OTD in History… June 27, 1950, President Truman orders American troops to fight in the Korean War

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OTD in History… June 27, 1950, President Truman orders American troops to fight in the Korean War

By Bonnie K. Goodman, BA, MLIS

Source: Communities Digital News

On this day in history, June 27, 1950, President Harry S. Truman gives a statement and orders the United States air and naval military troops to Democratic South Korea to defend them as part of a United Nations military effort after Communist North Korea invaded it two days prior on June 25, 1950, Korean time. After World War II Korea had been divided between North and South by the 38th parallel. Truman sent American troops under Gen. Douglas MacArthur, who would be Commander of the U.N. forces, 15 nations fighting against North Korea. Truman’s decision came after United Nations Security Council condemned North Korea’s invasion with a 9–0 vote on June 26 and supported the Democratic Republic of Korea. On June 28, the UN voted to use force against North Korea and June 30, Truman committed ground troops to the conflict. Congress did not pass a war resolution but did extend the draft and allowed the president to call up reservists.

Truman’s decision was the first time the American history a president would send troops to a foreign conflict without Congress passing a declaration of war. Truman noted he did not need to because speaking of Congress he said, “They are all with me.” As historian Larry Blomstedt indicates in his book, Truman, Congress, and Korea: The Politics of America’s First Undeclared War, explains the Koran War is “historically crucial. Korea began a trend of American presidents deploying significant numbers of troops overseas without obtaining a declaration of war from Congress.” The conflict increased the power of the president.

Sending troops was also part of the post-World War II strategy of “Containment” containing the spread of Communism in the world, and part of the 1947 Truman Doctrine of foreign policy having the US intervening in foreign conflicts that do not directly involve the country. As Truman stated to the public on June 27, “Communism has passed beyond the use of subversion to conquer independent nations and will now use armed invasion and war.” The front line of fighting Communism shifted from Europe to Asia. Truman declared that the spread of Communism in the strategic Korean peninsula was a threat to national security. The Korean War would last three years and for most veterans considered as the “forgotten war.” It was the first American conflict with no clear-cut victory or peace, only an armistice signed July 27, 1953, with 36,516 American troops killed in the war. The boundary line altered slightly with both sides gaining territory but a continued military presence was necessary.

Recently, nuclear tensions between North Korea and the US increased under President Donald Trump and North Korea leader Kim Jong-un. A result of the escalation and Trump’s bully diplomacy, North and Korea had a rapprochement and signed an agreement with the intention to make finally a peace agreement, 65 years after the armistice was signed. The US and North Korea are also making historic headway, with Trump becoming the first American president to meet with a North Korean leader. At their Singapore summit on June 12, the two leaders signed an agreement to denuclearize North Korea, a giant step towards finally ending the Korean War.

READ MORE

Blomstedt, Larry. Truman, Congress, and Korea: The Politics of America’s First Undeclared War. Lexington, Kentucky The University Press of Kentucky, 2016.

Brands, H W. The General Vs. the President: Macarthur and Truman at the Brink of Nuclear War. New York : Anchor Books, a division of Penguin Random House LLC, 2017.

Wainstock, Dennis. Truman, Macarthur, and the Korean War. New York, NY: Enigma Books, 2011.

Bonnie K. Goodman has a BA and MLIS from McGill University and has done graduate work in religion at Concordia University. She is a journalist, librarian, historian & editor, and a former Features Editor at the History News Network & reporter at Examiner.com where she covered politics, universities, religion and news. She has a dozen years experience in education & political journalism.

 

Statement by the President on the Situation in Korea
June 27, 1950

IN KOREA the Government forces, which were armed to prevent border raids and to preserve internal security, were attacked by invading forces from North Korea. The Security Council of the United Nations called upon the invading troops to cease hostilities and to withdraw to the 38th parallel. This they have not done, but on the contrary have pressed the attack. The Security Council called upon all members of the United Nations to render every assistance to the United Nations in the execution of this resolution. In these circumstances I have ordered United States air and sea forces to give the Korean Government troops cover and support.

The attack upon Korea makes it plain beyond all doubt that communism has passed beyond the use of subversion to conquer independent nations and will now use armed invasion and war. It has defied the orders of the Security Council of the United Nations issued to preserve international peace and security. In these circumstances the occupation of Formosa by Communist forces would be a direct threat to the security of the Pacific area and to United States forces performing their lawful and necessary functions in that area.

Accordingly I have ordered the 7th Fleet to prevent any attack on Formosa. As a corollary of this action I am calling upon the Chinese Government on Formosa to cease all air and sea operations against the mainland. The 7th Fleet will see that this is done. The determination of the future status of Formosa must await the restoration of security in the Pacific, a peace settlement with Japan, or consideration by the United Nations.

I have also directed that United States Forces in the Philippines be strengthened and that military assistance to the Philippine Government be accelerated.

I have similarly directed acceleration in the furnishing of military assistance to the forces of France and the Associated States in Indochina and the dispatch of a military mission to provide dose working relations with those forces.

I know that all members of the United Nations will consider carefully the consequences of this latest aggression in Korea in defiance of the Charter of the United Nations. A return to the rule of force in international affairs would have far-reaching effects. The United States will continue to uphold the rule of law.

I have instructed Ambassador Austin, as the representative of the United States to the Security Council, to report these steps to the Council.

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Full Text Obama Presidency July 27, 2013: President Barack Obama’s Speech at 60th Anniversary of the Korean War Armistice

POLITICAL TRANSCRIPTS

OBAMA PRESIDENCY & THE 113TH CONGRESS:

Remarks by the President at 60th Anniversary of the Korean War Armistice

National Korean War Veterans Memorial Washington, D.C.

Source: WH, 7-27-13

10:44 A.M. EDT

THE PRESIDENT:  Thank you so much.  (Applause.)  Thank you.  Please be seated.  Good morning.  Annyong haseyo.

Secretaries Hagel, Jewell and Shinseki; Admiral Winnefeld; General Jung; all our friends from the Republic of Korea, including the legendary General Paik Sun Yup; distinguished guests; and most of all, veterans of the Korean War and your families.  (Applause.)  To our veterans — many in your 80s, a few in your old uniforms — which still fit — (laughter) — let me just say you look outstanding.  And I would ask that all United States, Republic of Korea, and other veterans who fought  — I would ask those who can stand to please stand so that we can properly honor you here today.  (Applause.)

July 27th, 1953 — 60 years ago today.  In the village of Panmunjom, in a barren room, the generals picked up their pens and signed their names to the agreement spread before them.  That night, as the armistice took hold, the guns of war thundered no more.  Along the jagged front, men emerged from their muddy trenches.  A Marine raised his bugle and played taps.  And a soldier spoke for millions when he said, “Thank God it is over.”

In the days that followed, both sides pulled back, leaving a demilitarized zone between them.  Soldiers emptied their sandbags and tore down their bunkers.  Our POWs emerged from the camps.  Our troops boarded ships and steamed back across the ocean.  And describing the moment he passed under the Golden Gate Bridge, one of those soldiers wrote, “We suddenly knew we had survived the war, and we were home.”

Yet ask these veterans here today and many will tell you, compared to other wars, theirs was a different kind of homecoming.  Unlike the Second World War, Korea did not galvanize our country.  These veterans did not return to parades.  Unlike Vietnam, Korea did not tear at our country.  These veterans did not return to protests.  Among many Americans, tired of war, there was, it seemed, a desire to forget, to move on.  As one of these veterans recalls, “We just came home and took off our uniforms and went to work.  That was about it.”

You, our veterans of Korea, deserved better.  And down the decades, our nation has worked to right that wrong, including here, with this eternal memorial, where the measure of your sacrifice is enshrined for all time.  Because here in America, no war should ever be forgotten, and no veteran should ever be overlooked.  And after the armistice, a reporter wrote, “When men talk in some distant time with faint remembrance of the Korean War, the shining deeds will live.”  The shining deeds will live.

On this 60th anniversary, perhaps the highest tribute we can offer our veterans of Korea is to do what should have been done the day you come home.  In our hurried lives, let us pause.  Let us listen.  Let these veterans carry us back to the days of their youth, and let us be awed by their shining deeds.

Listen closely and hear the story of a generation — veterans of World War II recalled to duty.  Husbands kissing their wives goodbye yet again.  Young men — some just boys, 18, 19, 20 years old — leaving behind everyone they loved “to defend a country they never knew and a people they never met.”  Let’s never forget all the daughters who left home, especially our heroic nurses who saved so many.  Our women in Korea also served with honor.  They also gave their lives.  (Applause.)

Listen, and hear how these Americans faced down their fears and did their duty.  Clutching their rifles; hearing the bugles in the distance; knowing that waves of enemy fighters would soon be upon them.  In ships offshore, climbing down the ropes into the landing craft, knowing some of them would not leave that beach.  On the tarmacs and flight decks, taking off in their Corsairs and Sabres, knowing that they might not return to this earth.

Listen, and hear of their gallantry — often outnumbered and outgunned — in some of the most brutal combat in modern history. How they held the line at the Pusan Perimeter.  How they landed at Inchon and turned the tide of the war.  How, surrounded and freezing, they battled their way out of Chosin Reservoir.  And how they fought — foxhole by foxhole, mountain after mountain, day and night — at the Punchbowl and Heartbreak Ridge, Old Baldy and Pork Chop Hill.

Listen, and hear how perhaps the only thing worse than the enemy was the weather.  The searing heat, the choking dust of summer.  The deep snow and bitter cold of winter — so cold their weapons could jam; so cold their food would turn to ice.  And surely no one endured more than our POWs in those hellish camps, where the torment was unimaginable.  Our POWs from Korea are some of the strongest men our nation has ever produced, and today we honor them all — those who never came home and those who are here today.  (Applause.)

Listen to these veterans and you’ll also hear of the resilience of the human spirit.  There was compassion — starving prisoners who shared their food.  There was love — men who charged machine guns, and reached for grenades, so their brothers might live.  There was the dark humor of war — as when someone misunderstood the code name for mortar rounds — “Tootsie Rolls” — and then shipped our troops thousands of Tootsie Rolls —  candies.

And there was hope — as told in a letter home written by a soldier in the 7th Cavalry.  Marching through the snow and ice, something caught his eye — a young lieutenant up ahead, and from the muzzle of his rifle hung a pair of tiny baby booties, “swinging silently in the wind…like tiny bells.”  They were sent by the lieutenant’s wife, pregnant with their first child, and she promised to send ribbons — blue if a boy, pink if a girl.  But as the war ground on, those soldiers were scattered.  Until one day, on a Korean road, he spotted the lieutenant again.  “Swinging gaily in the first rays of the morning sun,” the soldier wrote, were those booties, “and fluttering below them was the brightest, bluest piece of ribbon I have ever seen.”

Six decades on, these moments may seem like faint remembrances of a distant time.  But for you — our Korea veterans and your families — I know it must feel sometimes just like just yesterday.  And on days such as this, you’re back there once more.  For Korea was the fire that helped to forge you.

As we listen to the story of your service, I say let us also learn, because your lives hold lessons for us today.  Korea taught us the perils when we fail to prepare.  After the Second World War, a rapid drawdown left our troops underequipped, so that in the early days of Korea, their rockets literally bounced off enemy tanks.  Today, as we end a decade of war and reorient our forces for the future, as we make hard choices at home, our allies and adversaries must know the United States of America will maintain the strongest military the world has ever known, bar none, always.  That is what we do.  (Applause.)

Korea taught us that, as a people, we are stronger when we stand as one.  On President Truman’s orders, our troops served together in integrated units.  And the heroism of African Americans in Korea — and Latinos and Asian Americans and Native Americans — advanced the idea:  If these Americans could live and work together over there, surely we could do the same thing here at home.  (Applause.)

Change came slowly.  And we continue our long journey toward a more perfect union.  But for the great strides we have made toward the ideals of equality and opportunity, we must give thanks to our Korean War veterans who helped point the way.

Korea reminds us that when we send our troops into battle, they deserve the support and gratitude of the American people — especially when they come home.  Today, let us remember that — right now — our sons and daughters continue to risk their lives, give their lives, in Afghanistan.  And as this war ends and we welcome them home, we will make it our mission to give them the respect and the care and the opportunities that they have earned. (Applause.)

And Korea reminds us that our obligations to our fallen and their families endure long after the battle ends.  To this day, 7,910 Americans are still missing from the Korean War.  And we will not stop working until we give these families a full accounting of their loved ones.  (Applause.)  Like Sergeant First Class William Robinson — 26 years old — missing for 63 years.  This week, in Indiantown Gap, Pennsylvania, the Robinsons will welcome their uncle home and finally lay him to rest — with full military honors.  (Applause.)

Freedom is not free.  And in Korea, no one paid a heavier price than those who gave all — 36,574 American patriots, and, among our allies, more than one million of our South Korean friends — soldiers and civilians.  That July day, when the fighting finally ended, not far from where it began, some suggested this sacrifice had been for naught, and they summed it up with a phrase — “die for a tie.”

It took many decades for this memorial to gain its rightful place on this great Mall where we tell our American story.  It has, perhaps, taken even longer to see clearly, and understand fully, the true legacy of your service.  But here, today, we can say with confidence that war was no tie.  Korea was a victory.  When 50 million South Koreans live in freedom — a vibrant democracy, one of the world’s most dynamic economies, in stark contrast to the repression and poverty of the North — that’s a victory; that’s your legacy.  (Applause.)

When our soldiers stand firm along the DMZ; when our South Korean friends can go about their lives, knowing that the commitment of the United States to the security of the Republic of Korea will never waver — that is a victory, and that is your legacy.

When our allies across the Asia Pacific know — as we have proven in Korea for 60 straight years — that the United States will remain a force for peace and security and prosperity –that’s a victory; that’s your legacy.

And for generations to come, when history recalls how free nations banded together in a long Cold War, and how we won that war, let it be said that Korea was the first battle — where freedom held its ground and free peoples refused to yield, that, too, is your victory, your legacy.

Most of all, your legacy burns brightest right here, in a grateful nation that reveres you; in the loving families that cherish you — like that young soldier with those baby booties swinging from his rifle.  Ever since the war, the story of that soldier has been passed among our Korean War vets.  Some of you may have heard it before.  And many may have wondered what became of that soldier.  Today, six decades later, we now know — because we found him.  His was Richard Shank, from St. Louis, Missouri.  For his valor in Korea he earned the Silver Star.  Yes, Dick survived the war.  He returned home.  He held his baby boy in his arms.  He was able to be a father to his son.

But this story doesn’t end there — because like so many of you, Dick continued to serve in uniform.  His son grew into a man, got married, had children of his own.  Those children are now adults themselves, scattered across the country.  And like so many American families, they still speak with pride of their grandfather’s service in Korea.

Today, Dick Shank lives in Gainesville, Florida, and I believe he’s watching us this morning.  He’s 84 years old, recovering from a recent fall while roller skating.  (Laughter.) “Life is short,” he says, “and I just keep on living it.”  And one of the ways he keeps living it is by meeting up every year with his buddies from Korea, and recalling the time they shared together in that fight which ended 60 years ago today.

Veterans of the Korean War — in the spring of your youth you learned how short and precious life can be.  And because of you, millions of people can keep on living it, in freedom and in peace.  Your lives are an inspiration.  Your service will never be forgotten.  You have the thanks of a grateful nation.  And your shining deeds will live — now and forever.

May God bless those who gave all in Korea.  May God bless you and your families.  May God bless the alliances that helped secure our prosperity and our security.  And may God continue to bless these United States of America.  Thank you very much.  (Applause.)

History Buzz: June 21, 28, 2010: Remebering the Korean War 60 Years Later

HISTORY BUZZ:

By Bonnie K. Goodman

Ms. Goodman is the Editor/Features Editor at HNN. She has a Masters in Library and Information Studies from McGill University, and has done graduate work in history at Concordia University.

POLITICAL HIGHLIGHTS:

IN FOCUS:

  • Nurse being kissed in iconic wartime picture dies, aged 91: Edith Shain was photographed by Alfred Eisenstaedt in Times Square in 1945 being kissed by a sailor – Guardian UK, 6-23-10

THIS WEEK IN HISTORY:

HISTORY NEWS:

  • AHA, OAH, and NCPH endorse new guidelines for tenure: Three national groups of historians — the American Historical Association, the National Council on Public History and the Organization of American Historians — have now all endorsed guidelines that suggest a new, broader approach to tenure when considering public historians. The joint guidelines are part of a growing movement in disciplines that have tended to base tenure decisions on traditional forms of scholarship (in this case the monograph) to broaden the way they judge contributions to a field…. – Inside Higher Ed (6-22-10)
  • Historical Associations Issue Recommendations about Rewarding Public History Work for Promotion and Tenure AHA Blog (6-21-10)
  • Robert B. Townsend: Recession Takes Toll on AHA Membership: The economic hard times rocking the discipline took their toll on the AHA this past year, as membership in the Association fell 7.4 percent from the year before. This erased gains made over the previous five years and dropped membership down to 13,946 active members…. – Robert B. Townsend at the AHA Blog (6-21-10)
  • Robert B. Townsend: Is There an E-book in Your Future? A Report from the University PressesRobert Townsend at the AHA Blog (6-21-10)

OP-EDs:

REVIEWS & FIRST CHAPTERS:

  • Book review: H.W. Brands reviews “Tocqueville’s Discovery of America,” by Leo Damrosch: Rather, the appeal of “Democracy in America” is that of any good coming-of-age story: We see the possibilities of youth struggling against the realities of adulthood, and even as we slide toward old age, we reimagine all that we might have been. Leo Damrosch, in the best book on this subject in 70 years, deftly depicts the fateful encounter between the young Tocqueville and adolescent America. WaPo, 6-25-10
  • Book review of Hugh Trevor-Roper’s “History and the Enlightenment”: In the half-century following World War II, there was no more admired British historian than Hugh Trevor-Roper (1914-2003)…. “History and the Enlightenment” is a posthumous collection. Editor John Robertson has gathered together Trevor-Roper’s reflections on historiography and the achievements of the 18th- and early 19th-century historians, starting with Pietro Giannone — whose “Civil History of Naples” inspired both Hume and Edward Gibbon — and ending with Jacob Burckhardt (“The Civilization of the Renaissance in Italy”)…. – WaPo, 6-23-10
  • Dominic Lieven: ‘War and Peace’: The Fact-Check: RUSSIA AGAINST NAPOLEON The True Story of the Campaigns of “War and Peace” Lieven’s account in “Russia Against Napoleon” could not be more different. He concentrates on the men who led the Russian Army to victory — the young Czar Alexander and his close advisers — and shows that they won because they got more things right than Napoleon did. They understood him better than he did them, and while Napoleon may have been a battle­field genius, Alexander showed greater diplomatic skill in bringing together the coalition that eventually defeated him. That was no easy matter, given the fear of the French that prevailed in the German lands, and the fear of Russian predominance as well…. – NYT, 6-20-10
  • Rabbi’s Biography Disturbs Followers: Mr. Heilman, a sociologist at Queens College, and Menachem Friedman, a professor emeritus at Bar-Ilan University in Israel, offer a view into his world in their new biography, “The Rebbe: The Life and Afterlife of Menachem Mendel Schneerson” (Princeton University Press). But they have provoked a growing chorus of complaints from people inside and outside Chabad with their characterization of the rebbe…. – NYT, 6-20-10

FEATURES:

  • Doris Kearns Goodwin: New Kennedy Docs Show Perseverance, FBI Relationship, Says GoodwinWPUR (Boston) (6-15-10)
  • Douglas Brinkley, Robert Dallek: Historians weigh in on released Kennedy FBI files: The late Senator Edward M. Kennedy lived under the constant threat of violent death, a burden he inherited from his slain brothers, according to FBI records released yesterday detailing hundreds of threats issued by hate groups or relayed by agency tipsters and police across the country…. – Boston Globe (6-15-10)
  • Joseph Persico, Lara Brown: Presidential historians (pre)assess Obama speech: …Before Obama’s first Oval Office address, historians were taking the measure of what might be possible for the president…. – NPR,org (6-15-10)

QUOTES:

  • Shen Zhihua, the director of the Shanghai-based Center for Cold War International History Studies and professor of history at East China Normal University: Frank Views from Chinese Historian About Korean War: The Korean War was started by Stalin, who wished to establish pro-Soviet government in the Korean Peninsula, and Kim Il-sung, who wanted unified Korea, a leading Chinese academic told the state-run media Thursday. – Chosun Ilbo (6-18-10)
  • Controversy in France over de Gaulle literature, Robert Paxton weighs in: “He’s a great classical stylist with a vigorous point of view, which is exactly what young people should be reading,” Paxton said in a telephone interview from Cluny, in the Burgundy region of France. “You can use the same critical powers on the writings of a politician as on a literary figure.”… Bloomberg News (6-18-10)
  • J.B. Shank: University of MN historian objects to Pawlenty comments on Daily Show: “Technophilic talk is a pernicious distraction,” he says, “because it allows for a certain kind of justification for not giving the university the money it needs to provide the kind of education it wants to provide.”… – DigitalBurg.com (6-17-10)
  • Jean-Pierre Azema: De Gaulle truth played down?: A LEADING World War II historian has warned against manipulating history as France this week commemorates 70 years since Charles de Gaulle made his stirring appeal to resist Nazism…. – The Straits Times (Singapore) (6-16-10)

INTERVIEWS:

  • Andrew Bacevich sits down with Salon on Gen. McChrystal’s ouster: Should Gen. McChrystal have been fired?
    I believe this matter has already been settled. My view is that he should not have been fired…. – Salon.com (6-23-10)

AWARDS &APPOINTMENTS:

  • Rick Atkinson wins prize for military writing: Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and historian Rick Atkinson has received a $100,000 award for military writing. Atkinson has been awarded the 2010 Pritzker Military Library Literature Award for Lifetime Achievement in Military Writing…. – AP, 6-21-10
  • U. of Tennessee Wins Grant to Digitize Newspapers: In two years, students, historians, and anyone else curious about nearly a century of history should have 100,000 pages of Tennessee newspapers at their fingertips. The University of Tennessee at Knoxville has received a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities to digitize local newspapers from 1836 to 1922…. – CHE (6-18-10)
  • Stimpson Prize for Feminist Scholarship awarded to Ellen Samuels: Professor Samuels’s award-winning essay, “Examining Millie and Christine McKoy: Where Enslavement and Enfreakment Meet,” is impressively interdisciplinary, combining historical analysis, visual culture studies, feminist theory, and critical race theory to explore representations of Millie and Christine McKoy, African American conjoined twins born into slavery in North Carolina in 1851. – Chicago Journals (6-13-10)

SPOTTED:

  • West Point gathering examines endings of US wars: American wars usually begin with a bang, yet it’s the endings that usually have long-lasting influences, a gathering of prominent military historians told West Point instructors who are training the next generation of Army officers…. – AP (6-21-10)

ANNOUNCEMENTS & EVENTS CALENDAR:

  • September 17-18, 2010 at Notre Dame University: Conference aims to bring medieval, early modern and Latin American historians together: An interdisciplinary conference to be held at the University of Notre Dame this fall is making a final call for papers to explore the issue surrounding similarities between late-medieval Iberia and its colonies in the New World. “From Iberian Kingdoms to Atlantic Empires: Spain, Portugal, and the New World, 1250-1700″ is being hosted by the university’s Nanovic Institute for European Studies and will take place on September 17-18, 2010. Medieval News, 4-29-10
  • Jeff Shesol to give Jackson Lecture at the Chautauqua Institution: Historian, presidential speechwriter and author Jeff Shesol will deliver Chautauqua Institution’s sixth annual Robert H. Jackson Lecture on the Supreme Court of the United States. Jeff Shesol will give the Jackson Lecture on Wednesday, August 18, 2010, at 4:00 p.m. in Chautauqua’s Hall of Philosophy…. – John Q. Barrett at the Jackson List (6-14-10)
  • Thousands of Studs Terkel interviews going online: The Library of Congress will digitize the Studs Terkel Oral History Archive, according to the agreement, while the museum will retain ownership of the roughly 5,500 interviews in the archive and the copyrights to the content. Project officials expect digitizing the collection to take more than two years…. – NYT, 5-13-10
  • Digital Southern Historical Collection: The 41,626 scans reproduce diaries, letters, business records, and photographs that provide a window into the lives of Americans in the South from the 18th through mid-20th centuries.

ON TV:

BEST SELLERS (NYT):

BOOKS COMING SOON:

  • Ruth Harris: Dreyfus: Politics, Emotion, and the Scandal of the Century (REV), (Hardcover), June 22, 2010
  • James Mauro: Twilight at the World of Tomorrow: Genius, Madness, Murder, and the 1939 World’s Fair on the Brink of War, (Hardcover), June 22, 2010.
  • William Marvel: The Great Task Remaining: The Third Year of Lincoln’s War, (Hardcover), June 22, 2010
  • Suzann Ledbetter: Shady Ladies: Nineteen Surprising and Rebellious American Women, (Hardcover), June 28, 2010.
  • Julie Flavell: When London Was Capital of America, (Hardcover), June 29, 2010
  • Donald P. Ryan: Beneath the Sands of Egypt: Adventures of an Unconventional Archaeologist, (Hardcover), June 29, 2010
  • Jane Brox: Brilliant: The Evolution of Artificial Light, (Hardcover), July 8, 2010.
  • Rudy Tomedi: General Matthew Ridgway, (Hardcover), July 30, 2010.
  • Richard Toye: Churchill’s Empire: The World That Made Him and the World He Made, (Hardcover), August 3, 2010.
  • Alexander Hamilton: The Federalist Papers, (Hardcover), August 16, 2010
  • Holger Hoock: Empires of the Imagination: Politics, War, and the Arts in the British World, 1750-1850, (Hardcover), September 1, 2010
  • Anna Whitelock: Mary Tudor: Princess, Bastard, Queen, (Hardcover), September 7, 2010
  • James L. Swanson: Bloody Crimes: The Chase for Jefferson Davis and the Death Pageant for Lincoln’s Corpse, (Hardcover), September 28, 2010
  • Timothy Snyder: The Red Prince: The Secret Lives of a Habsburg Archduke (First Trade Paper Edition), (Paperback), September 28, 2010
  • Ron Chernow: Washington: A Life, (Hardcover), October 5, 2010
  • George William Van Cleve: A Slaveholders’ Union: Slavery, Politics, and the Constitution in the Early American Republic, (Hardcover), October 1, 2010.
  • John Keegan: The American Civil War: A Military History, (Paperback), October 5, 2010
  • Bill Bryson: At Home: A Short History of Private Life, (Hardcover), October 5, 2010
  • Robert M. Poole: On Hallowed Ground: The Story of Arlington National Cemetery, (Paperback), October 26, 2010
  • Robert Leckie: Challenge for the Pacific: Guadalcanal: The Turning Point of the War, (Paperback), October 26, 2010
  • Manning Marable: Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention, (Hardcover), November 9, 2010
  • Elizabeth White: The Socialist Alternative to Bolshevik Russia: The Socialist Revolutionary Party, 1917-39, (Hardcover), November 10, 2010
  • Elizabeth White: The Socialist Alternative to Bolshevik Russia: The Socialist Revolutionary Party, 1917-39, (Hardcover), November 10, 2010
  • G. J. Barker-Benfield: Abigail and John Adams: The Americanization of Sensibility, (Hardcover), November 15, 2010
  • Edmund Morris: Colonel Roosevelt, (Hardcover), November 23, 2010
  • Michael Goldfarb: Emancipation: How Liberating Europe’s Jews from the Ghetto Led to Revolution and Renaissance, (Paperback), November 23, 2010

DEPARTED:

  • Retired Vanderbilt professor, Paul Hardacre, passes away: Paul Hoswell Hardacre, a retired Vanderbilt University professor noted for his expertise on the Stuart period of English history, died on April 10 in Pasadena, Calif., at the age of 94. The professor of history, emeritus, taught at Vanderbilt for 34 years… – InsideVandy.com (6-18-10)
  • Angela Gugliotta, Environmental Historian and Lecturer at the University of Chicago, 1963-2010: Angela Gugliotta, a beloved teacher of environmental history whose research challenged the categorical distinction between natural and social knowledge, died June 1 after a ten-year battle with breast cancer. She was 47… – University of Chicago (6-9-10)
  • Bruce Fraser, historian of Connecticut, dies at 63: Mr. Fraser, 63, executive director of the Connecticut Humanities Council since 1982, died Sunday after battling cancer for nearly a year. A compact, athletic, intense man with a Swiftian wit and Yankee work ethic, Mr. Fraser was a gifted historian as well as a skilled advocate, organizer and fundraiser. He built the humanities council into one of the largest and most effective such agencies in the country, and then used it, in the words of Connecticut Trust for Historic Preservation Executive Director Helen Higgins, “to transform Connecticut’s once sleepy heritage community into a vibrant industry.”… – Hartford Courant (6-16-10)

The Face-Off: Bob Bateman Vs. the Associated Press

HISTORY ARTICLES

HISTORY, NEWS & POLITICS

HNN, 9-09-04

The Face-Off: Bob Bateman Vs. the Associated Press

By Bonnie Goodman

Ms. Goodman is a graduate student at Concordia University and an HNN intern.

On Saturday, August 28, 2004, C-Span 2 Book TV presented a “Debate Over No Gun Ri” with AP Journalist Charles Hanley and historian Robert Bateman. Charles Hanley is the co-author of The Bridge at No Gun Ri: A Hidden Nightmare from the Korean War, and Robert L. Bateman is the author of No Gun Ri: A Military History of the Korean War Incident. The debate was moderated by freelance broadcast journalist, John Callaway, and held at the Pritzker Military Library in Chicago on July 20, 2004. In 1999, the Associated Press won the Pulitzer Prize for their investigative report on the massacre at No Gun Ri, which occurred in July 1950, the first year of the Korean War. Critics then charged that the AP journalists’ evidence was weak. One of those who doubted the AP account was historian Robert Bateman, who then published his own historically researched book on the topic.

The ensuing controversy should have resulted in a bitter debate between Hanley and Bateman, but their debate was rather tame in comparison to the moderator’s attacks on Bateman. Callaway showed a very noticeable bias against Bateman that was visible in the tone of his voice as well as the type of questions he asked Bateman. Callaway’s questions to Bateman resembled more a man on trial for the crimes at No Gun Ri rather than a debate about them. The attacks seem to focus on the fact that Bateman was using historical methods and documents in writing his book on No Gun Ri, and did not use journalistic methods, such as having gone to South Korea and interviewed the people involved as Hanley and the other AP journalists did to write their book.

There were distinct moments within the debate that Callaway seemed to try to corner Bateman. This was the case when Callaway asked Bateman why he did not go to South Korea, and when Bateman responded that it was because he did not have the funds that the AP journalists had in when they wrote their story. Callaway’s remark was on the verge of badgering Bateman, when he questioned Bateman’s motivation for writing a book which he did not have the resources to research fully. Later, Callaway read a passage taken from Bateman’s book which mentioned a story from Life Magazine, dated August 20, 1950. Callaway then accused Bateman that he believed every other story written on No Gun Ri, including the Life Magazine one, with the exception of the AP story.

Callaway seemed to show his preference for journalists, which gave the viewer the impression that this is because he himself is one. This preference gave Hanley a distinct advantage in the debate, and made Hanley and the Associate Press journalists appear as the victims of Bateman’s continued attacks against their credibility. Callaway said that he was “playing devil’s advocate,” but he was far more critical of Bateman than Hanley. In comparison Callaway showed a calmer demeanor when asking Hanley questions, and the questions were far less accusatory than those Callaway posed to Bateman.

Bateman and Hanley seemed to be quite civil to each other considering the ongoing heated debate in the media. There were only mild jabs at each other’s methodology and sources used when they wrote the No Gun Ri story. The only major insults that went back and forth were Bateman’s accusation that Hanley could not understand the military having never been in it, as well as the lack of documentary evidence in Hanley’s No Gun Ri account. Hanley’s accusation was that Bateman could not truly understand what happened at No Gun Ri because he never went to South Korea to investigate it. The debate rehashed many of the issues the two authors have already fought in print about. The debate ended in a stalemate, neither side giving an inch–very much like the Korean War itself..

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