The Wonderfully Weird Order:

  • 2014

The Wonderfully Weird Order:

Exploring the Influences Behind the Yalu River Bridges Controversy and Truman’s Decision to Authorize the Bombing Campaign
Author:
Bryan Goldberg
Abstract:

Some historians have concluded that Truman's decision to allow a limited bombing of the Yalu Bridges during the Korean War stemmed from diplomatic concerns and fears of the Korean War begetting a larger world war. However, other influences on Truman have not been seriously considered. Upon a closer look, President Truman's decision to limit MacArthur's proposed bombing of the Yalu Bridges, yet partially overrule the Joint Chiefs of Staff and Department of State, resulted less from his stated diplomatic concerns and fears of widening the war than previously considered. Instead, Truman's decision resulted more from a combination of his long-standing deference to field commanders and fear of negative political consequences on the eve of the Congressional mid-term elections.