in part over differences with more senior members of the Administration over what we should be prepared to cede to the Iraqis. And while my job had been to negotiate a long-term presence, political pressures in Iraq turned the agreement into a strict commitment for the U.S. to withdraw all of its forces by the end of 2011.

US Army Attaché Program Taken Over by Defense Intelligence Agency

July 1, 1965
Lori S. Tagg
USAICoE Command Historian

By Department of Defense Directive, on July 1, 1965, the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) established a single Defense Attaché System (DAS), thereby consolidating the attaché systems managed by the individual military departments. On that date, the US Army, Air Force, and Navy placed all their attachés on temporary duty with the DIA and relinquished their responsibilities for the mission.

Officially, the US Army attaché program began in 1889, but as early as 1815, it had detailed individuals to foreign countries as observers.  Capt. Sylvanus Thayer went to France to attend the military academy there and collect information on science and mathematics, while Maj. William McRee traveled to Belgium and France to survey those countries’ fortifications.  Several other Army officers followed in the subsequent decades.  In 1880, General William Tecumseh Sherman, Commanding General of the Army, who himself had undertaken an unofficial tour of Europe in the early 1870s, ordered all officers traveling abroad to obtain “information of value to the military service of the United States” and report their observations to the Adjutant General. This was not only the precursor to the official military attaché program formed nine years later, but also one of the catalysts for the formation of a Military Information Division (MID) in the Adjutant General’s office in 1885. The MID’s primary mission existence was to “obtain and collate such military data as may be deemed useful and beneficial to the Army at large.”

The US Navy had established a naval attaché system in 1882.  Seven years later, the US Army followed suit, when Congress authorized expenditures for officers detailed abroad for the “collection and classification of military information.”  Under the oversight of the MID of the Adjutant General’s Office, the attaché system was the foundation of national peacetime foreign intelligence throughout the late 19th and early 20th century.  The first official attachés were posted at the American legations in London, Paris, and Vienna, with St. Petersburg and Berlin added later that year.  By 1898, the Army had attachés stationed in 16 countries, including Italy, Spain, Belgium, Japan, Mexico, and several other Latin American nations.

The Army’s attaché in Mexico, Capt. (later Brig. Gen.) George Scriven, proved exceedingly valuable on the eve of the Spanish-American War in Cuba.  His report detailed the Cuban road and railway systems (with maps), military strength and location of defensive works, and attitudes of local inhabitants. Scriven’s report formed in large part MID’s pamphlet “Military Notes on Cuba” issued in June 1898.  Meanwhile, Capt. (later Gen.) Tasker Bliss, attaché in Madrid, forwarded reports on Spain’s decision to send troop reinforcements and munitions to the Caribbean island.  MID, accordingly, compiled highly accurate strength estimates of the Spanish Army throughout Cuba.

During the early part of the 20th century, the number of military attachés increased until, by 1914, the Army had 23 posts, more than any other country except Russia.  Twenty years later, more than 450 military, naval, and air attachés were serving abroad. Most of the military information the US Army had about the Axis powers prior to entering World War II came from peacetime collection efforts of these attachés.  Although often incomplete, the information they provided specified technological developments and possible employment of the modern weapons of war, such as the airplane, tank, and antiaircraft guns.

In the two decades after World War II, the Army continued to rely heavily on attachés as the most effective method of peacetime human intelligence.  Recognizing a long uncorrected deficiency, in 1946, it established the Strategic Intelligence School in Washington, DC, to train officers selected for such duty.  The numbers continued to grow.  In 1956, the Army had 68 attaché posts, the Navy 45 and the Air Force 53.

In 1963, a special Senate Subcommittee on National Security Staffing and Operations looked into the various attaché systems and found critical problems.  Foremost were duplication of effort and poor information sharing, as well as inefficient use of resources. The Secretary of Defense, consequently, ordered a comprehensive study on the attaché structure, which resulted in the recommendation for a centralized military attaché system under the DIA.  The trend toward consolidation had already begun when, in 1963, the Strategic Intelligence School and its Navy counterpart merged to become the Defense Intelligence School to train attachés from all the military services.

The Army’s attaché system remained a responsibility of the G-2 until DIA assumed the mission.  After that, the military services maintained and financed the personnel, but DIA was responsible for programming and overall financing of the new Defense Attaché System and served as a single chain of command.  DIA also determined the appropriate composition of attachés at each post as compatible with the intelligence collection goals.  In this way, the identity of the individual service attachés was ensured, but reporting was streamlined, policies and procedures were standardized, and the management of the total attaché effort was improved.

Photo Caption:
Col. Truman Smith (left), military attaché in Berlin from 1935-1939, provided valuable intelligence on Germany’s preparation and modernization for war. Upon returning to the US, he worked in the Military Intelligence Division as a German specialist. Charles Lindbergh (right) also helped collect intelligence on the German Luftwaffe.