|PRESIDENTIAL MILITARY SERVICE|
January 1, 2000
I hope you can help me out with some information. I am from Canada and trying to learn about American history and in particular U.S. presidents. I came across the following question in a quiz and despite my best efforts, I have not been able to find an answer. I have searched various web sites and sources to no avail. Your site has an extensive amount of information with regards to presidents and military service so that is why I am sending the question to you. Here it is: Who was the only U.S. president to actively lead troops while in office? Any help you can provide will be much appreciated.
Good question. I dont know the answer off hand myself, and I claim to know a bit about U.S. presidents & their military service. I would guess that George Washington is the answer, that is, he possibly led troops to put down something like the Whiskey Rebellion during his first term in office. But Ill have to look into this and get back to you. Are you sure that someone actually did? ~Ed.
|CONSULAR INSPECTIONS AND REPORTS|
February 5, 2000
I am currently researching the life of Mr. John Clark Higgins, American Consul in Dundee, between 1897 and 1909. As part of this study I have copies of consular inspection reports, obtained from the National Archives in Washington, relating to Consul Higgins effectiveness in promoting American trade expansion over that period.
You raise several interesting questions, detailed answers to which I dont have at hand and would be unable to provide without doing considerable research, Im afraid. I note, however, that the U.S. Consular Service of that day was a highly politicized branch of the U.S. Government: appointments were made based largely on the political influence of an individual with the political party in power in the the White House, not necessarily on experience or qualifications. Might I suggest that you peruse my book published about ten years ago by Kent State Univ. Press. So, the individual youre interested in may have gotten himself caught up in the political buzzsaw; it may have been much more a function of the timing of his problem. Have you checked the dates against possible changes of administration in Washington? Theres not much more I can provide in the way of illumination at this moment, but I am interested in the subject. Would you please keep me informed of any further light youre able to shed on the matter? ~Ed.
MORE Letters from Readers . . .
|LISTING THE BEST AND THE REST|
January 24, 2000
One of the wisest and most far-reaching decisions made by the U.S. Government at the end of World War II was to NOT prosecute Emperor Hirohito as a war criminal, but on the contrary, to leave him on the throne, thus putting a revered Japanese face on our occupation of Japan. [See editorial, The Best and the Rest, in the present issue of this journal.]
We installed General MacArthur as Shogunthe power behind the throne. This was a position well known to and accepted by the Japanese people, at least since the beginning of the Tokugawa period in the seventeenth century. MacArthur did not occupy any portion of the Imperial Palace, but installed himself in a modern office buildingthe Dai Ichi (Number One) buildingacross the moat from the palace.
J. Edgar Williams
The foregoing, written by a member of American Diplomacys editorial review board, was sent as comment on the editorial in the current issue of the journal. Retired diplomat Ed Williams served as a U.S. Army officer in Japan shortly after the end of the Second World War. ~Ed.
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