Truman - Domestic policies Truman's domestic policies as president took far less of his time, and proved far less successful, than his foreign policies. Here also he dealt with three major issues: He managed well with two of these domestic matters.
Truman - Foreign policies When Harry Truman took the oath of office that evening at 7: He knew that the president's health was deteriorating, but the moment was astonishing. The next day he told a group of newspapermen that he felt as if "the moon, the stars, and all the planets" had fallen upon him, and he asked them to pray for him.
This remark, so expressive of his rural Baptist background, was widely quoted. Privately, Truman doubted if they knew how to pray for him. From such remarks people concluded he was an ordinary individual who happened to become president.
But he was hardly an ordinary man.
Few, if any, leaders in Washington knew more about domestic American politics; the whole of his personal experience had made him a political master.
Truman's only obvious lack of qualification for the presidency was his ignorance of international affairs, which were to occupy most of his time during his presidency.
It is a curious fact, not often noticed, that Truman's quickness in learning about foreign affairs—he made errors in foreign policy in his first year of the presidency, but not many—may have been attributable to his knowledge of domestic politics.
Truman in retirement ruminated about the qualities he so desperately needed upon entering the presidency after virtually no preparation by the secretive and otherwise absentminded Roosevelt, who as Truman's assistant Clark Clifford once said thought he would live forever.
The president of — concluded that if a politician knows American domestic politics he can learn quickly about foreign relations. It does stand to reason that if a president, out of long experience, senses what the American people want, he can advance those desires internationally by relying, as Truman did from the outset, upon the negotiating abilities of the Department of State.
The first issue of foreign policy that Truman confronted was the decision to use nuclear weapons against Japan. No decision of his presidency has drawn so much criticism as the dropping of atomic bombs on Hiroshima 6 August and Nagasaki 9 August. The question is whether he could have done anything else—that is, whether he could have delayed use of the bombs by opting for a demonstration of their immense power or refused to employ what General Dwight D.
Eisenhower described many years after its employment as an inhuman weapon. Truman knew about the bomb before he became president. When he was chairman of the investigating committee his investigators had reported on the huge expenditures at Oak Ridge, Tennessee, and at Hanford, Washington, the two principal production sites for uranium and plutonium.
When he and Roosevelt lunched together under a magnolia on the White House lawn in Augustjust before the vice presidential candidate went out to campaign, the president told him the secret.
At that time the bomb had not been tested. After he entered the presidency, everything moved rapidly. When, on 16 Julyscientists tested a plutonium device only enough U was available for a single bomb, so they could not test the uranium weaponthey expected a low yield, equal to —1, tons of TNT, and less effective explosive power because everything would be in a single war-head instead of many small bombs.
At the very moment of testing, Truman and other high administration officials had just reached the Berlin suburb of Babelsberg in preparation for a Big Three conference that opened next day at Potsdam and lasted until 2 August; the president had no time to think much about a plutonium bomb that he now realized equaled 20, tons of TNT.
At Potsdam the president spent two weeks in complicated discussion about Germany's occupation and the payment of reparations; the government and borders of Poland; the opening to all commerce of Europe's principal waterways; and a special declaration by the United States, Britain, and China the Soviet Union did not take part because it had not yet entered the Far Eastern war warning Japan in general terms to make peace with the Allies.
With the bomb available, and the president at Potsdam, it was necessary to make a decision, and Truman chose to use the new weapon. One reason for his decision was his feeling, and that of virtually all of his countrymen at the time, that the Japanese military—and behind it the Japanese government—did not know how to wage civilized war.
The Japanese army not merely had fought well in its campaigns, whether in offense or defense, but it had fought in bestial fashion. The first evidence had appeared in the sack of Nanking inin which at leastChinese, soldiers and civilians alike, were slaughtered.
The attack on Pearl Harbor had infuriated the American people, and there had followed the Bataan death march, a terrible affair.
The small-scale attack of American bombing planes on Tokyo and other cities in was followed by another bloodbath ofor so deaths in China of anyone and everyone suspected of harboring American fliers.
The Japanese defense of Manila against the attacking U. Army in may well have added anothermainly civilian deaths. The same number of American and Allied prisoners were in the hands of the Japanese army and, as it turned out, would have been slaughtered if the United States had invaded the Japanese home islands.The Cold War ended when the Soviet government collapsed in A "war of words and threats" between the US and USSR; it was a political and economic stuggle between these nations that was never realized on the battlefield.
Throughout the Truman and Eisenhower presidencies, the domestic news media became part of the United States Government's propaganda scheme, despite claims that the American public would be exempt from such propagandization.
The strategizing of both administrations . Vaughan also was friendly with a few individuals who procured federal contracts for a fee of 5 percent. The term "fivepercenter" became a political epithet. General Vaughan was not transferred but remained in the White House for Truman's entire administration.
Jun 27, · Eisenhower expressed his understanding that the briefing of Stevenson had taken only a very few minutes but underscored that, "To the political mind it looked like the outgoing Administration was canvassing all its resources in order to support Stevenson's election." The General went on to stress the importance of doing what is right, recalling the challenges he and Smith had faced together in .
Foreign Policy under President Eisenhower.
As Supreme Allied Commander in Europe during the war, President Eisenhower had a well-earned reputation for staff work and organization. May, Ann Mari, "President Eisenhower, Economic Policy, and the Presidential Election" (). election years during the administrations of Harry Truman, John Kennedy, Lyndon Johnson, Richard Nixon, and Gerald Ford, it de- OVERVIEW OF FISCAL POLICY IN THE EISENHOWER YEARS.