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From Hot War to ColdThe U.S. Navy and National Security Affairs, 1945–1955$
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Jeffrey G. Barlow

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780804756662

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804756662.001.0001

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Living in “Interesting Times”1

Living in “Interesting Times”1

Chapter:
(p.199) Chapter 10 Living in “Interesting Times”1
Source:
From Hot War to Cold
Publisher:
Stanford University Press
DOI:10.11126/stanford/9780804756662.003.0011

This chapter discusses the events following the resignation of James Forrestal as Secretary of Defense in March 1949. Forrestal's replacement, Louis Johnson, cancelled the Navy's plans to build the flush-deck aircraft carrier United States, which eventually led to the resignation of Navy Secretary John Sullivan. The appointment of Francis Matthews as Sullivan's replacement, and senior naval officers' lack of confidence in his abilities, spurred the secretive distribution of the Anonymous Document to selected members of Congress. The document castigated the Air Force's procurement of the B-36 bomber. While this action was the work of two individuals in the Navy Department, people on the outside, including the senior leaders of the Army and Air Force, were convinced that the entire Navy Department had been behind the scheme. This set the stage for renewed interservice fighting over issues of military strategy and the place of the Navy in national defense.

Keywords:   U.S. Navy, U.S. Army, James Forrestal, Louis Johnson, aircraft carriers, Francis Matthews, John Sullivan

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