America's Military - The Cold War was pushing everything to the edge.

U.S. Military Policy: 1950 – Is America Ready For Another World War? – Past Daily Reference Room

America’s Military – The Cold War was pushing everything to the edge.

U.S. Military Policy: 1950 – Was America Ready For Another War – American Forum – October 1, 1950 – Gordon Skene Sound Collection –

America in 1950. Quickly falling into the rabbit hole of Korea, fueled by the air of agitation brought on by the Cold War – pondering if all these elements were pointing in the ominous direction of another World War, or was peace still a viable alternative?

That was a highly debatable question, one which had no easy answers. One which caused many sleepless nights. But the question was still whether or not America was prepared for another war, were we still ahead in technology to produce faster, better more deadly weaponry? Was our military adequately trained and equipped? Did we have adequate troop strength to face any kind of adversary?

First and foremost was the quest for peace – but not appeasement.

On this broadcast of American Forum Of The Air, the guest speakers are Senator Styles Bridges (R-New Hampshire) and Senator Lester Hunt (D-Wyoming) who were serving on the Armed Services Committee. Senator Hunt was delayed but the program begins with Styles Bridges. The issue at the time was, American forces were advancing well North and were at the 38th Parallel, the line which separated North Korea from South Korea. Crossing that line meant escalating the American response, and running the risk of engaging the Chinese and Russians who pledged support of North Korea. Bridges was adamant that we should cross the 38th parallel and go all the way to the Korean/China border, thus reuniting Korea and not settling for being cut in half as it was in 1950. Bridges justification for the move was based on the idea that America’s Military had been cast as a potentially weak adversary to the Communists, based on the recent issue over Berlin and the lack of a corridor, which resulted in the Berlin Airlift of 1948. A move that, if America had insisted on a corridor to Berlin during the time of crisis, Russia would surely have backed down, since they were in no position to get involved in another major crisis.

But history often repeats and it was in danger of repeating itself again in Korea. It’s interesting to note Bridges commenting that, unless the Korean issue of North and South was settled in 1950, it was going to hang around for years and decades later, which ironically it has.

To get an idea where America’s Military was in 1950, in the middle of a cold war and a shooting one in Korea, here is that episode of American Forum Of The Air for October 1, 1950.

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