Letter from AMVETS
April 11, 1951
The Honorable Harry S. Truman
The White House
Dear Mr. President:
AMVETS support your painful decision to relieve General Douglas MacArthur of
his command on obvious grounds of repeated insubordination in violation of
basic American principles governing civil vs military authority.
AMVETS recognize, and believe the overwhelming majority of Americans recognize,
that the issue here is not whether General MacArthur is right or wrong or
whether administration policies are right or wrong. The issue clearly and
simply is whether the ultimate civil authority of the United States can
tolerate, no matter what the motives, actions in contempt of constitutional
lines of authority. Any lessening of civil power over military power must
inevitably lead away from democracy.
AMVETS are keenly aware of General MacArthur's greatness and his immense
contributions to his country as a military leader. But constitutional
principles are greater than any one individual.
We know your decision demanded coverage because of the many emotional factors
involved. We believe you had no other choice.
We hope, however, that you will speedily re-enunciate and re-affirm our
over-all and long-range policies in the Far East to help unify America and to
stabilize political opinion throughout the world. We pledge you our continued
support as Commander in Chief in the prosecution of the Korean war while
praying for the success of your efforts to achieve peace.
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