- Historical event:
- 11 April 1951
- During the Korean War, Communist China sent its troops to help the North Koreans. General MacArthur then wanted to wage war against China, in which nuclear weapons would have likely been used.
The famous U.S. Army General Douglas MacArthur, who was the most decorated American soldier in history and victorious over Japan in World War II, was Commander-in-Chief of the United Nations Command during the Korean War.
His inspired military strategies managed to liberate South Korea from communist invasion and suppress the communists far north to the Chinese border. Then, however, communist China responded and sent troops to help the North Koreans.
MacArthur wanted to wage war against China, in which nuclear bombs would have likely been used.
U.S. President Truman, fearing that things have gone too far and could lead to world war, relieved MacArthur of his command. The American public was shocked. Namely, the fairly unpopular president had dismissed a very popular General.
The situation eventually calmed down and became a victory of the American presidential system. The U.S. are, namely, protected by its system from one powerful general taking over the control of the country.
This is achieved by the fact that there is no one general that commands the entire armed forces, but all supreme commands are combined in the hands of the President of the U.S. and the Secretary of Defense, both of whom are civilians rather than military personnel.