Three Days in January: Dwight Eisenhower's Final Mission

Three Days in January: Dwight Eisenhower's Final Mission

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Overview

The blockbuster #1 national bestseller

Bret Baier, the Chief Political Anchor for Fox News Channel and the Anchor and Executive Editor of Special Report with Bret Baier, illuminates the extraordinary yet underappreciated presidency of Dwight Eisenhower by taking readers into Ike’s last days in power.

“Magnificently rendered. … Destined to take its place as not only one of the masterworks on Eisenhower, but as one of the classics of presidential history. … Impeccably researched, the book is nothing short of extraordinary. What a triumph!”—JAY WINIK, New York Times bestselling author of April 1865 and 1944

In Three Days in January, Bret Baier masterfully casts the period between Eisenhower’s now-prophetic farewell address on the evening of January 17, 1961, and Kennedy’s inauguration on the afternoon of January 20 as the closing act of one of modern America’s greatest leaders—during which Eisenhower urgently sought to prepare both the country and the next president for the challenges ahead.

Those three days in January 1961, Baier shows, were the culmination of a lifetime of service that took Ike from rural Kansas to West Point, to the battlefields of World War II, and finally to the Oval Office. When he left the White House, Dwight Eisenhower had done more than perhaps any other modern American to set the nation, in his words, “on our charted course toward permanent peace and human betterment.”

On January 17, Eisenhower spoke to the nation in one of the most remarkable farewell speeches in U.S. history. Ike looked to the future, warning Americans against the dangers of elevating partisanship above national interest, excessive government budgets (particularly deficit spending), the expansion of the military-industrial complex, and the creeping political power of special interests. Seeking to ready a new generation for power, Eisenhower intensely advised the forty-three-year-old Kennedy before the inauguration.

Baier also reveals how Eisenhower’s two terms changed America forever for the better, and demonstrates how today Ike offers us the model of principled leadership that polls say is so missing in politics. Three Days in January forever makes clear that Eisenhower, an often forgotten giant of U.S. history, still offers vital lessons for our own time and stands as a lasting example of political leadership at its most effective and honorable.

 

Editorial Reviews

U.S. Senator Pat Roberts

Superb. ... A quintessential American story of transcending dignity and success, of personal humility and enormous self-confidence, and unique achievements of which all Americans can be proud. ... Many have tried to assess Ike. Few succeed. Baier does.

The Costco Connection

Vital lessons for our time. ... Powerful and enlightening, Three Days in January sheds light on a little-known Eisenhower.

JAY WINIK

Magnificently rendered, Bret Baier’s Three Days in January is destined to take its place as not only one of the masterworks on Eisenhower, but as one of the classics of presidential history. Impeccably researched, the book is nothing short of extraordinary. What a triumph!

CLARENCE PAGE

Bret Baier has written a great book about a great president ... and the lessons in leadership that ‘Ike’ offers to today’s era of polarization and gridlock.

Susan Eisenhower

Captures the essence of Ike’s leadership style. Through stories and the keen observations at the time, Baier makes Ike’s world view and philosophy come to life. Three Days in January is a great read.

DAVID EISENHOWER

Brilliantly captures the drama of January 1961. ... Three Days in January is the BEST book on Eisenhower to appear in a very long time.

MICHAEL BESCHLOSS

A valuable contribution to our appreciation of Ike, describing some of his most important qualities of character, wisdom, and leadership, which are so needed in the public figures of our own era.

Douglas Brinkley

Bret Baier’s Three Days in January brilliantly illuminates the genius and intrigue behind Eisenhower’s historic Farewell Address. Written with verve and deeply researched, Baier ably dissects fact from myth. A landmark achievement in U.S. presidential history.

Tom Brokaw

Bret Baier has given history a great gift: a riveting account of Dwight Eisenhower’s determination to call on his vast experience to prepare America for the perils of the new war—the cold war.

SUSAN EISENHOWER

Captures the essence of Ike’s leadership style. Through stories and the keen observations at the time, Baier makes Ike’s world view and philosophy come to life. Three Days in January is a great read.

DOUGLAS BRINKLEY

Bret Baier’s Three Days in January brilliantly illuminates the genius and intrigue behind Eisenhower’s historic Farewell Address. Written with verve and deeply researched, Baier ably dissects fact from myth. A landmark achievement in U.S. presidential history.

TOM BROKAW

Bret Baier has given history a great gift: a riveting account of Dwight Eisenhower’s determination to call on his vast experience to prepare America for the perils of the new war—the cold war.

Clarence Page

Bret Baier has written a great book about a great president... and the lessons in leadership that ‘Ike’ offers to today’s era of polarization and gridlock.

Michael Beschloss

A valuable contribution to our appreciation of Ike, describing some of his most important qualities of character, wisdom, and leadership, which are so needed in the public figures of our own era.

David Eisenhower

Three Days in January is the BEST book on Eisenhower — and the best book written about a presidential speech — to appear in a very long time.

Library Journal

02/01/2017
Using the 34th U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower's (1890–1969) farewell address to the nation as a launching point for each chapter, this debut by Baier (Fox News Channel chief political anchor & former White House correspondent), with writer Whitney (The Calling), covers the general-turned-president's life and legacy. Baier offers a nonchronological narrative, combining biography with accounts of Eisenhower's most famous actions and decisions, effectively explaining how this transfer of power demonstrated the evolution of a changing American culture and mind set. Overall, this book tends to be laudatory of Eisenhower but not overly so; Baier provides readers who are unfamiliar with Eisenhower a thorough overview of his life, career, and the transitional period between presidents. While certainly packed with wonderful information, at times the format tends to be choppy and the writing somewhat stilted. Nevertheless, this account is well researched and shines when providing comparisons between Eisenhower and his successor John F. Kennedy. Boasting more than 20 pages of citations, many from primary sources, the appendix is rounded out with a full transcription of Eisenhower's final speech before becoming a private citizen. VERDICT Recommended for readers interested in presidential history; the history of World War II, the Cold War, or U.S. history; and fans of biographies.—Benjamin Brudner, Curry Coll. Lib., Milton, MA

Kirkus Reviews

2016-11-24
A sobering return to Dwight Eisenhower's farewell address, arriving just before our own moment of uncertain presidential transition.Eisenhower was a paradox: a former supreme commander devoted to peace who managed to keep the country out of war for eight years and left a haunting warning in his final televised speech on Jan. 17, 1961, that the United States had become a "permanent war-based industry." With co-author Whitney, Fox News host Baier (Special Heart: A Journey of Faith, Hope, Courage and Love, 2014, etc.) brings new relevance to Eisenhower's parting message to the young, relatively inexperienced new president, John F. Kennedy. The author explores Eisenhower's last days in office, especially his sense of needing to prepare JFK for the "fate of the civilized world" and brace him against the military-driven mindset. Unlike his relations with his own predecessor, Harry Truman, which were strained and chilly, the World War II hero came around to respecting the glamorous young senator despite their vastly different backgrounds and his inglorious defeat of Richard Nixon. In the 1960 campaign, Kennedy had run on the "missile gap" between the U.S. and Soviet Union—the Soviets had launched the world's first artificial satellite—which Eisenhower knew was "a clever, yet devious, tactic." It was also misleading, since both countries had enough nuclear weapons to leave the world "a moonscape of radioactive ash." This was Eisenhower's message in his parting address, which is included in its entirety in an appendix: that industry had taken over the military; that bright retiring military people had gravitated to aerospace and other related industries; and that massive federal funding outlays were being granted for scientific-military research. As Baier notes, his speech warning of "unwarranted influence…by the military-industrial complex" proved enormously prescient even though it was not widely reported on at the time. Kennedy would learn this lesson quickly in the Bay of Pigs fiasco. A focused and timely study of Eisenhower's significant speech and the sticky transition to JFK's inherited new world.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780062569066
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 01/10/2017
Series: Three Days Series
Sold by: HARPERCOLLINS
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 368
Sales rank: 59,898
File size: 23 MB
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