Douglas MacArthur: Soldier of the Century III
Thanks for correcting several myths critical of MacArthur. One that is constantly used by his detractors is the disastrous Japanese air attack on Clark Field Air Force Base in the Philippines, several hours after Pearl Harbor. As you pointed out, his air chief Lt. General Lewis Brereton was largely responsible for allowing 17 B-17s to be destroyed on the ground. General Brereton was later transferred to the European Theatre of Operations where he took command of the 1st Allied Airborne Army in Operation Market Garden (another disaster). Operation Market Garden was the largest airborne assault of the war and was made into an excellent movie in the eighties titled “A Bridge Too Far.”
Mount Vernon, WA
Thanks for writing. We appreciate all the letters we’ve been getting on MacArthur.
WITH FRIENDS LIKE BRERETON WHO NEEDS ENEMIES.
MAC ARTHUR GOT RID OF BRERETON BUT SOME WISH HE STAYED BEHIND AND BECAME A POW IN THE P ISLANDS.
In June 1942 Brereton was appointed commander of U.S. Middle East Air Forces. This unit eventually became the U.S. Ninth Air Force. Among the missions undertaken by the heavy bomber units of the Ninth Air Force during Brereton’s command was the low-level bombing of Ploieşti, Romania, termed Operation Tidal Wave. It was Brereton who insisted that the raid be undertaken despite receiving intelligence estimates that predicted fully 50% of the attacking force would be shot down. The Ploesti air raid duly took place, resulting in severe losses to the U.S. Army’s B-24 squadrons.
WHERE DO THESE PEOPLE COME FROM.
GOOD GOD ALMIGHTY, WHY?
WITH EVERY GOOD WISH.
JOHN W. BUGLER