Friday, May 07, 2004

Dwight D. Eisenhower

Dwight D. Eisenhower This is a biography of General and President Eisenhower.

From the site:

Dwight David Eisenhower ( October 14 , 1890 - March 28 , 1969 ) American soldier and politician, was the 34th President of the United States ( 1953 - 1961 ) and supreme commander of the Allied forces in Europe during World War II .

Eisenhower was born in Denison, Texas , the third of David Jacob and Ida Elizabeth Stover Eisenhower's seven sons. The Eisenhower family was of German descent, but had lived in America since the 18th century. The family moved to Abilene, Kansas , in 1892 . Eisenhower graduated from Abilene High School in 1909 and he worked at Belle Springs Creamery from 1909 to 1911 .

Eisenhower married Mamie Geneva Doud (1896-1979), of Denver, Colorado on July 1 , 1916 . They had two children, Doud Dwight Eisenhower (1917-1921), and John Sheldon Doud Eisenhower (born 1922). John Eisenhower served in the United States Army , then became an author and served as U.S. Ambassador to Belgium . One of John Eisenhower's sons, David Eisenhower , married Richard Nixon 's daughter Julie in 1968 .

Military career

Eisenhower enrolled at the United States Military Academy , West Point, New York , in June, 1911 and graduated in 1915 . He served with the infantry until 1918 at various camps in Texas and Georgia . He then served with the Tank Corps from 1918 to 1922 at Camp Meade , Maryland and other places. He was promoted to Captain in 1917 and Major in 1920 . In 1922 he was assigned as executive officer to General Fox Conner in the Panama Canal Zone , where he served until 1924 . In 1925 and 1926 he attended the Command and General Staff School at Fort Leavenworth , Kansas , and then served as a battalion commander, at Fort Benning , Georgia , until 1927 .

Wednesday, May 05, 2004

Teaching about Vietnam and the Vietnam War

Teaching about Vietnam and the Vietnam War. This is a nice piece on the history of Vietnam and the Vietnam War. It includes advice for instructors on how to teach the subject.

From the site:

A high school senior recently told a reporter, "I keep hearing people say Central America is just like Vietnam. How am I supposed to know if Nicaragua is like Vietnam if I don't know what Vietnam is like?" Another student described his lack of knowledge of the Vietnam War and his fascination with it as the black hole of history. These responses reflect the widespread ignorance of students about a pivotal event in American history.

Our students were not born when the last helicopter lifted off the United States embassy rooftop in Saigon in 1975. Yet most of them have experienced myriad images, isolated facts, and emotional testimonials regarding Vietnam. But they lack systematic and detailed knowledge of a turning point in modern American history. If we want our students to understand many current foreign policy issues, they must be adequately informed about the war in Vietnam and how it has influenced our leaders and our culture. Given the importance of the Vietnam War in modern American history, it should be emphasized more than it is in the history curricula of schools.

REASONS FOR NEGLECT

Several factors have led to the brevity or absence of class time spent on teaching about Vietnam. These include: (1) superficial and often distorted textbook coverage, (2) time constraints, (3) lack of worthy supplementary instructional materials, and (4) the controversial nature of a still-emotional era of United States history.

Monday, May 03, 2004

The Realm of The Mongols

The Realm of The Mongols Large amount of information on Mongol society, history and culture.

From the site:

These pages have been created with the single purpose of providing information on a phenomenon whose nature and role in world history has largely been obfuscated and misrepresented. I speak about the history of the Mongol Empire, beginning from the fateful incident in the year 1206, when the Founder and Father of the Mongol nation, Temuchin, who took the name Chingis Khan, emerged as the "leader of all people living in felt tents." His investiture as supreme leader of the Mongols was to lay the groundwork for a profound change in the direction of world history.

What happened after 1206 is reasonably well understood at the academic/rational level. The invincible Mongolian hordes, under the leadership and tutelary power of Chingis Khan, overran most of the Asian and Eurasian land, and in their heyday, the Mongols never met an army they could not beat. They were incomparably superior, man for man, to what their formidable military opponents in China, Russia, Persia and Western Europe could muster. Their dedication, sense of purpose and endurance is simply matchless in human history, past and present. Most remarkable of all was the degree of solidarity and feeling of shared purpose that the Mongols evinced up to the death of their beloved leader in August 1227.

Significantly, when his biological descendants of much lesser stature succeeded him, the spiritual foundation eroded, as they began to abandon the teachings of Chingis, lost their sense of purpose and instead became attached to the allurements of this world. Material possessions, drink, and lewd women increasingly became the aims of the leaders, replacing what had been their spiritual foundation. This way the Mongols brought about their own downfall.