TRUMAN, Harry S. Typed letter signed (''Harry Truman'') as President, TO CORNELIUS VANDERBILT, JR. (1898-1974), Washington, 18 April 1951. 1 page, 4to (8 7/8 x 7 in.), White House stationery, envelope, integral blank, in fine condition.
TRUMAN, Harry S. Typed letter signed ("Harry Truman") as President, TO CORNELIUS VANDERBILT, JR. (1898-1974), Washington, 18 April 1951. 1 page, 4to (8 7/8 x 7 in.), White House stationery, envelope, integral blank, in fine condition.
TRUMAN DISMISSES GENERAL MACARTHUR: "THE CAUSE OF WORLD PEACE IS MORE IMPORTANT THAN ANY ONE INDIVIDUAL"
A candid letter in which Truman explains his momentous decision to dismiss General Douglas MacArthur as Supreme Commander of U.N. forces in Korea. Here, he briefly but eloquently explains his decision: "My thanks for your kind expressions of commendation and approval of the action I was compelled to take in the interest of our policy in the Far East. It was distressing to relieve such a great military commander of his duties, but the cause of world peace is more important than any one individual".
In the course of the Korean War, General MacArthur quarreled publicly with the President over strategy. The general voiced his opinion that resisting communism in the Far East was of greater importance than in Western Europe. Truman disagreed. The President also became angered when MacArthur advocated the use of nuclear weapons against the Chinese Army. Truman promptly issued a directive to subordinates, military and diplomatic, to clear their public statements before they were issued, but MacArthur ignored it. America's allies began to doubt Truman's authority over the outspoken general. Truman finally dismissed MacArthur, replacing him with Matthew B. Ridgway.
Truman was met with a storm of criticism after he fired MacArthur: "To the great part of the country MacArthur was a glorious figure, a real-life, proven American hero, the brilliant, handsome general who had led American forces to stunning triumph in the greatest of all wars" (McCullough, Truman, p. 847).