even though there were plenty of red-blooded Americans itchingrnto take a crack at the Kaiser, the army preferred compulsionrnto patriotism.rnFrom another perspective, though, the July 4th tribute wasrnsymbolically appropriate. The nephew of Lincoln’s dictatorialrnSecretary of War, Edwin Stanton was an ideal choice for announcingrnimperial America’s arrival on the European continent.rnHis chief, General Pershing, had first acquired famernin the campaign against Geronimo, and he was later to commandrnAmerican forces against the Philippino insurgents whornpreferred not to take lessons in democracy from an occupyingrnarmy.rnFrom the very beginning. General Pershing had insistedrnupon an independent American command. The French openlyrncondescended to the Americans, whose troops were illtrainedrnand whose officers were not up to the logistical andrnstrategic demands of modern warfare. Acknowledging the obstaclesrnthat lay before him, Pershing nonetheless resisted everyrnmove to amalgamate American forces into a joint commandrnunder French authority. Indeed, the fear of foreign entanglementsrnwas still so much a part of the American character thatrnPresident Wilson never formally joined the alliance—we werernassociates rather than allies.rnMost Americans must have assumed that victory wouldrnmean withdrawal from Europe. The President had other ideas,rnand among his Fourteen Points was a proposal for collective securityrnin Europe. The Republicans shrank back in horror fromrnthe League of Nations and were able to recapture the WhiternHouse by promising an end to the experiment in commandrneconomy and a return to normalcy.rnTwenty years later a new German menace brought Americanrntroops back to Europe, this time under a “Supreme AlliedrnCommander,” Dwight Eisenhower. There are those whornsaid—and some who still say—that we could have sat outrnWorld War II: that it was a result of the vindictive peace termsrnimposed at Versailles; that nothing good could come of an alliancernthat included the master-butcher of the century; that thernwar that began as a crusade to liberate Poland ended by turningrnher over to the tender mercies of Joseph Stalin; that war wasrna godsend to the planners, socialists, and traitors who staffedrnthe New Deal. Once the shooting started, the arguments lostrntheir point, and by tfie time the shooting stopped, most of therngreat isolationists were either dead or in retirement.rnFor a brief period—roughly the five years between 1945rnand 1950—there was a political debate on America’s future rolernin Europe. The contest could be seen as a struggle betweenrntwo major parties: on the one hand, the dupes and traitors, suchrnas Henry Wallace, Harry Dexter White (the author of thernWorld Bank), and Alger Hiss; on the other hand stood the infantrncold warriors, Harry Truman, Arthur Vandenberg, andrnDean Acheson.rnIf Truman and Acheson were willing to be warriors, it wasrnonly cold warriors, and the administration refused to back uprnthe military men who were willing to fight for victory. Therernare people who want to believe that when Truman sackedrnMacArthur, it was a victory for the Gonstitution. Where in thernConstitution does it say that a President may commit Americanrntroops to an undeclared war, under the auspices of an internationalrnagency, without having victory as an object? IfrnMacArthur slipped in disobeying his Commander-in-Chief, herncould be defended on the logic of the Nuremberg Trials.rnKorea was an unconstitutional and immoral war in whichrnAmerican soldiers were slaughtered for some vague idea of containment,rnand the fault does not lie at the door of DouglasrnMacArthur but with the U.S. House that did not impeachrnHarry Truman.rn^ — y ^ t is time for Unclern^^/ Sam’s nephews tornf _ ^ ^ grow up and takernresponsibility for their own affairs.rnWe shall be lucky to save our ownrncountry from the ethnic and socialrnconflicts that are turning major citiesrninto miniature Bosnias.rnMeanwhile in Europe, General Lucius Clay was insistingrnthat a determined military resistance to the Berlin blockadernwould bring the Russians swiftly to their knees. But Trumanrnhad no taste for a real war, and his successors have, ever since,rnpreferred to fight with surrogates, to bomb Third World countries,rnand to fund insurrections that have cost untold lives inrnAfrica and Central America. By now, the very term “freedomrnfighter” ought to sicken an honest American, no matter whatrnhis politics.rnIf the hot warriors in uniform were a different breed from therncold warriors in striped pants, there is another party at thernother end of the spectrum, men who knew the Soviets for whatrnthey were but who refused to enlist in a global crusade, whetherrnhot or cold. The prototype for the pragmatists may have beenrnTruman’s Secretary of State, James F. Byrnes. Often regardedrnas an appeaser, Byrnes was a South Carolina conservative whornloathed everything he knew about communism. He had beenrna major figure in the Democratic Party, and many had assumedrnthat he would replace Henry Wallace as FDR’s VicernPresident. As it turned out, “Mr. Jimmie” was too conservativernfor the leftists who ran FDR and chose, instead, a harmless machinernpolitician from Missouri. Unlike Truman, Byrnes had arnmiird of his own, and even when conducting the most importantrnbusiness with the Russians, he kept his President in therndark.rnConsidering the President, how could he not? He hadrnknown Truman since the little haberdasher entered the Senate,rnand to know Harry was to despise or, if you were his friend, patronizernhim. Intelligent foreigners could not get over the factrnthat such a little man could be the leader of the most powerfulrnnation on earth. Evelyn Waugh, who did not know him,rnfound Truman “a wholly comic man,” and Malcolm Muggeridge,rnwho did, describes his reelection as a “really comicalrnturn of events. Thought of the little man, as I rememberedrnhim, so utterly asinine .. . and how inconceivably funny it wasrnthat he should have been voluntarily chosen, against enormousrnodds. . . .”rnJimmie Byrnes knew how to be tough on the U.S.S.R. with-rnMARCH 1994/13rnrnrn