B. THE KOREAN WAR by Matthew Ridgway


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It is said that old soldiers never die--they merely write their memoirs. In General Ridgway's case, his book is not so much a military history as it is a description of General Ridgway in the Korean War. The General tersely documents the confusion and ill-preparedness that marked American planning both before and after the North Korean invasion. American foreign policy was a benign form of isolationism and interventionism. Korea came as the turning point in American political/military psychology and committed us to an unrestrained policy of intervention. General Ridgway, however, proves to be a rara avis as far as the military is concerned, who will give more than lip service to the proposition that war is a tool of diplomacy. His actions during the war demonstrate this, especially in regard to MacArthur whom he twice compares to Custer in his impetuosity and disregard of facts and commitments.... General Ridgway's book is likely to be discussed and debated particularly in his evaluation of air power in Asiatic fighting; he says that bombings have little military effect in the long run. The implications are obvious and the referral is Vietnam.... A book well worth reading.

Pub Date: Oct. 6th, 1967
Publisher: Doubleday