Friday, October 03, 2008

Thought provoking piece by John Eisenhower

Today's IHT has this piece by John S.D. Eisenhower, Ike's son.

I offer it without comment, other than it's revelations and opinion are thought provoking.

What do you think?



Charles Gittings said...

I think he's right, for much the same reason that lawyers and politicians should avoid any possible appearence of a conflict of interest.

mike said...

Let us hope that Biden, Palin, and McCain had the same conversation about being captured with their sons. Did McCain's POW status during Vietnam cause his father Admiral McCain, the Commander in Chief in the Pacific a conflict of interest???

I agree that their presence in-country may put their mates in danger. However I think there are ways to mitigate that danger inexpensively, and that is probably being done. If no one knows what unit they are in or where they are stationed then their unit cannot be specifically targeted.

Additionally, I think the morale building effect on the nation as a whole is beneficial. So I believe that Ike's son is wrong on this call. We need more sons and daughters of the elite serving in the Armed Forces.

That said, I will still purchase Brigadier General Eisenhower's new biography of Zachary Taylor. It would be interesting to compare his views and Pierre Berton's views of the Battle of Fort Harrison near Terre Haute Indiana during the War of 1812.

Charles Gittings said...

The morale building effect on the nation???

Iraq was and is both a despicable crime and a disgraceful military failure, and you're worried about cheer-leading?

That's exactly the sort of clueless nonsense that got us into this idiotic mess in the first place.

mike said...

Ike the Elder was right of course in his advice to his son in the summer of 52 that under no circumstances must he ever be captured. But I would bet that Ike the elder never exerted influence to have Major Eisenhower moved back to a safer Division HQ job. That was probably done by the Army Chief of Staff at the time "Lightning Joe" Collins or someone in his office. There was still a corporate memory in the Army at the time of Georgie Patton's conflict of interest when he sent Task Force Baum 50 miles behind enemy lines to rescue his POW son-in-law. The movers and shakers in the Army definitely did not want to face a similar situation.

Call me hard-hearted, but I tend to think that POW rescue operations like TF Baum, Son Tay, and Tehran are not a good utilization of resources. Cabanatuan and Los Banos were a different situation.

By the nation's morale, I was not referring to current events. I never supported the Chimp and his invasion of Iraq. It was amore a general statement.