Dwight D. Eisenhower: Soldier, President, Statesman

By Joann P. Krieg | Go to book overview

(strengthened no doubt by his postwar military services) about the JCS, service interests, and defense politics. In many respects, this confluence of historical factors substantially informed the New Look of 1953. What is fascinating is that three decades later the U.S. defense posture is still fundamentally shaped by that original Eisenhower framework for protracted conflict in the Cold War. It is easier to delineate and appreciate this contribution once we separate the broader Eisenhower Doctrine from the particular force posture of the New Look. History will have to judge whether flexible response--despite its considerable merits--is a more suitable force posture. But flexible response was not a substitute for the Eisenhower Doctrine.


NOTES
1.
Fred I. Greenstein, The Hidden-Hand Presidency: Eisenhower as Leader ( New York: Basic Books, 1982); and "Eisenhower as an Activist President: A New Look at the Evidence," Political Science Quarterly 94 (Winter 1979- 1980): 575-99. See also Gary W. Reichard , "Eisenhower as President: The Changing View," South Atlantic Quarterly 77 (Summer 1978): 265-81; Douglas Yates Jr., The Politics of Management: Exploring the Inner Workings of Public and Private Organizations ( San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1985), ch. 7, "Conflict Management in Practice: Case Studies," pp. 166-98.
2.
John L. Gaddis, Strategies of Containment: A Critical Appraisal of Postwar American National Security Policy ( New York: Oxford University Press, 1982); Arnold Kanter, Defense Politics: A Budgetary Perspective ( Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1979); Douglas Kinnard, President Eisenhower and Strategy Management: A Study in Defense Politics ( Lexington: University Press of Kentucky, 1977); Lawrence J. Korb, The Joint Chiefs of Staff: The First Twenty-five Years ( Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1976) and "The Budget Process in the Department of Defense: The Strengths and Weaknesses of Three Systems," Public Administration Review 37 (July-August 1977): 334-46.
3.
Douglas Kinnard, The Secretary of Defense ( Lexington: University Press of Kentucky, 1980), p. 71.
4.
Gaddis, Strategies of Containment, p. 185.
5.
Available in Naval War College Review (May-June 1975). Gaddis' Strategies of Containment, p. ix, argues that postwar defense policy is divisible into five "strategic" or "geopolitical" codes: (1) the 1947-1949 strategy of containment implemented by the Truman administration; (2) the 1950 NSC-68 implemented by happenstance in the Korean War (1950-1953); (3) the 1953-1960 Eisenhower New Look; (4) the 1961-1969Kennedy-Johnson flexible response strategy; and (5) the 1970-1979Nixon-Kissinger détente policy continued by the Ford-Carter administrations. The Reagan administration has returned not so much to flexible response--now a basic principle of U.S. policy but to a major arms buildup. Containment has remained a fundamental element of the U.S. Cold War doctrine. The policy debate has been over cost, force structure, and U.S. aggressiveness.
6.
See Gaddis, Strategies of Containment, ch. 4, "NSC-68 and the Korean War," pp. 89-126; Paul Y. Hammond, "NSC-68: Prologue to Rearmament," in Warner R. Schilling , Paul Y. Hammond, and Glenn H. Snyder, Strategy, Politics and Defense Budgets ( New York: Columbia University Press, 1962), pp. 267-378; Samuel F. Wells,Jr

-167-

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