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"Why Did MacArthur Become a Hero? In a Crisis We..." Topic

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Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP27 Nov 2019 9:32 p.m. PST

… Are Desperate for Leaders.

"Douglas MacArthur has been dead for over fifty years yet he remains one of the most controversial military figures of the twentieth century. His well-polished reputation was far from unanimously accepted among his contemporaries, and a half-century has done nothing to smooth the contradictions of his personality and his career. There remains no middle ground with Douglas MacArthur.

Eight hours after receiving reports of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, MacArthur's procrastination resulted in half his air force being destroyed on the ground at Clark Field in the Philippines. Blindsided by the speed of the ensuing Japanese invasion, he belatedly ordered a retreat to Bataan but failed to stockpile food and supplies on the dead-end peninsula…."
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langobard Supporting Member of TMP28 Nov 2019 2:13 a.m. PST

As the article states, MacArthur did a great job of controlling the media.

I give him credit for the Inchon landing, but his record in WW2 starts with the disaster of letting the Japanese destroy his airforce on the ground, and really, for the rest of WW2, he is average at best.

Still, as noted, it is very difficult to be objective about him.

Thanks Armand!

Wackmole9 Supporting Member of TMP28 Nov 2019 6:39 a.m. PST


I do believe in the buck stop here but in the Philippines, Several of his staff/Generals should take some of the blame.

The Defend all beaches strategy was based on future troop levels and was written by General Eisenhower.

The failure of the Air corp was clear the fault of General Lewis H. Brereton. He was trying to move the B-17s and P-40s to Mindanao . He order the launching of every plane (fueled or not) to circle the islands. It was just fate that they all were on the ground when the delayed Japanese attack happened.

Legion 428 Nov 2019 7:55 a.m. PST

Yes, Inchon and probably the retaking of the PI in WWII were some of his best operations.

emckinney28 Nov 2019 9:55 a.m. PST

FDR helped by not sacking him. FDR figured he'd be less of a problem in the depths of the South Pacific than unemployed in Washington as a rallying point for the "most conservative" elements in American politics.

It didn't help that MacArthur ignored Hoover's orders not to attack the Bonus Army three times. Starting the attack at 9pm was criminally stupid because it ensured maximal chaos.

As a result, FDR owed MacArthur something of a political debt for easing his way into the White House by severely damaging Hoover's reputation.

Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP28 Nov 2019 10:14 a.m. PST

A votre service mon ami!. (smile)


Dn Jackson28 Nov 2019 6:15 p.m. PST

I am a Marine, so not a MacArthur fan. He was the commander in chief of the Philippines, making whatever happened there his responsibility. When you have a division of Marines, Inchon is a no brainer. The one thing he did that I'll back him on as being brilliant was denying the Soviets any occupation area in Japan. It kept it from being turned in to another Germany, divided for 60 years and a center of the Cold War.

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