The President Trumans Decision For Dismissing General Macarthur Background Essay

In June 1950, after North Korea invaded South Korea, General Douglas MacArthur was appointed commander of the United Nations pushes defending South Korea. In the beginning, MacArthur was hailed as a hero after he carried out a legendary amphibious assault at Inchon on September 1950. But seven months later on Apr 11, 1951, President Harry Truman relieved him from duty for making public claims that contradicted the official policies of the United States Government, especially with regards to Truman's order to limit military connections with the media. MacArthur's dismissal remains a controversial topic in the field of civil-military relationships.

Research question

The dismissal of Standard MacArthur was a decision that was harsh to make especially taking to consideration the great contribution he previously made in WWII and the Korean War. I'll explore, analyze and present my viewpoints in this newspaper based on the several factors that led to this decision and the consequences that adopted.

MacArthur and Truman

"It is very simple and we all know it. We just need 5 Atom Bombs and we drop it in the 5 main Chinese language Cities. In case we do this then the Russians know that we suggest business and that people will do it in Russian if required and that will end the warfare. " This outrageous statement made by MacArthur to a French journalist plainly showed the space MacArthur would gladly go to in order to get rid of this conflict. Despite his statue and accomplishments, MacArthur's attitude on the Korean War was clearly merciless, egoistic, provoking, arrogant and over-confident. The success at Inchon which been one of the most incredible fight strategies devised in modern background was a substantial contributor to this frame of mind (Pearlman, 2008). He was then starting to be a political liability of the U. S. federal government especially regarding its international policy.

Truman on the other hand having made the decision of dropping both Atomic Bombs in Japan was ever before reluctant to utilize such technology in particular when it supposed that it would have been at least the 3rd time an Atomic Bomb was found in Asian garden soil in a space of 7 years (Rovere & Schlesinger, 1992). Getting the burden of leading the democratic and free world, his frame of mind to the Korean War had to be politically accurate and suitable for all other nations especially to the newly independent ones to be able to prevent communist effect or empowerment in those countries.

It was clear that the career of these two great men conflicted. MacArthur who was simply a armed forces commander and a warfare strategist purpose was simple: win all the battles that may lead to complete success in the warfare. In this profession, one can be expected to be merciless which completely contradicts to the values of the vocation that Truman needed to represent, as Chief executive of AMERICA of America. Being president of America recommended not only leading the planet by example, but also making utilitarian decisions which he'd be held accountable for. MacArthur need not take the burden of handling the political implications after victory which explains why he is willing to win the war by all means necessary (Wainstock, 1999).

Defining Political and Military services Policy

Containment policy initiated by the Truman supervision meant using military, economic, and diplomatic strategies to stall the get spread around of communism, enhance America's security and influence abroad, preventing a "domino impact" which intended that if one land in an area came under the influence of communism, then the surrounding countries would follow in a domino effect.

This insurance plan however was later to be proven impossible to be adopted word for word without marvelous cost engaged and Truman was the first chief executive to comprehend its complexness. MacArthur however clearly experienced his own interpretation of this policy. He seen Truman's methodology towards this insurance policy as poor, cowardly and contradicting especially regarding the way the Leader decided to react after Chinese treatment in the warfare (Rovere & Schlesinger, 1992). MacArthur who was then deeply affected by the defeat required a swift methodology towards communism where he strongly insisted in bringing the battle in mainland China but Truman on the other side was pleaded British Best Minister Attlee never to intervene in China as it can probably precipitate WW3.

MacArthur tried to influence the insurance policies of his government by force in misinterpreting and violating specific directives from his superiors. Truman's order granted 26 June 1950 to avoid attacking North Korean positions beyond the 38th parallel was broadly interpreted by MacArthur and perceived as not a direct prohibition to go beyond the 38th (Pearlman, 2008). To him, the field commander should have the power to look for the immediate fight situation and react accordingly, despite the politics repercussions. In MacArthur's brain, the Truman administration clearly didn't understand the problem on the battlefield.

In each circumstance of these two market leaders, both power were limited however in Truman's circumstance, it was more of a choice which his conscience happily accepted. It had been from here the relationship between MacArthur and Truman deteriorated quickly where MacArthur commenced to be immediate to the multimedia about his disgust towards the Truman administration's decisions. MacArthur's insubordination screen in the press then introduced a fresh military insurance policy enforced by Leader Truman that all military staff (especially MacArthur's) interactions with the press to be constrained.

MacArthur's Dismissal

By this time around MacArthur really was getting into Truman's nerves. MacArthur's attitude for the already troubled situation in the conflict and his constant disrespect to the President's decision made him a liability. Truman had to eliminate the troublesome standard, so in the press release President Truman said the next: "I had developed thought long and hard of this question of extending this battle in Asia. . I believe that in all my heart that the course we could following is the best course In several events had managed to get evident that General MacArthur does not agree with the policy, I've therefore contemplate it essential to ease Standard MacArthur so that you will see without doubt or distress to real goal and goal of our coverage. "

The reality MacArthur disagreed with the Truman Administration's foreign policy caused him to disobey his purchases and try to seek a big change to his own plans. In disobeying his requests, MacArthur violated the first duty of any armed forces man: to obey the orders of his superiors (Wainstock, 1999). A soldier can disagree with insurance policy within the demand structure on a private basis but not publicly. In the event that a soldier cannot perform his orders, he is duty-bound to resign (Wainstock, 1999).

Truman didn't remove MacArthur due to his repeated insubordination. He removed him to enforce his procedures of Containment & most importantly the method of which America will keep up to this plan, in the most humanely way possible, a way which would motivate other allies of the democratic world and get the hearts of people ruled by communism. Truman's stand in regard to Korean Communist aggression is everything but intense and provocative. It shows complete humility of most powerful man on the globe in addition to a huge desire for sincere serenity among all nations. Mr. Truman patiently and effectively directed the United States in its new overseas policy of European unity. I think President Truman played out a great role in promoting cooperation among countries and presenting steps that lead to peacefulness.

However, many South Koreans who resided through the Korean War regret MacArthur's dismissal because the division of their nation was long term indefinitely (Rovere & Schlesinger, 1992). With out a figure to tightly stand up against Korean and Chinese communist, unity is no longer possible. MacArthur's dismissal supposed no complete victory against communism which in later years led to continuous and infinite confrontations between the two divided says.


When MacArthur went back to the united states after being terminated, he was greeted by extravagant festivities and parades in SAN FRANCISCO BAY AREA and New York. MacArthur came back to Washington where he was asked to address a joint session of Congress. After being interrupted by 30 standing ovations, he concluded his conversation by musing, "Old soldiers never perish, they just fade. " His subsequent visit to NY was outlined by the major ticker-tape parade then seen.

Many American cannot see Truman's rationale of minimizing MacArthur. To them MacArthur was a heroic patriotic general who had committed all his life to the country where he fought for freedom. MacArthur's supporters experienced justification to be annoyed at his dismissal. MacArthur was absolutely a great armed service brain and an American hero; he previously been a crucial leader on earth War II Pacific marketing campaign, and got devised the amazing getting at Inchon that flipped the Korean Conflict around.

On the main one hands he was a armed forces genius who offered America brilliantly; on the other side he was an egomaniac who refused to check out orders and acquired America involved with battles to serve his own personal and politics ends (Rovere & Schlesinger, 1992). Truman was not unaware of the great risks involved with firing MacArthur. This knowing of risks postponed his ultimate decision to the detriment of his credibility at home and abroad. But they are decisions, risks and consequences that must definitely be borne by Truman.

The major outcomes were lack of prestige for the office of the Leader and the fall of the confidence of the American people into the administration. Despite the unfavorable decision, it is vital that whenever the military situation outruns the politics objectives, the armed forces situation must be realigned with the political concerns (Rovere & Schlesinger, 1992). In firing MacArthur on 10 April 1951, Truman started out the long term in looking to get the armed service situation back on the right track with his international insurance plan and reinstate his trustworthiness with U. S. Allies.


The controversy between Truman and MacArthur centered not on armed forces issues but on the right of your Chief executive to demand conformity to his plans as Command-in-Chief of the armed forces. They were not personal issues or petty disagreements between a commander and his subordinate. Truman was backed by the Constitution of the United States (Rovere & Schlesinger, 1992).

There is without doubt that MacArthur was an educated and experienced commander. However, for not spotting Truman's policy of containment that did not prioritize Asia but American Europe where in fact the risk of Soviet domination was already wide-spread, MacArthur's role was to handle U. S. plan in Korea and not to entangle himself in questioning what that policy was. Customarily, a military services man is above politics or at least not engaged publicly, and definitely not in public conflict with superiors (Wainstock, 1999). Truman rose above the conflict to protect the right of the Leader to formulate international insurance plan as he sees fit in consultation along with his advisors.

But the Korean Warfare was not a complete war, and a whole victory had not been its goal (Wainstock, 1999). Korea was fought as a politics war for politics goals. It was a restricted goal and clearly within the platform of Truman's overall foreign-policy strategy (Rovere & Schlesinger, 1992). Korea was not the sole factor Truman was required to consider as his first priorities lay in Europe where the principle enemy was the Soviet Union rather than Korea or China. He was a lot more concerned with building up the defenses in Western Europe and retaining a cohesive NATO alliance.

President Truman's decision to dismiss MacArthur had not been appreciated until the later years. But till today Truman was nobly accepted for his decision of especially not intervening in China even though communist threat was alarming and eminent in those days. He stood his floor of enforcing his insurance plan and also led a good example for his successors in the old age to follow about the means in which the guidelines should be enforced which were deemed satisfactory to the American people and people from the free world. I'd like to end my newspaper with the following memo from the previous first lady Eleanor Roosevelt had written to the Nobel Serenity Award Committee in 1953: "Mr. Truman has performed a great service in protecting peace by a continuing and closely built-in policy of building the economic, political and spiritual power of the, THE BURKHA to meet, contain, and eventually to beat the hazard to Western freedom, and to Western religion and culture, from Soviet imperialism. his stand in regard to Korean Communist hostility are all things that need no elaboration by me. Mr. Truman patiently and efficiently directed the United States in its new overseas policy of Traditional western unity. I believe President Truman performed a great role in promoting cooperation among countries and presenting measures that lead to peace. "

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