This book was originally published in 1952. The copy I have was reprinted in 1970. The front cover reads: America’s First Vietnam – the hidden History of the Korean War.
On the back cover there is a blurb by Stephen E. Ambrose – Professor of Maritime History at the Naval War College. “I. F. Stone is a great journalist, but more importantly he is an honest and courageous man. It took guts to publish this book in the McCarthy era. Today, millions are jumping on the bandwagon of damning our Asian policy – even president Nixon is climbing aboard. In 1952 Mr. Stone was a one man band. It is a pity that more Americans did not read and think about Hidden History at the time.”
Mr. Ambrose goes on to say in his introduction inside the book that “The Chinese never wanted the war and did not support the Koreans until MacArthur forced them to do so. The same was true for the Russians … MacArthur was the major, almost sole, reason the war did not end in late 1950 … Recent studies by the Rand Corporation surely an unimpeachable source come to almost identical conclusions … His (Stone’s) contention is that Dr. Rhee provoked the North Korean assault, with the active support of Chaing Kai-shek and the covert aid of MacArthur and Truman.”
Ambrose goes on to state that Truman needed a crisis in order to get funds to support NATO.
I. F. Stone in his preface states: “I have tried to bring as much of the hidden story to light as I could in order to put the people of the United States and the United Nations on guard ... I utilized material which could not be challenged by those who accept the official American government point of view ... I believe this book serves a threefold purpose. It is a case study in the cold war. It is also a study in war propaganda, in how to read newspapers and official documents in wartime. Emphasis, omission, and distortion rather than outright lying are the tools of the war propagandists and this book may help the reader to learn how to examine their output and – sift out the facts – for himself. Finally this book is what it purports to be, not “inside stuff” or keyhole revelations but the hidden history of the Korean War, the facts to be found in the official accounts themselves if texts are carefully examined and reports collated.”
If we accept the premise that the U.S. government had theoretically declared war against Russia in 1917 when the Russian army decided to walk off the battlefields of Europe and establish a “worker” state. And then add the point of view that it was the Free World Capitalists from the U.S. and elsewhere who financed Adolf Hitler with the intent of using Hitler and his Nazi State to attack and destroy Russia. And then we view the post war Marshall Plan and the establishment of NATO as further steps in isolating Russia as an enemy. And follow all this logic with the “Cold War” strategy to box Russia in militarily and economically, we have the foundations for this journalistic indictment.
We can also add to this animosity towards Russia on the part of the U.S. the present day dismantling of the Berlin wall followed by the collapse of the U.S.S.R leading to the American support of the new nation of Georgia and the consequent lack of financial support and/or aid to Mother Russia and the strongly unionized Poland and Mr. Stone’s point of view seems more than reasonable.
This entire attitude stems from the American Capitalist government’s strong aversion to the rights or advancement of labor organizations at home and abroad. It has become clear to me from my research of the American and world labor movement that from this country’s beginnings it has been at war with “workers” and the working man mentality. When and if one takes all of this into consideration the goals and intent of both MacArthur and Truman as pointed out elaborately and in detail in this book become more than understandable.
I feel that this book is accurate in all of its details with only one small flaw. As Mr. Ambrose also points out, North Korea did not really need to be “tricked” or lured into a belligerent attitude. Current day events point out clearly that North Korea has always had its problems when it comes to aggression.
But that one point made, I don’t think that fact diminishes the exceptional fact finding report conducted in this book by Mr. Stone.
General MacArthur comes off very, very bad in my estimation. He was not frightened of nuclear power, since the U.S. had the command of it at that moment. The idea that MacArthur was inciting the easily excitable North Koreans so that he could then suck in the Chinese followed by the Russians for a lopsided nuclear World War III seems truly frightening. Mr. Stone makes it very clear that it was MacArthur intention to eventually nuke China and Russia.
Truman did not want to nuke anybody but he did encourage MacArthur and a crisis. Truman used the Korean conflict in order to promote his domestic and foreign policy political objectives according to Stone.
Truman wanted the Marshall Plan and NATO defenses for Europe and continued wartime military investment at home to keep America out of a post war recession that could possibly give the Russians the upper hand economically and in the ideological battle for the hearts and minds of capitalists and communist everywhere, according to Stone.
From a Patriotic and purely American point of view, was this a proper course or strategy?
From my point of view, to encourage war, or even limited war, for political or economic objectives is not the proper course for a moral nation to take. To risk a nuclear war for ideological advantage is insane.
This book makes it much more understandable why Truman eventually fired MacArthur. I think that it is safe to say that Mr. Stone considers Mr. Truman an honest but not so wise president.
As I see this analysis of the Korean conflict I think that Mr. Stone’s major point is that this was a small incident that could have been resolved quickly and easily with a minimum of fighting, death and injury to either side. But because of MacArthur’s belligerent aggressive nature and Truman’s political, ideological and economic positioning there was a needless extension of hostilities.
Do I think this book is worth reading? I have just order two more of Mr. Stone’s works. I. F. Stone was a journalist recording, with super insights and amazing perspective, the news of his day. Today these works can be considered history – and great history at that. Mr. Stone was a radical. He calls himself a radical. If I. F. Stone is a radical, we need more radicals of his caliber today.
Books by Richard Edward Noble. Click on covers below for more info and purchasing instructions.
Classic Tragic Novel
Don't Laugh - This Could Have Been Your Life
Funny stories and some strange characters.
Monkey Dishes and Cocktail Fawks
My Harrowing days in the restaurant business. Great Read.
It's a Long Story
Long Short Fiction - Great stories!
Bloggin' Be My Life
"Bloggin' be My Life" contains a selection of some of my more popular Hobo Philosopher blogs.If you enjoy reading this blog, you should love Bloggin' Be My Life.
It's All About Love
It's All About Love is ... all about love. This is the 2nd book of poetry from The Bard From Chelmsford off Arlington. Every poem in this book comes with a prose introduction. If you enjoy poetry this is a simple choice. Have fun!
A Little Something
Traditional poetry from The Bard From Chelmsford Off Arlington with some poignant prose introductions. If you enjoy any type of poetry, you will enjoy this volume. Thanks.
Talking To Myself
This is my third book of poetry.
Bits and Pieces
The Hobo Philosopher - My first book using the Hobo Philosopher brand. Featuring a variety of writing styles and ideas. Look for the Thoughtful Hobo on the cover.
A Baker's Dozen
The Hobo Philosopher: My Second book of Fiction, Creative Non-Fiction and Short Stories. All varieties of short stories - lots of laughs!
Cat Point - and Them Dang Oyster People
Cat Point is the sequel to "The Eastpointer." Both books contain humorous tales about life in a fishing community on the Florida Panhandle. Lots of laughs.
Won 1st Place award for humor in 2007 from Florida Press Association. More wit, wisdom and humor from the yet to be world famous author, R.E. Noble
A Summer with Charlie - Lawrence
Fiction - Salisbury Beach, Lawrence, Mass. Featured in Merrimack Valley Magazine July /Aug. issue 2010
Travel, Humor, Commentary on migrant farm work and illegal immigration still very pertinent today.
"Just Hangin' Out Ma"
Thank God for the Street Corners of Lawrence, Mass. Anecdotes and humorous escapades about growing up in an industrial mill town in the 40s,50s and 60s.
This is the sequel to "Just Hangin' Out, Ma"
That Old Gang of Mine
This is # 3 in my Lawrence Hometown series. The series is about growing up in the 40's, 50's and 60's in an industrial mill town. Sorta like a Huck Finn goes to vist Uncle Ralph, the bus driver, who lives in a big, rundown city. Lots of fun.
Come On-A My House
This is # 4 in my Lawrence Hometown series.The old homested at 32 Chelmsford ST is pictured on the cover..
Down By The Old Mill Stream
# 5 in the Lawrence My Hometown series.
Standing on the Corner is # 6 in the lawrence My Hometown series.
The old Howard Playstead on Lawrence St.
Eat, Drink and Be Merry
# 7 in the Lawrence my Hometown series.
Honor Thy Father and Thy Mother
Classic tragic novel written from child's perspective. Deals with abuse, poverty, unemployment. Pulls no punches.
Noble Notes on Famous Folks
Humorous, satirical notes on everybody from Constantine to Bill Clinton. Inspiration: Willy Cuppy.
America on Strike
History - documented survey of labor strikes in America
Mein Kampf - An Analysis of Book One
Who are the American Nazis - the Liberals or the Conservatives?
MY NAME IS RICHARD EDWARD NOBLE. I AM A FREELANCE WRITER AND I HAVE PUBLISHED 12 BOOKS:"THE EASTPOINTER" - SELECTIONS FROM AWARD WINNING NEWSPAPER COLUMN - "A LITTLE SOMETHING" - POETRY WITH PROSE -"HONOR THY FATHER AND THY MOTHER" - A NOVEL ABOUT GROWING UP IN THE NEW ENGLAND MILL TOWN OF LAWRENCE, MASS, "HOBO-ING AMERICA" - A WORKINGMAN'S TOUR OF THE U.S.A. - "A SUMMER WITH CHARLIE" - THE STORY OF A YOUNG SAILOR'S LAST DAYS AT SALISBURY BEACH, "NOBLE NOTES ON FAMOUS FOLKS" - HUMOROUS ANECDOTES ON FAMOUS FOLKS IN HISTORY,
"AMERICA ON STRIKE" HISTORY BOOK - A SURVEY OF LABOR STRIKES IN AMERICA; "A BAKER'S DOZEN" A BOOK OF HUMOROUS SHORT STORIES; "JUST HANGIN' OUT, MA" - GROWING UP IN THE 40'S, 50'S AND 60'S IN LAWRENCE, MY HOMETOWN, "TENEMENT DWELLERS" - SEQUEL TO JUST HANGIN OUT, MA; MEIN KAMPF - ANALYSIS OF BOOK ONE - HISTORY. CAT POINT - AND THEM DANG OYSTER PEOPLE - SEQUEL TO THE EASTPOINTER
All 12 BOOKS ARE AVAILABLE ON AMAZON.COM, BARNES AND NOBLE AND OTHER INTERNET SOURCES OR FROM NOBLE PUBLISHING. ALL 12 OF MY BOOKS ARE NOW ON KINDLE AT BARGAIN PRICES TOO. IF YOU WOULD LIKE MORE INFORMATION ABOUT DISCOUNTS AND SPECIAL OFFERS E-MAIL ME. MY EMAIL IS ON MY PROFILE PAGE.