In this chapter on “Democracy, Eisenhower, and the War in Europe”, the thesis is that the United States won the war because of the men in its Army. The Army had the quality of teamwork and a special spirit. He also credits American democracy for this spirit because “no other army emphasizes democracy as we do” and because “democracies produce great armies”.
I thought that he proved his point well because so many young men volunteered to join the military were from families who had gone through the worst of the Great Depression. Even minorities who had been treated horribly (African Americans, Japanese-Americans, and Mexican Americans) were ready to fight.
Even Japanese-Americans, who were taken away from their homes and put into camps in the desert after Pearl Harbor, volunteered for the Army and fought in Italy and Southern France.
Dr. Ambrose seemed to be biased towards an optimistic view of the Unites States and may have looked over some things. Besides being “unified and fighting as a team”, there could also be other reasons that young men would have joined the army. For example, many Americans (including the minorities) were angry after the bombing of Pearl Harbor and wanted to do something for their country. But also, in cases like those of the Japanese-Americans in the camps, there could have been men wanting to work or to prove themselves, not necessarily doing something for their country.
Over all, I was convinced with what he was saying in this chapter and agreed with the point he was trying to get across, which was that democracy had a big part in making the United States Army great and helped us win the war. It did get a little annoying when he kept mentioning the spirit and teamwork that the American Army had, but much of that was true.
book Personal Reflections of an Historian.