HARRY AND IKE: The Partnership That Remade the Postwar World

Steve Neal, Author . Scribner $26 (356p) ISBN 978-0-684-85355-0

Chicago Sun-Times journalist Neal (The Eisenhowers: Reluctant Dynasty, etc.) makes quite a reach to document a close relationship that never was. Eisenhower and Truman—who agreed on little—would concur that their two presidencies played a large role in shaping the postwar world. They would no doubt be astonished, however, to find themselves called partners. Neal makes much of the fact that the two men (who did not meet until 1945) were raised within 150 miles of each other. He also labors to apply the label "partnership" to Eisenhower's service under Truman following WWII, first as Chief of Staff, U.S. Army (1945–1948), and later, following a two-year stint as president of Columbia University (1948–1950), as Supreme Allied Commander for NATO/Europe and Commander of U.S. Forces, Europe (1950–1952). As Neal himself recounts, Ike, a national hero courted by both parties, refused Truman's invitation to run for president as a Democrat in '52 and instead went Republican. During his campaign, for the sake of political expediency, he refrained from defending his and Truman's mutual friend, George C. Marshall, from unfounded attacks by Senator Joe McCarthy, which infuriated Truman. After Ike's election, Truman received not a single White House invitation and was never consulted on any issues. The two men met rarely thereafter, and when they did it was usually at funerals: the first of them Marshall's in 1959, the last of them Kennedy's in 1963. There is an interesting study yet to be written about Harry and Ike, but it will not include the word partnership in its subtitle. (Sept.)

Reviewed on: 07/09/2001
Release date: 00/00/0000
Paperback - 368 pages - 978-0-7432-2374-4
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