Jean Edward Smith's new biography, Eisenhower in War and Peace, follows biographies by Jim Newton published in , Carlo d'Este in. : Eisenhower in War and Peace : Jean Edward Smith: Books. Unmatched in insight, Eisenhower in War and Peace at last gives us an Eisenhower for our time—and for the ages. Praise for Eisenhower in War and Peace “[A].


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Smith repeatedly shows Eisenhower's abilities as a man of war, though eisenhower in war and peace an instigator. This would prove a key character trait in the years to come. Eisenhower's presence in a warring world proved important, though it was not the only situation in which he excelled.

After a forty year service in the US military, many would likely want to retire to a quiet life. As Smith illustrates, Eisenhower had no interest in eisenhower in war and peace approach, choosing instead to let himself be lured into a prominent civilian post as President of Columbia University.

Eisenhower in War and Peace by Jean Edward Smith

Perhaps a precursor to a political future that paralleled Eisenhower in war and peace Wilson, Eisenhower's time at the university was short-lived, using it as a stepping stone to the political realm, when one of the major parties came calling.

After some key political maneuvering, Eisenhower surrounded himself with strong-willed men who helped use his military popularity to sculpt a hero persona for the electorate.

Choosing Senator Richard Nixon as his running mate after securing the Republican presidential nomination might have been one of the worst political decisions Eisenhower made, though Smith chooses to recount some of the famed foibles, including the Checkers speech, which almost cost Tricky Dick the vice-presidency.

For a man who had never dabbled in formal political activities beforehand, Smith argues that Eisenhower had been around political figures for much of his military career, including Roosevelt, de Gaulle, and Churchill. After a landslide victory in November, Eisenhower was able to transition nicely from the military battlefield to a political one, equally riddled with hidden enemies and land mines.

America was in the midst of an ideological war in Korea and the Chinese were are thumping its own chest in a stance to create supremacy in the region.

Smith weaves through some key early Cold War skirmishes that placed peace in the most precarious position, but also exemplified America's strong stance as a superpower that had tossed isolationism to the wayside.

Perhaps Eisenhower's strong military background helped morph America into a eisenhower in war and peace, ready to pounce when it saw fit.

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Smith eludes to this repeatedly eisenhower in war and peace Eisenhower remained firmly rooted into keeping the world from falling into the clutches of communists. Riddled with some health concerns, Eisenhower had to trust in his inner circle, a collection of powerful cabinet secretaries, to run things when he was convalescing, though Smith does not spin the narrative in such a way that the President was out of the loop at any point.

eisenhower in war and peace Eisenhower was equally capable of running a tight ship on the domestic front, where he pushed through a plan to create an inter-state highway system that remains an essential part of travel within the continental United States. Equally important, Eisenhower used his presidential abilities to push early parts of the civil rights movement into reality, especially racial integration in eisenhower in war and peace schools.

Smith presents a succinct narrative about the goings-on in Little Rock, Arkansas, which followed the Brown v. Eisenhower would not stand down, choosing to promote the constitution than seeking to appease the southern segregationists. This push towards equality and respect for the US Constitution lasted throughout Eisenhower's two terms in the Oval Office and helped to strengthen the importance of his peacetime leadership.

Eisenhower in War and Peace

Smith uses the biography to address two further themes worth noting, which reemerge throughout the text. The first eisenhower in war and peace best described as Eisenhower's fallible nature, more a man with faults than the god-like general that is depicted in the history texts. While no marriage to a soldier can be easy, the strain exemplified by both Ike and Mamie Eisenhower seems to have created numerous fissures that almost cost them their union.

Smith discusses Mamie's long periods of loneliness that were only solved by regular drinking.

Review of “Eisenhower in War and Peace” by Jean Edward Smith

This abuse exacerbated an already problematic situation of being apart for long periods of time. However, Ike was equally to blame when it came to strains on the marriage, having seeming found happiness in the arms of Kay Summersby, a member of Britain's Motor Transport Corps during the Second World War.

Smith pulls no punches in presenting this amorous connection, though mentions that few early Eisenhower biographers focused too much on their connection, perhaps a sign of the times. That Eisenhower could foster such a connection to a eisenhower in war and peace other than his wife was only further strengthened in a letter Eisenhower sent to General Marshall around eisenhower in war and peace time fighting ended in Europe.

In it, Eisenhower ponders the possibility of a permanent position within the military hierarchy in Europe, thereby facilitating his ability to divorce Mamie and pursue Summersby.

While this did not come to pass, it eisenhower in war and peace come up throughout Smith's narrative and is worth a mention.

A theme from the latter part of the biography that finds itself repeated would be the parallels Eisenhower draws between himself and General Ulysses S. It should be noted that Eisenhower did not seek to inflate his own ego in making this connection, but commented that they had both been powerful generals in prominent wars and ascended to the White House.


Military men with no previous political involvement becoming Commanders-in-Chief for eight years, Eisenhower and Grant offered America the best they had to offer on the battlefield and when waging war with Congress.