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TOP 500 REVIEWERon November 1, 2010
`Going Home to Glory' covers Dwight D. Eisenhower's life from the time of Kennedy's inauguration and Eisenhower's return to "private" life and his death in 1969. David, of course was his grandson and his namesake and married Eisenhower's vice-president Nixon's daughter, Julie; but do not think that this is an unobjective writing.
David Eisenhower is a superb writer. He is thorough in his research; going to as many primary sources as possible, those persons still living, the personal notes, papers and documents rather than just using secondary ones- books and previously published material. Of course for many subjects, especially his grandfather, he is a primary resource himself; but his writing is very impartial and fair, both in dealing with his subject and his mind-set himself.
He includes his own observations and some of the correspondence that he had with his grandfather. His thoughts are warm and create a private picture of a world figure that bring a warmth and closeness to the story; but that is not the main focus. Most of the book deals with Eisenhower's political feelings and observation on what was happening in the world /US scene. There are the moments of the wise grandfather and he is treated gently, especially in the subject of the Bay of Pigs debacle; but there are many little, if known at all facts: Mamie's thoughts that she was not sure that anyone, including herself really knew Ike. He was kept informed and briefed by all the presidents after him, so there are many views and judgments on world events, including the Cuban missile crises, civil rights and the various elections.

We see Eisenhower as a general, who wanted that title back rather than Mr. President, a man who led the allied forces in WWII, a president and as a grandfather, who once he discovered the remote control drove Mamie and everyone else to distraction by changing channels every 90 seconds. A grandfather who did not understand or approve of the morals of the 1960's and as a General who felt Johnson mishandled the war in Vietnam.
A list of abbreviations used in an appendix would have been somewhat helpful for those that forget what NSC and JES, for example mean, you are told once, if at all, but again that is not really a problem in the reading.

David's views and opinions to a minor extent are included in the writing, but they are not obtrusive . It is a personal and at the same time a broader look into one of America' s senior statesmen and leaders. What a perfect book DDE has completed for anyone who loves US history and wishes to learn more in an enjoyable, informative way.
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on October 30, 2010
I was born during the final years of the Eisenhower administration, so I don't have any of my own memories of Ike. I do, however, remember how much my parents and grandparents admired him (my mother still has in her jewelry box a gold-toned pin that spells out "Ike"). So what a treat it is to read this very warm and deeply informative account of Ike's final years, as seen through the eyes of his grandson, David. This marvelous book draws back the curtain on the great General, without interposing on our view the rose-colored glasses that so often mar memoirs today. Written with affection but also with an historian's objective distance, Going Home to Glory reveals an Eisenhower only known heretofore to his closest intimates. As I read this book, I almost felt like I was eavesdropping on David and Julie as they reminisced with close friends or family about this great man whom they knew so well, both as a public figure beloved by the world and as private man loved by his family. This is a marvelous book and would make an especially great holiday present for anyone who once proclaimed that "I Like Ike." If you liked Ike, you'll love this book.
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on October 7, 2012
Thanks so much, David, for giving us a glimpse into the personal lives of the Eisenhowers after your grandfather, "General Ike" left the presidency to retire on his Gettysburg, Pa. farm. I read this recently on my Kindle Fire and plan to order a hardcover to share with friends.

This is a well-written and lively book thruout as David recounts his childhood and teenage memories as the only grandson of a great and complex man. The title is perfect - Young David's love story with Julie Nixon, a person I have admired since she lived in the White House, was interesting. David did not mince words as he portrayed his famous grandfather in retirement - many stories will make you shake your head in wonder!

This is a book for history lovers and it is unique - I remember all the presidents since Truman - biographies by their children fascinate me but this one tops them all in my opinion - from a grandson's point of view as a child and teen and a young newly-wed. David was with Ike at the very end too - a loving account of Ike's final days in the last chapter.

Great job - David and Julie - you both lived thru tumultuous times in our nation's history.
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on November 1, 2010
Going Home To Glory is a very interesting story about the relationship between Ike and his grandson, David. It is a story told with the political upheaval of the 60's as its backdrop (and thus made it an interesting read for history enthusiasts), but what made it so wonderful to me was how personal it was.
I would recommend this as a gift to any father, grandfather or son. A very powerful book.
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on November 20, 2010
Alfred Stillman: Philadelphia, PA
There are many levels on which to enjoy "Going Home to Glory". First, it is written in a style that immediately captures the reader's interest and maintains it until the last sentence. Secondly, the book is replete with major historical figures but the authors present them as ordinary human beings exhibiting both heroic and disarmingly frail qualities that make us appreciate them in a personal and even friendly manner. This is especially true of the book's major character, General and President Dwight David Eisenhower, who is shown as a devoted family man, a farmer, a loyal friend, and a highly literate and hard working individual who strove to master any field in which he engaged. Lastly, the reader will certainly appreciate the meticulous research that went into this book's production. I personally checked some of the more abstruse and unfamiliar statements and found them all to be absolutely true. The authors' closeness to the General give the reader many unexpected and lovely insights into his character that made me realize how fortunate we were to have a gentleman of such humanity at our helm.
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on November 22, 2010
History buffs, political junkies and anyone who remembers the 50's and 60's will enjoy this historically accurate and very personal portrayal of Dwight D. Eisenhower's life from the moment he leaves office until his death. Told by a couple with a highly unique perspective , the grandson of one president and the daughter of another, it is full of previously private revelations written with reverence, respect and a sense of humor.

From a historic perspective, this book objectively details the thought processes leading to General Eisenhower's involvement in politics and with world leaders after he left office. From a personal perspective, "Ike and Mamie" come alive with the memories the authors David Eisenhower and Julie Nixon Eisenhower so generously share.
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on February 18, 2014
History has proven that Eisenhower's presidency was no fluke. He was in control for eight years and his policies were carefully worked out and thought through in a non-partisan fashion we could only dream of today in the gridlock that paralyzes our country. This is an excellent book, giving insights into a complex man who was under-rated when he left office and has now emerged as a pragmatic leader who put his country above any party affiliation. I would recommend this book to anyone who doesn't remember Eisenhower or who who thinks they know what he was like. This book covers his retirement years and gives glimpses of his character. At one point David Eisenhower asks his grandmother Mamie if anyone really knows his famous grandfather. Her answer? "No, not really..." I recommend it wholeheartedly.
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on December 6, 2014
This is a book of interest to political researchers. It tells the personal recollections of a grandson after his grandfather's Presidency. It also provides a resource of views and thoughts on the issues of the times.

Readers learn that immediately upon ending his term as President, Dwight Eisenhower went to live on a farm he purchased in 1950 in Gettysburg, Pa. People gathered along the published route to see and greet his car as he passed by.

In Eisenhower's last Presidential address, he observed that the U.S. had experienced eight years of peace and the economy was sound. He warned that the "military industrial" complex could upset domestic policies. Khruschev's call for "wars of national liberation" drew international attention. President-elect Kennedy was fearful about the nation's standing and declared the U.S. should "be as a city upon a hill---the eyes of all people are upon us". In his inaugural speech, Kennedy declared "let us begin anew", words that many Eisenhower supporters did not like.

Eisenhower believed Nixon should have used Eisenhower more in the 1960 Presidential campaign. It was felt the election was partially a referendum of the Eisenhower Administration.

Eisenhower pledged to back Kennedy's foreign policies, so long as they did not include recognizing Red China. He also wanted Dulles International Airport to continue being named after Dulles and he wanted his rank as a Five Star General reinstated.

Kennedy's aides realized that the Five Star rank would give Eisenhower more distance from the White House. Kennedy approved the request and Congress granted it.

Kennedy turned more to fellow Democrat Truman than to Republican Eisenhower for guidance. This was even though Truman considered Kennedy a "spoiled young man". Truman had discussed supporting Eisenhower for President if he ran as a Democrat in 1948 and Truman would have been his running mate. The friendship between Truman and Eisenhower dissolved when Eisenhower chose to run for President as a Republican in 1952.

Eisenhower had planned a CIA led invasion of Cuba from Trinidad by Cuban exiles trained in Guatemala. Kennedy was hesitant as he knew world opinion disapproved of colonialism by national superpowers. Kennedy attempted to distance the U.S. from the invasion and delayed the invasion date. The invasion location was moved from a daytime invasion from Trinidad to a more difficult nighttime invasion at the Bay of Pigs. Kennedy called off a bombing support in fear the Soviet Union could retaliate in Berlin. The hope was the invasion would create an uprising of popular support for a new government. Castro defeated the invaders within two days. Eisenhower was upset because he believed more support should have been given to assure the invasion worked. Eisenhower strongly believed in proper planning and organization and he believed Kennedy was reacting upon too much conflicting advice rather than creating a set plan of action.

Kennedy wondered why Eisenhower spent so much of his Presidency playing gold and with whom he golfed. Kennedy stated "I could understand if he played golf all the time with old Army friends...All his golfing pals are rich men he has met since 1945."

Several Republican leaders suggested forming a "shadow government" led by Eisenhower. It was decided it should appeal more to younger, more conservative voters. It was decided Eisenhower should "remain above the battle".

Nixon wanted to run for President and was debating running for Governor of California in 1962. Eisenhower encouraged him to run, noting Nelson Rockefeller had a platform as New York Governor that provided him public attention. Also, Eisenhower thought Nixon was the strongest candidate to win California for the Republicans.

Eisenhower stood by his criticism of the "military industrial complex". He spoke how the overproducing of missiles was too costly financially. He feared it was giving the U.S. a negative worldwide image. He warned of public policy succumbing to "a scientific-technological elite".

Eisenhower criticized Kennedy's "grab for power" that increased spending and centralized government. Kennedy went to Harrisburg, 35 miles away from Gettysburg to make his strongest attack on the Eisenhower Administration. This attack in his backyard drove Eisenhower to go on the campaign trail. Eisenhower sent a message to Kennedy of "one more attack like that in Harrisburg and my position of bipartisan support in foreign policy will draw to a permanent end." Kennedy did not attack Eisenhower on foreign policy ever again.

Kennedy pursued a less confrontational policy towards the Soviet Union and obtained an agreement to stop atmosphere nuclear weapons test.

Eisenhower was upset when ABC News anchor Howard K. Smith had a special entitled "The Political Obituary of Richard Nixon". Eisenhower asked ABC News to discharge Smith. Smith went on permanent assignment as a reporter. Smith returned as an ABC news anchor a few years later.

The Pennsylvania legislature, Governor, and Supreme Court gathered in Gettysburg for the 100th anniversary of Lincoln's Gettysburg Address. Governor William Scranton noted "the tyranny of prejudice is doomed because the American people, in their common sense, realize it is wrong". Eisenhower spoke, noting "Lincoln's faith on the Gettysburg battle would one day result in a peaceful union has been justified, but the unfinished work of which he spoke in 1863 is still unfinished."

After Kennedy was assassinated, President Lyndon Johnson asked Eisenhower to meet him. They spoke three times shortly afterwards. Eisenhower and Truman met and put past their previous disagreements. The two, though, would not speak to each other again.

Eisenhower disliked Barry Goldwater. Goldwater had called the Eisenhower Administration "a dime store New Deal". Goldwater had inherited the conservation wing of the Republican Party from anti-Eisenhower Robert Taft supporters. Eisenhower and moderate Republicans could not determine a strategy while Goldwater's campaign advanced. Eisenhower felt Goldwater did not have a basic grasp of Presidential powers, especially when Goldwater spoke of ending relations with the Soviet Union yet claiming he as President would not have the ability to do it. Eisenhower doubted Goldwater's grasp of Presidential authority.

Eisenhower supported the United Nations and civil rights, which Goldwater fought. Ts helped boost Nelson Rockefeller's candidacy, as Rockefeller agreed with Eisenhower on these issues. Rockefeller's divorce and remarriage to a younger wife hurt Rockefeller as Goldwater campaigned on morality. Rockefeller's wife gave birth just before the "winner take all Delegates" California Primary, which allowed the morality issue to reemerge and Goldwater won the California Primary by a narrow 68,000 votes. Rockefeller withdrew from the race.

Goldwater was 150 Delegates short of the nomination. Dwight Eisenhower's brother Milton recommended Bill Scranton for President. Dwight agreed and he called to meet with Scranton. There is disagreement as to what happened at the meeting. Scranton believes he had Eisenhower's support for President. Eisenhower believes he only wanted Scranton to announce he was available to run for President. Scranton appeared on television and Eisenhower was unimpressed with what he saw. Eisenhower called Scranton to state he would not be part of any "stop Goldwater" movement. Dwight Eisenhower did approve of his brother Milton being a Delegate from Maryland for Scranton.

Goldwater secured the nomination. Eisenhower called Goldwater and recommended Goldwater pick Scranton as his running mate. Eisenhower didn't know Goldwater had already decided upon Republican National Chairman, Rep. Bill Miller.

Goldwater met with Eisenhower, Richard Nixon, and governors Scranton, Rockefeller, and George Romney of Michigan. They all met in Harrisburg. Eisenhower and others tried to convince Goldwater to explain and moderate his views on extremism. Goldwater announced he refused to make any "concessions". Eisenhower privately stated he thought Goldwater was "just plain dumb".

Milton Eisenhower felt going to war in Vietnam would be a "colossal mistake". Dwight Eisenhower felt the U.S. should not enter the war by itself. Eisenhower advised Johnson to win the war, He opposed the "graduated response" that was the policy, arguing instead for a "quick and overwhelming" response. Eisenhower also called for a wider warin, including invading Cambodia.
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on October 1, 2013
I grew up in DC from 1940-1965. I saw Ike once in an open top car downtown. My Mother and I were "I Like IKE" fans. This is a great story of a men who we loved and honored. What did IKE do for me, He gave me "Happy Days." Reading and listening to this book was like reliving my teen years. I salute David and Julie for this work. One of the best things IKE did for me was Compulsorily Military Training. Two weeks after my High School graduation I was on a troop train headed to basic training. Basic training taught me that I could do things I didn't want to which made me a better man. At 75 I still think of IKE with a tear in my eye. Like David those were my Golden Years.
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on November 19, 2014
Since Dwight Eisenhower is my personal hero, I cannot exaggerate how much I enjoyed this book. I've read several books about Ike, but I'm not sure any captured his personality the way "Going Home to Glory" did. There are facts in here that you will not learn in any biography. My only complaint was that I felt the book understated Eisenhower's role in the Cuban Missile Crisis. But that pales in comparison to the importance this book will have in future study of this great man. David Eisenhower earns my personal "thanks" for capturing his grandfather as never before.
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