Academic journal article Military Review

GENERAL IKE: A Personal Reminiscence

Academic journal article Military Review

GENERAL IKE: A Personal Reminiscence

Article excerpt

GENERAL IKE: A Personal Reminiscence, John S.D. Eisenhower, Free Press, New York, 2003, 267 pages, $16.00.

General Ike: A Personal Reminiscence fills a small, but significant, gap in the literature about General Dwight D. Eisenhower. But, the book is not a definitive discussion of "Ike's" performance as the Supreme Commander of the Allied Expeditionary Forces. John S.D. Eisenhower writes a more endearing, intimate account of a man he knew as "Dad." Having for many years resisted calls to write about his father, Eisenhower was finally moved to do so because of a sense of duty and to correct a growing body of "misleading material." The result is a highly readable book about Ike's early years and military career.

Eisenhower presents his material in a thematic rather than a strict chronology format, which facilitates multiple uses and gives the book the feel of an essay collection. Each essay focuses on Ike's relationship with a specific person or group, from his days as a subordinate to Generals Fox Conner, John J. Pershing, and Douglas MacArthur, to his role as supreme commander and his interactions with Britain's Prime Minister Winston Churchill, France's President Charles De Gaulle, Britain's Field Marshal Bernard Montgomery, and his own subordinate, General George S. Patton.

Eisenhower places value in confirming or refuting certain arguments made by historians regarding the strategic and operational direction of the Allied war effort. For example, he seeks to silence critics of Ike's supposed passivity during planning for Operation Market-Garden by demonstrating that Ike approved the plan and never doubted its feasibility. …

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