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John M. Schofield and the Politics of…
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John M. Schofield and the Politics of Generalship (2006)

by Donald B. Connelly

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Civil-military relations have been a live issue in the United States over the last decade and using the career of this once-influential American officer is useful in shining light on the complications military command faces while trying to function in a politically charged environment. Besides being a significant commander of the American civil war, if of the second tier, Schofield is notable for generally handling political complications in an astute fashion and being a major player in the professionalization and reform of his service.

The biggest personal failing Schofield displayed is that he did not let his usually sound instincts come into play when handling the matter of the Johnson Whittaker Affair, where an African-American cadet at West Point was subjected to brutal hazing for his race and Schofield (as Superintendent of the Academy) failed to follow both the letter and the spirit of the law in dealing with the scandal. Even by the standards of the times Schofield was seen to be lacking from a professional and personal perspective and was lucky to rebuild his career, which turned out to be of great service to the Republic. ( )
  Shrike58 | Aug 22, 2013 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0807830070, Hardcover)

In the first full biography of Lieutenant General John McAllister Schofield (1831-1906), Donald Connelly examines the career of one of the leading commanders in the western theater during the Civil War and the role of politics in the formulation of military policy during both war and peace in the latter half of the nineteenth century.

Connelly relates how Schofield, as a department commander during the war, had to cope with contending political factions that sought to shape military and civil policies. Following the war, Schofield occupied every senior position in the army--including secretary of war and commanding general of the army--and became a leading champion of army reform and professionalism. He was the first senior officer to recognize that professionalism would come not from the separation of politics and the military but from the army's accommodation of politics and the often contentious American constitutional system.

Seen through the lens of Schofield's extensive military career, the history of American civil-military relations has seldom involved conflict between the military and civil authority, Connelly argues. The central question has never been whether to have civilian control but rather which civilians have a say in the formulation and execution of policy.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:11:33 -0400)

"In the first full biography of Lieutenant General John McAllister Schofield (1831-1906), Donald Connelly examines the career of one of the leading commanders in the western theater of the Civil War and the role of politics in the formulation of military policy in both war and peace in the latter half of the nineteenth century."--[book cover]… (more)

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