Harry and Ike: The Partnership That Remade the Postwar World
"Harry S. Truman and Dwight D. Eisenhower worked more closely between 1945 and 1952 than any other two American presidents of the twentieth century. They were partners in changing America's role in the world and in responding to the challenge of a Soviet Europe, yet they are remembered more for the acrimony that ended their friendship. Both were men of character, intelligence, and principle, and as the nation learned in the 1950s, they could also hold a grudge. Drawing on letters, diaries, and interviews with close associates, this is the first examination of the warm friendship, bitter rupture, and eventual reconciliation between two remarkable Americans. From the author of "The Eisenhowers: Reluctant Dynasty" and "Dark Horse" comes a unique volume focusing exclusively on the relationship between Dwight D. Eisenhower and Harry S. Truman.
Harry and "Ike" grew up 150 miles apart in the heart of America. They met during World War II, when Truman became commander-in-chief after FDR's death. Together they would oversee not only the great Allied victory but also the restructuring of the U.S. military and the reconstruction of Europe. Together they would forge history's most successful alliance, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.
Their initial relationship was so respectful and warm that Truman offered to step aside in the 1948 presidential election if Ike would agree to run on the Democratic ticket. Preferring to remain out of politics, Eisenhower declined and instead became president of Columbia Uni-versity. Truman helped make Ike a wealthy man by granting him a special tax break for his memoirs. Eisenhower later prepared to remove himself from contention for thepresidency in 1952 if Robert A. Taft supported Truman on NATO. But Ike's friendship with Truman would not survive the 1952 presidential campaign, and for nearly a decade the former allies were engaged in an epic feud. It was not until the funeral of John F. Kennedy that the two men put aside their differences and reestablished a semblance of their previous bond.
In exploring the complexity of character, intelligence, and principle, Neal provides a fresh perspective on two giants of the twentieth century, and on the American presidency.
ISBN: 0684853558 / 9780684853550
Author: Steve Neal
Publisher: Scribner Book Company
Length: 368 Pages