4 JULY 1952, Page 50

ENGLISH readers will see in this book what Americans see

when they look westwards away from the tortuosities of Europe across the Pacific to the Far East. Protecting this "American lake," in the, middle of which the President and General MacArthur met in a but on Wake Island, they see the Philippines and Japan, both pupils of theirs, Formosa, Korea and the Aleutians. The purpose of the book is to state the great conflict in American foreign policy precipi- tated by General MacArthur's dismissal from that area. The authors, a well-known commentator on public affairs and a Harvard don, look for the cause of the conflict in the American Pacific interests which General MacArthur came to personify during the thirteen years of building, reconquering and rebuilding out there ; and they treat the subject in the form of a biography, not of the man, but of his legend. From his pre-war attempt, to make 'the Philippines impregnable until his recall, his career followed through songs his soldiers sang of him, reports his generals made of him, impressions of his behaviour in war-conferences with the President, descriptions correspondents sent back to America of him, his effect on Filipinos and Japanese and his own communiques and open letters. In describing the contro- versies at the Congressional enquiry into his recall, the authors ably defend American policy at Yalta and in China. Their tracing of the significance of the General's career through contemporary opinions, rather than facts, is fluent, though at times the result is confused; lacking scholarly perseverance. For Americans the authors reduce, without bitterness, the MacArthur legend to human proportions ; for Englishmen they 'make the American attraction for all he personifies understandable.

A. E. T.