GREAT MISTAKES OF THE WAR by Hanson W. Baldwin

GREAT MISTAKES OF THE WAR

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A short book, but it packs a wallop; succinctly without pulling his punches, the well known Times correspondent expresses his opinion of the basic mistakes of the war, mistakes which may have won the war- or contributed to it- but have lost us the peace. This is due in some measure to our political immaturity, due, he feels, even more, to President Roosevelt's faith in his own judgment regarding Russia and Stalin, his inclination to make decisions on his own. He analyzes at various levels, the mistakes made with Russia- too much faith, too much fear, too naive an assumption that we were in the role of suppliant and ally. He does acknowledge that post-event criticism is easier than prophecy, but he puts himself on the side of those who urged that we let Germany and Russia fight it out. (Might be a bit of confusion as to chronology here?) Another vital error was the stand on ""unconditional surrender"" which inevitably led to unlimited war, even to the Atom bomb. Yet another error of Judgment he feels lost us Eastern Europe (when we decided against the British policy of attacking through the Balkans)- and central Europe (when we agreed to join occupation of Berlin). Finally, he discusses successive errors in Asia; the major one of betraying China to Russia the interservice jealouslen, originating in discordant policies in the Philippines; appeasement; and again the Atom Bomb, through the use of which we destroyed our moral position at home and abroad. Well documented -- but in the main, a rather personal statement of conolusions drawn from selected facts.

Pub Date: March 29th, 1950
Publisher: Harper