Dwight D. Eisenhower

Dwight D. Eisenhower

Dwight D. Eisenhower

This article is about a American officer in World War II. He took part in Operation Torch, Battle of Normandy and so on.

Dwight David “Ike” Eisenhower (14 October, 1890 in Denison, Texas, 28 March, 1969 in Washington DC) was the 34th President of the United States (1953 to 1961) and the supreme commander of the Allied forces in Europe during the Second World War.

Eisenhower was born in Denison, Texas, the third child of Mr. and Mrs. David Jacob Eisenhower and Ida Elizabeth Stover, the ancestor of Hans Nicholas Eisenhauer (later Eisenhower), who came from Karl Brunn in Saarland and was located with his family in 1741 in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. In 1892, his family moved to Abilene, Kansas, where he went in 1909 to the Abilene High School. He had three brothers, Earl, Edgar, and Milton.

On 11 July 1916, he married Mamie Geneva Doud (1896 to 1979), with whom he had two sons. The older, Doud Dwight Eisenhower (1917 to 1921), died young of scarlet fever. The younger, John Sheldon Doud Eisenhower (born in 1922), was a high-ranking military and U.S. Ambassador to Belgium.

On 14 June, 1911, he joined the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, from which he made his diploma in 1915. During this time, he fell by more unethical behavior than by special diligence. On 22 September, 1915, he was appointed as Second Lieutenant. From 1915 to 1918, he served in the infantry and in 1916 was appointed to First Lieutenant and in 1917 promoted to Captain. He reached in that time the brevet rank of a Lieutenant Colonel in the National Army and served as one of the main instructors of the young U.S. armored troops. Shortly after the First World War, Eisenhower was known by his thoughts to cross the North American continent with modern mechanized units. During this period, he also completed a friendship with the later promoted to General George S. Patton. In 1920, Eisenhower was promoted to Major. From 1922 to 1924, he served as Executive Officer, Fox Conner in the Panama Canal Zone. From 1925 to 1926, he attended the Command and General Staff College and served from 1929 to 1933 in the War Department. From 1933 to 1935, he was “Chief Military Aide” to General Douglas Mac Arthur, the Chief of Staff of the Army, whom he accompanied to the Philippines then. In 1936, he was promoted to lieutenant colonel. In 1941, he was chief of staff of the 3rd U.S. Army in Texas and was promoted to Brigadier General.

After the U.S. entered the war in December 1941, he was appointed as General Staff in Washington, where he led as Chief of War Plans Division (as: strategic planning department) and was active as Assistant Chief of Staff. In June 1942, he became the head of the American headquarters in Europe (ETOUSA), also in August the Allied Forces Headquarters Chief and therefore to the American landings in North Africa (the Operation Torch). In February 1943, during the Tunisia campaign, he was promoted to four-star general. This operation came through the high casualties among American troops under fire. Eisenhower was then the commander of the Allied troops at the landing on Sicily and the Italian mainland. On 24 December, 1943, he was appointed as the commander of the Allied forces in North West Europe (appointed as the Supreme Commander of the Allied Expeditionary Force). As such, he directed his most important military action, the landing of the Allied troops in Normandy (the Operation Overlord), and the Allied advance into Germany. On 20 December, 1944, he was appointed as General of the Army and resisted the German Ardennes offensive, while he took into account tensions with France over the defense of a second German offensive.

Since 1942, Eisenhower’s secretary and an Irish chauffeur, Kay Summersby, whose career has been funded by Eisenhower and was later a member of his staff. There are indications that the two were not only friends but also lovers and Eisenhower considered preferring to divorce with his wife. The reliability of this evidence is controversial.

In 1948, he was replaced by General Omar N. Bradley as the CSA and took over the position of President of Columbia University. In 1950, Eisenhower was the first Supreme Allied Commander in Europe, and thus the supreme commander of NATO forces in Europe. On 31 May, 1952, he completed his military service in order to prepare for the candidacy for U.S. president.

On the advice of General Matthew B. Ridgway, Eisenhower resisted entreaties, on the side of the French in Indochina to intervene. He signed contracts with the defense of Korea and Taiwan and was involved in diplomatic relations with Cuba. He also promoted the abolition of racial segregation in schools.

Eisenhower declined the offer because he did not want to be a president. In 1952, he was back on the presidential campaign approached, but this time by the Democrats and Republicans. He again refused, because he himself is not a politician held.

He changed his mind when the whole country “I-Like-Ike” clubs (Engl. “I like Ike”) sprang up. Eisenhower really was not political and was not a member of either party.  He let the Republicans nominate, because he believed in a two-party system and it has been over 20 years, no Republican president had given more.

During his election campaign, he called his rival Adlai Stevenson never by name, but mostly criticized Truman’s policies, particularly that of the American president. This strategy worked, he was with 442 electoral votes to the president elected, Stevenson received 89.

He received both the Democratic and the Republican votes, because he pursued a policy of middle way. That means he was a moderate Republican who also pursued democratic aspects. With this method, he was able, despite the Democratic majority in the Senate, to govern well and was very popular during his term, so that it is in the 1956 presidential election that he could once again prevail against Stevenson. The most important domestic policy decisions should be the construction of the motorway network, and he initiated creation of NASA.

The eponymous doctrine modifies the containment policy of his predecessor, Truman, because the far more defensive containment plans against Stalinist expansionism now should be replaced possibly by the aggressive policy of rollback.

A statue of Eisenhower in the National Statuary Hall Collection is established. The State of Kansas has selected him as one of two historical figures that are exhibited there. In 1977, the aircraft carrier was USS Dwight D. Eisenhower named after him.

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