Reply To: Truman vs. MacArthur


I agree with Tom. The chief positive attribute of the American constitution is that the military has been subordinate to the civilians since the Revolution. No matter what proportion of the flag officers disapprove of the president, he’s in charge. Washington insisted on this principle during the Revolution and after, whether by telling British negotiators that they needed to go to Congress with their proposals, by resigning his office at the war’s end, by breaking up incipient mutinies, or by insisting that membership in the national Society of the Cincinnati not be hereditary. Whatever we may think of his performance as president, Washington remains America’s greatest man because of this overwhelmingly important legacy.