The nice thing about writing a blog…
is you get to connect with some pretty smart people. I’m not a history buff, so this assist regarding the total hack job by Chris Hitchens (see here) comes from Jim who both knows a bit about our military history as well as being retired military himself:
In re your comments concerning Hitchen’s column on chickenhawks:
Please note that in addition to Lincoln’s service as an elected (militia) company officer in the Blackhawk War, Harry Truman was an Artillery Captain during WWI.
“As for McClellan, he was fired for failure to prosecute the war, not his “slavery-loving.” Although it must be said that if McClellan were truely a “slavery-lover”, he probably would not have stayed in the Union Army.”
“As for the “glorious” Douglas MacArthur, his rise from Major to Brigadier during WWI came at the expense of the deaths of a majority of his superior officers in the 42nd Infantry Division, whose symbol of “Half a Rainbow” represents the horrendous over-all percentage of (dead) casualties suffered by that division in WWI. But MacArthur really “made his bones” when he became the U.S. Army officer willing to lead an assault against, and order his troops to fire on, American veterans assembled outside Washington during the early 1920s and seeking to persuade Congress to provide the WWI veterans bonus that had been promised to them. Subsequently, MacArthur was sent as far away from America as possible while still being rewarded, which turned out to be the post of Miliary Governor of the Philipines. During the next decase and a half, he remained in exile, amassing a large fortune from “gifts” given him by Filipino politicians. He totally failed to prepare the Philipines for defense against the Japanese, even failing to take elementary precautions and alerts AFTER Pearl Harbor. Subsequent to the Japanese invasion, his limited WWI (and total lack of post-WWI) combat experience led him to make additional disastrous mistakes in disposing his forces in the Philipines, resulting in his forces being penned up at Corregidor. He was given command of the Pacific Theater based on his SENIORITY, not his experience or any demonstrated capability, a seniority he built while sitting on his butt in the Viceroy’s Palace in Manila. And, finally, he was removed by Truman during the Korean War for insubordination. And deservedly so, as he repeatedly disobeyed the orders of his Command-In-Chief and civilian authority, a direct violation of his oath of office as an officer of the United States. And no amount of self-pitying West Point speeches will change that fact.”
Jeez. First Michael Kelly now Christopher Hitchens. You would think that the Washington Post and Slate would employ fact checkers. You would think that, but you would be wrong…