Douglas MacArthur, 1880 - 1964
At Manila, Phillipine Islands on 2 August 1945. Naval Historical Center
Born: 26 January 1880, Little Rock, Arkansas
Died: 5 April 1964, Washington City
"Big Mac" was a soldier to the core: Not only was he the son of a highly-decorated general, he was actually born in a building that had been an arsenal. He moved with his family from one assignment to the next until he entered West Point in 1898 where he graduated first in his class and third in all-time achievement. He was a brilliant strategist in the Pacific Theater during World War II, with a few significant blunders, then was in charge of Japan and is responsible for rebuilding the economy and government. Back in the Army in time for Korea, his boldness ended up in rank insubordination, resulting in his being removed from his command by Harry S Truman in 1951. The public still loved him, he was allowed a farewell address to Congress and his ticker-tape parade involved 3,249 tons of paper dumped on Manhattan's Broadway.
Additional quotes from Wikiquote. Wikiquote entries are "sourced" and may include items longer than those included here, particularly for poets, lyricists, and dramatists.
Douglas MacArthur quotes:
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- A better world shall emerge based on faith and understanding. permalink
- A general is just as good or just as bad as the troops under his command make him. permalink
- A new era is upon us. Even the lesson of victory itself brings with it profound concern, both for our future security and the survival of civilization. The destructiveness of the war potential, through progressive advances in scientific discovery, has in fact now reached a point which revises the traditional concepts of war. permalink
radio broadcast from USS Missouri (2 September 1945)
- Americans never quit. permalink
as president of the US Olympics team, reported in The New York Times (9 August 1928)
- Build me a son, O Lord, who will be strong enough to know when he is weak, and brave enough to face himself when he is afraid, one who will be proud and unbending in honest defeat, and humble and gentle in victory. permalink
- By profession I am a soldier and take great pride in that fact, but I am also prouder, infinitely prouder to be a father. A soldier destroys in order to build; the father only builds, never destroys. permalink
- Could I have but a line a century hence crediting a contribution to the advance of peace, I would yield every honor which has been accorded by war. permalink
- Defensive strategy never has produced ultimate victory. permalink
- Duty, Honor, Country — those three hallowed words reverently dictate what you ought to be, what you can be, what you will be. They are your rallying point to build courage when courage seems to fail, to regain faith when there seems to be little cause for faith, to create hope when hope becomes forlorn. permalink
Sylvanus Thayer Award acceptance speech at West Point, New York (12 May 1962)
- Expect only 5% of an intelligence report to be accurate. The trick of a good commander is to isolate the 5%. permalink
- Found a little patched-up inn in the village of Bulson.... Proprietor had nothing but potatoes; but what a feast he laid before me. Served them in five different courses: potato soup, potato fricassee, potatoes creamed, potato salad, and finished with potato pie. It may be because I had not eaten for 36 hours, but that meal seems about the best I ever had. permalink
from his World War I diary
- Here are centered the hopes and aspirations and faith of the entire human race. I do not stand here as advocate for any partisan cause, for the issues are fundamental and reach quite beyond the realm of partisan consideration. They must be resolved on the highest plane of national interest if our course is to prove sound and our future protected. permalink
farewell address to Congress (19 April 1951)
- History fails to record a single precedent in which nations subject to moral decay have not passed into political and economic decline. There has been either a spiritual awakening to overcome the moral lapse, or a progressive deterioration leading to ultimate national disaster. permalink
- However horrible the incidents of war may be, the soldier who is called upon to offer and to give his life for his country is the noblest development of mankind. permalink
- I address you with neither rancor nor bitterness in the fading twilight of life, with but one purpose in mind: to serve my country. permalink
farewell address to Congress (19 April 1951)
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