As president, the former Supreme Commander of Allied Forces during World War II successfully guided the country out of war in Korea, through the apocalyptic threat of nuclear war with Russia, and into one of the greatest economic booms in world history. In this last address to the nation, Eisenhower 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. Baier explores the many ways these visionary words continue to resonate today; he also explains how Ike embodied the qualities of political leadership that the country is urgently hungering for at the present.
Seeking to prepare a new generation for power, Eisenhower intensely advised the forty-three-year-old Kennedy in the intervening time between the speech and the inauguration. Dwight Eisenhower left the public stage at the end of these three days in January 1961 having done more than perhaps any other modern American to set the nation "on our charted course toward permanent peace and human betterment." Despite their differences in party affiliation, President Kennedy would continue to seek his predecessor’s advice and counsel during his time in office. Five decades later, Baier’s Three Days in January illuminates how Eisenhower, an under-appreciated giant of U.S. history, still offers vital lessons for our own time.
About the Author
Catherine Whitney has written or collaborated on more than twenty-five books, including Framing a Life: A Family Memoir with Geraldine Ferraro and Guilty: The Collapse of Criminal Justice with the late Judge Harold J. Rothwax.
Bret Baier is the chief political anchor for Fox News Channel and the anchor and executive editor of Special Report with Bret Baier, seen five days a week on Fox News Channel. Before assuming the anchor role, Bret served as Chief White House Correspondent for Fox News Channel between 2006 and 2009. Prior to being named Chief White House Correspondent for Fox News Channel, Bret served as National Security Correspondent based at the Pentagon, reporting on military and national security affairs, as well as on defense, military policy and the intelligence community from 2001 to 2006. He reported from Iraq twelve times and Afghanistan thirteen times. In his career Bret has traveled the world with various administration dignitaries and military officials, reporting from seventy-four countries. He is the author of the New York Times bestsellers Three Days in Moscow: Ronald Reagan and the Fall of the Soviet Empire, Three Days in January: Dwight Eisenhower's Final Mission, and Special Heart: A Journey of Faith, Hope, Courage and Love. He lives with his family in Washington, DC.
Table of Contents
Preface to the Paperback Edition xiii
Introduction: Finding Ike xv
Prologue: The Visit 1
Part 1 The Setting
1 The Measure of Ike 15
2 Ike in Command 42
3 A Nonpolitician in the Political Arena 61
4 Ike's Hidden Card 84
Part 2 The Speech
5 Farewell in Black and White 117
6 Intimacy and Interdependence 131
7 The Hostile Landscape 154
8 Dust to Dust 183
9 The Military-Industrial Complex 195
Part 3 The Final Mission
10 An Unknowable Successor 213
11 The Day Before 235
12 The Passage 247
13 A Spring Day at Camp David 258
The Last Word: 2017 287
Appendix: Eisenhower's Farewell Address to the Nation 301
About the Author 351