1419Papers May Clarify Eisenhower Viewpoints
- Feb 2, 2006http://www.guardian.co.uk/uslatest/story/0,,-5590298,00.html
Papers May Clarify Eisenhower Viewpoints
Friday February 3, 2006 3:01 AM
By MATT SEDENSKY
Associated Press Writer
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) - Archivists released documents
from Dwight Eisenhower's administration that
historians say could help refine their understanding
of the president's positions on national security and
The Eisenhower Presidential Library in Abilene, Kan.,
announced Thursday the release of 40,000 pages of
previously classified documents on subjects including
J. Edgar Hoover's domestic intelligence operation,
construction of the Berlin Wall and Middle East
Chester Pach, an Ohio University professor who
authored ``Presidency of Dwight D. Eisenhower,'' said
historians have many unanswered questions about the
president, including his role in planning the failed
1961 Bay of Pigs invasion.
``There are always gaps, I think, in our knowledge of
a presidency,'' Pach said.
The library also recently released 7,000 pages
specifically related to the Eisenhower
administration's civil rights policy.
The two-term Republican led the country from 1953 to
1961, during which the first two civil rights acts
since Reconstruction were passed and the president
used National Guard troops to uphold the Supreme
Court's Brown v. Board of Education ruling in Little
Despite that, Eisenhower has not been widely viewed as
a strong civil rights advocate.
``Eisenhower's often criticized for not being more
forthcoming on civil rights,'' said Fred Greenstein, a
professor emeritus at Princeton University whose book
``The Hidden Hand Presidency: Eisenhower as Leader''
helped change perceptions of the politician. ``We may
learn that there are quite different stories.''
The civil rights papers acquired by the library were
among the collection of Maxwell Rabb, associate
counsel and secretary to the cabinet in the Eisenhower
Karl Weissenbach, the library's assistant director and
supervisory archivist, said they largely pertain to
black and Jewish issues, with a small number of
documents related to Native American relations.
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