Cover image for Eisenhower decides to run : presidential politics and Cold War strategy
Eisenhower decides to run : presidential politics and Cold War strategy
Pickett, William B. (William Beatty), 1940-
Publication Information:
Chicago : Ivan R. Dee, 2000.
Physical Description:
xvii, 269 pages : illustrations ; 22 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
E816 .P53 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



Presenting the results of research into some of Eisenhower's recently discovered letters and diaries, Pickett (history, Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology, Terre Haute, Indiana) describes his bid for the presidency, showing that he was not the reluctant object of a presidential draft movement, as i

Author Notes

William B. Pickett is a professor of history at the Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology in Terre Haute, Indiana. He has been a Fulbright lecturer and has written extensively on Eisenhower's presidency. His books include a biography of Indiana senator Homer Capehart and Dwight David Eisenhower and American Power.

Reviews 2

Library Journal Review

This monograph covers the 1952 Republican Party presidential nomination, but its real topic is Ike's political reputation. Was he, as traditional biographers have presented him, the apolitical military man who succumbed to a presidential draft or a visionary political strategist, as claimed by recent revisionists like political scientist Fred I. Greenstein (The Hidden-Hand Presidency)? Pickett (history, Rose-Hulman Inst. of Technology; Dwight David Eisenhower and American Power) sides with the revisionists. In fact, the author goes so far as to argue that Ike violated army regulations to promote his presidential aspirations. Skeptics are likely to remain unconvinced. Even if he was interested in presidential politics because of his dislike for Douglas MacArthur and Robert Taft, Ike was primarily a modern military man who needed a mission; performing a duty rather than resolving public policy issues remained his primary motivation. To transform a military man into a latent political talent, Pickett would need to provide comparative data rather than a case study. He also ignores the roles of Earl Warren and Wayne l. Morse, who were progressive Republicans at that time. Nonetheless, this is a readable account that contrasts Ike with conservatives MacArthur and Taft. Recommended for specialized collections on Cold War presidents.DWilliam D. Pederson, Louisiana State Univ., Shreveport (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Choice Review

Pickett's monograph details Dwight Eisenhower's 1952 nomination for the presidency. Using manuscript as well as published materials, Pickett (Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology) clearly shows that Ike's draft was a carefully planned operation in which Eisenhower himself was involved. The prevailing notion has been that Eisenhower, the popular war hero, was totally naive about politics and reluctantly entered the political fray when the Republican Party nominated him. Throughout the 1940's, Eisenhower's correspondence reveals that he was approached about a presidential bid but refused to consider it. His attitude changed in 1950 and 1951 because of the Korean War and his belief in his ability to deal with the problems of the Cold War. Working with then Senator Henry Cabot Lodge, among others, Eisenhower fostered the image of a man who did not want or seek the office while working behind the scenes to defeat Senator Robert Taft for the nomination. Pickett has added to the revisionist thinking that Eisenhower was much smarter and more effective than many had previously thought. Upper-division undergraduates and above. A. Yarnell; Montana State University