Douglas MacArthur

Douglas
MacArthur
1880
1964

American General and Field Marshal of the Philippine Army, Chief of Staff of the United States Army, Awarded the Medal of Honor

Author Quotes

Found a little patched-up inn in the village of Bulson.... Proprietor had nothing but potatoes; but what a feast he laid before me. Served them in five different courses: potato soup, potato fricassee, potatoes creamed, potato salad, and finished with potato pie. It may be because I had not eaten for 36 hours, but that meal seems about the best I ever had.

I stand on this rostrum with a sense of deep humility and great pride — humility in the weight of those great American architects of our history who have stood here before me; pride in the reflection that this home of legislative debate represents human liberty in the purest form yet devised.

Like the old soldier of the ballad, I now close my military career and just fade away, an old soldier who tried to do his duty as God gave him the light to see that duty. Goodbye.

Part of the American dream is to live long and die young. Only those Americans who are willing to die for their country are fit to live.

They have chosen to risk death rather than slavery. Their last words to me were: "Don't scuttle the Pacific!"

You only grow old by deserting your ideals. Years wrinkle the skin, giving up wrinkles the soul.

Give me ten thousand Filipino soldiers and I will conquer the world.

I still remember the refrain of one of the [West Point] barracks ballads ... which proclaimed most proudly that old soldiers never die; they just fade away. And like the old soldier in that ballad, I now close my military career and just fade away, an old soldier who tried to do his duty as God gave him the light to see that duty.

Men since the beginning of time have sought peace. Various methods through the ages have been attempted to devise an international process to prevent or settle disputes between nations. From the very start workable methods were found in so far as individual citizens were concerned, but the mechanics of an instrumentality of larger international scope have never been successful. Military alliances, balances of power, Leagues of Nations, all in turn failed, leaving the only path to be by way of the crucible of war. The utter destructiveness of war now blocks out this alternative. We have had our last chance. If we will not devise some greater and more equitable system, Armageddon will be at our door.

People of the Philippines: I have returned. By the grace of Almighty God our forces stand again on Philippine soil—soil consecrated in the blood of our two peoples. We have come dedicated and committed to the task of destroying every vestige of enemy control over your daily lives, and of restoring upon a foundation of indestructible strength, the liberties of your people.

This does not mean that you are warmongers. On the contrary, the soldier above all other people prays for peace, for he must suffer and bear the deepest wounds and scars of war. But always in our ears ring the ominous words of Plato, that wisest of all philosophers: Only the dead have seen the end of war.

Here are centered the hopes and aspirations and faith of the entire human race. I do not stand here as advocate for any partisan cause, for the issues are fundamental and reach quite beyond the realm of partisan consideration. They must be resolved on the highest plane of national interest if our course is to prove sound and our future protected. I trust, therefore, that you will do me the justice of receiving that which I have to say as solely expressing the considered viewpoint of a fellow American.

I suppose, in a way, this has become part of my soul. It is a symbol of my life. Whatever I have done that really matters, I've done wearing it. When the time comes, it will be in this that I journey forth. What greater honor could come to an American, and a soldier?

My first memory was of the sound of bugles.

Rules are mostly made to be broken and are too often for the lazy to hide behind.

Today the guns are silent. A great tragedy has ended. A great victory has been won. The skies no longer rain with death - the seas bear only commerce - men everywhere walk upright in the sunlight. The entire world lies quietly at peace. The holy mission has been completed. And in reporting this to you, the people, I speak for the thousands of silent lips, forever stilled among the jungles and the beaches and in the deep waters of the Pacific which marked the way.

A general is just as good or just as bad as the troops under his command make him.

History fails to record a single precedent in which nations subject to moral decay have not passed into political and economic decline. There has been either a spiritual awakening to overcome the moral lapse, or a progressive deterioration leading to ultimate national disaster.

I would hope that our beloved country will drink deep from the chalice of courage.

My first recollection is that of a bugle call.

Talk of imminent threat to our national security through the application of external force is pure nonsense. Our threat is from the insidious forces working from within which have already so drastically altered the character of our free institutions - those institutions we proudly called the American way of life.

Today, freedom is on the offensive, democracy is on the march.

A new era is upon us. Even the lesson of victory itself brings with it profound concern, both for our future security and the survival of civilization. The destructiveness of the war potential, through progressive advances in scientific discovery, has in fact now reached a point which revises the traditional concepts of war.

However horrible the incidents of war may be, the soldier who is called upon to offer and to give his life for his country is the noblest development of mankind.

If we will not devise some greater and more equitable system, Armageddon will be at our door.

Author Picture
First Name
Douglas
Last Name
MacArthur
Birth Date
1880
Death Date
1964
Bio

American General and Field Marshal of the Philippine Army, Chief of Staff of the United States Army, Awarded the Medal of Honor