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In a cover story for National Journal, Jonathan Rauch digs deep into the record of Dwight Eisenhower to find foreign policy lessons for today.

NEXT: Learning From Ike

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  1. It’s not too difficult to formulate a wise foreign policy. Just do the opposite of what the experts say should be done.

  2. Damn good article. I think I’m a realist, after reading this.

  3. Best line:

    Eisenhower’s staff secretary and closest aide, Gen. Andrew Goodpaster, once said of his boss, “He was an expert in finding reasons for not doing things.”

    Whereas today’s leaders are experts in finding reasons for doing anything they please.

  4. Our Ike – in Slytherin house! I always saw him as a Ravenclaw in Hufflepuff clothing. But then, these ex-doughboys had no time or patience for nonsense. I think he and Truman – another hard-headed realist – understood each other a lot better than they did some of the people who followed them.

  5. On minor fact that is omitted in this assessment is that, by leaving Mao alone, we let him loose to murder 60 million of his fellow Chinese and to bankroll the Khmer Rouge etc.

    The realist would counter “I don’t give a shit” and everyone else would say “that’s Mao’s fault and not mine”. Still…

  6. David Ross,

    And considering how much difficulty we had in keeping control of the freakin’ southern half of Korea, what action do you think Ike should have taken to liberate China?

  7. I’m surprised this thread hasn’t gotten more comments.

  8. Well that’s what you get when you sandwich it between an article on Hillary Clinton and one on the Virginia shootings. Not enough people like Ike I guess.

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