This new, in-depth life of Eisenhower offers fresh perspectives, not only on World War II and the Korean War but also on the Cold War, the civil rights movement, McCarthyism, the U-2 crisis and Vietnam.
Geoffrey Perret's Eisenhower gives us, for the first time, the whole man. It brings together a huge amount of material, much of it made available to researchers only in recent years. The result is nothing less than an original, authoritative and provocative portrait of Eisenhower, as both soldier and president.
Far from being the easygoing and pliant figure often depicted by his critics, Eisenhower is revealed here as a complex, tough-minded and highly capable man, one who rose to the top of the world's most competitive profession, the modern military. His career as a soldier would prove to be an excellent preparation for most, though not all, of the major challenges he faced as America's thirty-fourth president.
Eisenhower's letters and diaries—many of them never seen by previous biographers—have contributed profoundly to this groundbreaking work. So, too, have dozens of interviews with people who knew him well. These fresh sources have made it possible to resolve many intriguing questions that have, until now, been matters only of speculation and rumor:
Did he have an affair with Kay Summersby, his wartime driver?
Why did he have so much trouble with Field-Marshal Montgomery?
Did the Columbia University trustees appoint him by accident, as campus whispers claimed, in a bungled attempt to offer the university presidency to his brother Milton?
Just how did he bring the Korean War to an end within months of becoming president?
What did he really think of Richard Nixon?
Geoffrey Perret, the author of Old Soldiers Never Die: The Life of Douglas MacArthur, as well as There's a War to Be Won, an acclaimed history of the United States Army in World War II, is uniquely qualified to write this new life of Dwight D. Eisenhower, a work that is worthy of its remarkable and controversial subject.
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