Chief of Staff Choices 1939?

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rcocean
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Re: Chief of Staff Choices 1939?

Post by rcocean » 21 May 2021 15:42

Yes, you're right. MacArthur RETIRED, and as a former chief of staff was technically kept on the roles so when he got recalled he came back as a Major General. But whether he quit or retired, he was no longer in a command position and had zero DIRECT influence on USA Defense policy in the Philippines. His reason for Retirement was quite simple. He'd taken the Filipino Army job on a suggestion from FDR, who promised to waive the usual 2 year rotation policy. In effect, Mac was promised he could stay in the Philippines till 1940. FDR also promised (verbally) MAC the High Commissioner job. As stated in D. Clayton James' biography MAC would never have gone to the Philippines in 1935, if he knew he'd be transferred back to a Corps command in 1937.

That FDR broke his promises to MacArthur isn't to be wondered at. FDR had a habit of promising 2 or 3 people the same job, or telling someone "You're my guy" and then forgetting them or even firing them. Getting back to the Filipino army, the entire budget for the Army varied from $8-$12 million per year from 1937-1940. By Comparison the USA army budget for 1938 was $432 million. That's for an army of approximately 150,000 men with no modern tanks, and still using weapons left over from WW1.

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Re: Chief of Staff Choices 1939?

Post by Carl Schwamberger » 21 May 2021 16:51

rcocean wrote:
21 May 2021 15:42
... Getting back to the Filipino army, the entire budget for the Army varied from $8-$12 million per year from 1937-1940. By Comparison the USA army budget for 1938 was $432 million. That's for an army of approximately 150,000 men with no modern tanks, and still using weapons left over from WW1.
Is that separate from the Federal portion of the National Guard training/maintenance costs, the Reserve Officer Corps costs, sundry Quartermaster Corps budget items that were seen as 'separate' for political reasons, or the whole package? I also understand that out of that 432 millions a chunk was separated in the budget as PI defense but paying the Regular Army.

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Re: Chief of Staff Choices 1939?

Post by Carl Schwamberger » 21 May 2021 16:54

Delta Tank wrote:
21 May 2021 13:51
... When I was in the US Army, a senior officer got into some trouble, so the offer was Courts Martial or resignation. He took resignation, the way I understood it he forfeited his retirement pay and all other benefits from his service.

Mike
Only one? Circa 1977 I recall a senior Admiral getting his ass court martialed for taking bribes from the food industry. The USMC chow improved somewhat in subsequent years.

rcocean
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Re: Chief of Staff Choices 1939?

Post by rcocean » 21 May 2021 21:08

Hello Carl. Not sure this what you're looking for but the $8-$12 million is for the Filipino army. This has nothing to do with the War Department expenditures for the USA army in the Philippines. No $ were provided for the training ROTC officers for the Filipino Army. In fact, this became a matter of contention between MacArthur and the Filipino President in 1939 (See Eisenhower Prewar Diary and selected papers edited by David Eisenhower).

This is one reason why "Mobilizing" the Filipino army in the fall of 1940, was so important. It allowed the USA to start paying the costs for training, supplies, etc. For example, obsolete 75mm guns, Enfield Rifles, and stokes mortars were sold at cost and "Loaned" (and secured by a $6 million) to the Philippine Army, but the ammunition had to purchased.

However there was little or no desire to help the Philippine army by either the Congress of the FDR administration. One reason why MacArthur was basically forced into retirement is that several important "New Dealers" particularly Murphy (later on SCOTUS) and Harold Ickes thought MacArthur was peddling "Militarism " and that the Philippines should have zero armed forces. This changed in 1939, but MacArthur was gone by then.

US army facilities were used for live firing but the training camps had to be built and paid for by the Filipino Commonwealth. Remember the Philippines were expected to become independent in 1946.

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Re: Chief of Staff Choices 1939?

Post by Delta Tank » 21 May 2021 23:27

Carl Schwamberger wrote:
21 May 2021 16:54
Delta Tank wrote:
21 May 2021 13:51
... When I was in the US Army, a senior officer got into some trouble, so the offer was Courts Martial or resignation. He took resignation, the way I understood it he forfeited his retirement pay and all other benefits from his service.

Mike
Only one? Circa 1977 I recall a senior Admiral getting his ass court martialed for taking bribes from the food industry. The USMC chow improved somewhat in subsequent years.
Carl,

That is the only one I knew about! I am sure there were others throughout the US Army.

Mike

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Re: Chief of Staff Choices 1939?

Post by Delta Tank » 21 May 2021 23:31

rcocean wrote:
21 May 2021 21:08
Hello Carl. Not sure this what you're looking for but the $8-$12 million is for the Filipino army. This has nothing to do with the War Department expenditures for the USA army in the Philippines. No $ were provided for the training ROTC officers for the Filipino Army. In fact, this became a matter of contention between MacArthur and the Filipino President in 1939 (See Eisenhower Prewar Diary and selected papers edited by David Eisenhower).

This is one reason why "Mobilizing" the Filipino army in the fall of 1940, was so important. It allowed the USA to start paying the costs for training, supplies, etc. For example, obsolete 75mm guns, Enfield Rifles, and stokes mortars were sold at cost and "Loaned" (and secured by a $6 million) to the Philippine Army, but the ammunition had to purchased.

However there was little or no desire to help the Philippine army by either the Congress of the FDR administration. One reason why MacArthur was basically forced into retirement is that several important "New Dealers" particularly Murphy (later on SCOTUS) and Harold Ickes thought MacArthur was peddling "Militarism " and that the Philippines should have zero armed forces. This changed in 1939, but MacArthur was gone by then.

US army facilities were used for live firing but the training camps had to be built and paid for by the Filipino Commonwealth. Remember the Philippines were expected to become independent in 1946.
rcocean,

Do you know the reason why the Philippines were not mobilized in 1940? Was it because we had already written them off? Did we mobilize the Puerto Rican National Guard? I can’t recall.

Mike

rcocean
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Re: Chief of Staff Choices 1939?

Post by rcocean » 22 May 2021 00:26

Mike:
Here's a "Note" in the marshall papers. Otherwise, i got nothing.

major General George Grunert had been commanding general of the Philippine Department since May 1940. Since July he had written numerous letters requesting the reinforcement of the Philippines. (See Marshall to Grunert, September 20, 1940, Papers of George Catlett Marshall, #2-267 [2: 314-15].) On November 2, 1940, he advised the chief of staff that the Regular Filipino Army was understrength, ill-equipped, and untrained for large-scale mobile warfare. Grunert needed five hundred United States officers for the immediate mobilization and training of Philippine units. The General Staff initially opposed Grunert’s requests because of strategic and physical difficulties: the War Plans Division feared a Japanese preemptive strike and the two-ocean war that would ensue; G-1 and G-3 argued that five hundred officers could not be sent to the Philippines. By December 26, however, Marshall reversed his strategic plans did not include a major commitment to defend the Philippines in the event of war, the army began a gradual reinforcement of that department as a deterrent to Japanese expansion. (Watson, Chief of Staff; pp. 417-24.

Wait. Here's something MORE from Watson's chief of staff about the request for Filipino mobilization :

WPD pointed to certain large strategic obstacles. Notably, the mobilization might convince the Japanese that the United States was building up its own Far East forces, and thus encourage Japan to steps designed to prevent or forestall such an organization, which itself could not be consummated for a year. Even the Philippine force thus envisaged would not itself suffice in an unlimited war; it would necessarily require American aid, and WPD (speaking for the Chief of Staff and the Joint Board as well) was opposed to committing the United States to a two-ocean war. General Grunert's proposal, if carried out, would undoubtedly help Philippine morale but "it would contribute little to the defensive strength . . . in the immediate future, and might result in involving us in action in that theater which we are not prepared to sustain." Record copies of the letter note concurrence of G-1, G2, and G3 and, while General Marshall's view is not specifically stated on the document, he must have approved the action taken. This was substantially as recommended by WPD, namely, the postponement of the summoning of the Philippine Army to U. S. service, but the assignment of seventy-five U. S. Reserve officers to assist in training that army as such.20
Last edited by rcocean on 22 May 2021 00:52, edited 3 times in total.

rcocean
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Re: Chief of Staff Choices 1939?

Post by rcocean » 22 May 2021 00:34

I'm not sure whether we mobilized the Puerto Rican NG, I'd assume so, since they were not in the same category as the Philippines, which were 6,000 miles from Continental USA and were NOT - I repeat - NOT scheduled for a 1946 Independence.

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EKB
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Re: Chief of Staff Choices 1939?

Post by EKB » 22 May 2021 05:43

Carl Schwamberger wrote:
21 May 2021 16:54
Delta Tank wrote:
21 May 2021 13:51
... When I was in the US Army, a senior officer got into some trouble, so the offer was Courts Martial or resignation. He took resignation, the way I understood it he forfeited his retirement pay and all other benefits from his service.

Mike
Only one? Circa 1977 I recall a senior Admiral getting his ass court martialed for taking bribes from the food industry. The USMC chow improved somewhat in subsequent years.

Richard Marcinko was accused of bribery and convicted for conspiracy to commit fraud when members of Congress are guilty of those acts as a matter of routine, usually without punishment.

Seems like minor stuff now, compared to what current military leaders get away with. Last December CENTCOM chief General Kenneth McKenzie, completely fabricated an Iran crisis and manipulated corporate media outlets to gain support to have more troops, more air power and more naval power kept within his sphere of influence. Most unsettling is that McKenzie also used this political manuever to defeat direct orders from Secretary of Defense Christopher Miller, who previously led the 5th Special Forces Group during his military service.

Few people defy the boss and carry on without backlash, as MacArthur learned when he challenged Truman.

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Re: Chief of Staff Choices 1939?

Post by Carl Schwamberger » 22 May 2021 19:24

Delta Tank wrote:
21 May 2021 23:31
... Do you know the reason why the Philippines were not mobilized in 1940? Was it because we had already written them off? Did we mobilize the Puerto Rican National Guard? I can’t recall.

Mike
Defense policy of the PI reached back to McKinley's decision to give them 'Protectorate' status. For a time policy was the US would defend its interests & Naval Base there, but was very vague on how. The War Scare of 1907 initiated some slightly more serious thought on the subject & two schools developed. 1. PI would be indefensible against a major power, or a regional Asian power (Japan). 2. PI would be defended. Make it work and not for too much money.

In the 1920s the Navy demonstrated fairly conclusively defending PI was impractical. Fleet & map exercises and endless staff studies showed War Plan Orange, or any other similar scenario would require a minimum of two years to execute & probably three. Given the funding of the US Army in the 1920s the War Dept could find no practical way to establish a army in PI that could hold out a year, let alone two. Policy settled on the don't bother side. We'll retake it after the naval war is won 24-36 months from a DoW.

Things shifted in 1940 with the mobilization & war acts/budgets after France collapsed. The raw numbers for the War & Navy Depts looked staggering & the superficial or those with a agenda assumed money could be shoved into a strong PI defense. However the mobilization budget was actually inadequate, & included next to nothing for PI defense. This led to a fight with several factions on each side. Among others some powerful businessmen in the 'Eastern Trade' lobbied for defending PI. On the other side the Isolationists did not see PI as 'America' & saw no point in defense funds or effort. The America First group had the same PoV. Defense funds should be spent on defending the US & not a island on the other side of the Pacific.

Ultimately the pro defense faction won in 1941, tho it was a hollow victory. There simply were no combat worthy forces to send. The still mobilizing Army could only disrupt the preparation of half trained formations to assemble a army corps and the FEAF on Luzon. Every dollar and trained officer or vehicle & aircraft sent reduced the forces in training in the US proportionatly. The America Firsters & others fought a rear guard action in this, their sympathizers in Congress regularly asking Sec War Stimson, Marshal, and Roosevelt why it was necessary to send yet another cargo ship of men & material to PI. Roosevelt was not a dictator & such challengers further complicated his endless negotiations with multiple Congressional groups over mobilization & war preparations. Europe First actions like the occupation of Iceland in July 1941, & the need to build a robust intervention force a emergency occupation of the Azores, Martinique, or Cape Verde Islands further drew on the wholly inadequate mobilized US military.

Roosevelt might have fought harder against the PI defense had he accepted war with Japan as inevitable. Until negotiations broke down August-October 1941 there was a assumption on all sides some sort of agreement would be reached & the war preparations were deterrence only. It was not until Japanese diplomatic internal messages intercepted by the MAGIC system indicate in October & early November indicated the Japanese had given up on negotiations that it was accepted there actually 'might' be a war with Japan very soon.

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Re: Chief of Staff Choices 1939?

Post by Carl Schwamberger » 22 May 2021 19:35

rcocean wrote:
22 May 2021 00:34
I'm not sure whether we mobilized the Puerto Rican NG, I'd assume so, since they were not in the same category as the Philippines, which were 6,000 miles from Continental USA and were NOT - I repeat - NOT scheduled for a 1946 Independence.
Puerto Rico was a US territory, the same as Alaska or Hawaii. The NG there was established and maintained under the same Federal Law & State agreements as with the States and other territories. PI was never a 'Territory' (That might lead to Statehood God forbid), it lacked a NG or any sort of formal militia. The only military trained Phillipinos were the few who had enlisted in the US armed forces. For reasons I outlined in the previous post, & a few others Congress was not going to fund or allow a substantial increase in build up of a PI military 1939-1941. So, no more than the officer & NCO training of the pre 1940 plan.

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Re: Chief of Staff Choices 1939?

Post by rcocean » 24 May 2021 00:31

I have no idea where you're getting the idea that "Congress" wouldn't have funded a Filipino mobilization, and I have no idea what your constant references to "America First" mean. Congress in 1940 was controlled by the Democrat party and they'd given FDR a blank check in June 1940 to build up the USA's defenses, Navy, and AF and also instituted the first peacetime draft. Congress was never asked to fund a Filipino mobilization, and there's ZERO evidence FDR and Marshall ever considered it.

They weren't interested in Funding the Filipino army. The reasons are stated in my quotes from the Marshall Papers. I must say some of the reasons given are absurd. Evidently, the Japanese were going to launch a "Preemptive strike" because 10 Filipino Divisions were mobilized and given adequate arms :lol: BTW, if you have any sources for your statements & generalization I'd be glad to read them.

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Re: Chief of Staff Choices 1939?

Post by Delta Tank » 24 May 2021 20:21

Rcocean,

The Marshall Papers, are they online or in book form?

I am currently reading “In Our Image, America’s Empire in the Philippines” by Stanley Karnow, have you read this book? If so comments?

Mike

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Re: Chief of Staff Choices 1939?

Post by rcocean » 25 May 2021 00:08

Hello Mike. The Papers of George Marshall Papers, are they online at the George Marshall Foundation https://www.marshallfoundation.org/libr ... llection=7 and are also been published by John Hopkins Press. Several volumes are on sale at Amazon. I've never read Our Image, America’s Empire in the Philippines” by Stanley Karnow, sounds interesting, think it won a Pulitzer Prize although lately that's not been a plus. :lol:

Delta Tank
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Re: Chief of Staff Choices 1939?

Post by Delta Tank » 25 May 2021 01:37

rcocean wrote:
25 May 2021 00:08
Hello Mike. The Papers of George Marshall Papers, are they online at the George Marshall Foundation https://www.marshallfoundation.org/libr ... llection=7 and are also been published by John Hopkins Press. Several volumes are on sale at Amazon. I've never read Our Image, America’s Empire in the Philippines” by Stanley Karnow, sounds interesting, think it won a Pulitzer Prize although lately that's not been a plus. :lol:
Thanks!! Since I received the George C Marshall award back in the day, I should read his papers! I have read the 3 Volumes written by Forrest Pogue which he autographed for me way back when!

Holy Cow!! Just saw the price!! May need a loan!!😁. He didn’t have any children!! Who is getting the money??🤷‍♀️

Mike

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