Diplomat in Khaki
Major General Frank Ross McCoy and American Foreign Policy, 1898-1949
With a New Preface by the Author
A. J. Bacevich
Hailed by the New York Times as “one of the best soldiers this country has produced,” Frank Ross McCoy was, throughout his distinguished career, much more than just a good soldier. As friend and confidant to such leaders as Theodore Roosevelt, Leonard Wood, and Henry Stimson, he disproves the standard view of the military before 1940 as having no role in American foreign policy. Instead, as A. J. Bacevich ably demonstrates, McCoy was intimately involved in the development of U.S. foreign relations from McKinley’s administration to Truman’s.
McCoy began his military career with Leonard Wood in Cuba during the Spanish-American War. After the war, he and Wood (who became military governor) worked together to establish democratic reforms in Cuba. There followed for McCoy a succession of difficult and sometimes dangerous assignments: The Philippines (during the Moro uprising), Mexico, France (as combat commander during World War I), Turkey and Armenia, the Philippines again, Nicaragua (during the Sandinos guerrilla campaign), Bolivia and Paraguay, and China (with the Lytton Commission investigating Japan’s invasion of Manchuria). Following a series of stateside appointments, McCoy served finally as chairman of the Far Eastern Commission, an international body created to determine the fate of postwar Japan.
“[Diplomat in Khaki is] superb diplomatic history on the one hand and an engaging portrait of the interwar Army on the other.”
“Diplomat in Khaki offers a new perspective on the Army as an institution in American society. Even though the subject of this study is the life of a career Army officer, this work should make its way into the literatures of American diplomacy and of Progressivism, as well as that of military biography.”
“This useful biography, well written and thoroughly researched, traces the activities of a regular army officer whose career reflected the changing role of the military during the twentieth century.”
—Journal of American History
“A most interesting and well-told story.”
—American Historical Review
“A biography of a lesser-known military career man, this book chronicles McCoy’s incredibly rich life of service to his country.”
“McCoy participated in major events at home and around the world from the 1890s to the era of the Korean War. This gracefully written volume will be read by all serious military and diplomatic historians, as well as by military sociologists who wish to know more about the history of American military elites.”
—J. Garry Clifford, author of The First Peacetime Draft and The Citizen SoldiersSee fewer reviews...
Based on exhaustive research in McCoy’s personal papers and official records, Bacevich shows that McCoy’s career provides a unique perspective both on American foreign policy and on civil-military relations.