A capacity crowd marked the 50th anniversary of President Dwight D. Eisenhower's Farewell Address at a Washington, D.C. event co-sponsored by the Eisenhower Institute of Gettysburg College.
Jan. 18's program at the Newseum included a rare complete showing of the speech, in which Eisenhower coined the term "military-industrial complex," and a panel discussion led by David Gergen of Harvard's Kennedy School of Government. The panelists were James Fallows of The Atlantic, Dana Priest of The Washington Post, and Evan Thomas of Newsweek.
"The panelists praised the speech and said it was full of wisdom that could be applied today," the Abilene, Kansas Reflector-Chronicle reported in its article on the event. Abilene is the site of Eisenhower Presidential Library and Museum, which also co-sponsored the event.
Introductory remarks were by Susan Eisenhower, chair emeritus of Gettysburg College's Eisenhower Institute and Ike's granddaughter. She "remembers the final days of his presidency. She said he was ready to become a private citizen and return to his rural roots on a farm in Gettysburg," the Reflector-Chronicle reported.
Eisenhower's Farewell will also be the focus of a public event on campus on Feb. 8.
Susan Eisenhower reflected on the speech in a Washington Post op-ed headlined "50 years later, we're still ignoring Ike's warning." Kasey Pipes, Norris Senior Fellow for the Eisenhower Institute, provided commentary titled, Dwight D. Eisenhower looking better with age, that appeared in the San Francisco Chronicle on Jan 23.
"While the farewell address may be remembered primarily for the passages about the military-industrial complex, Ike was rising above the issues of the day to appeal to his countrymen to put the nation and its future first," she wrote. "As I see my grandfather's black-and-white image deliver these words, a simple thought lingers in my mind: This man was speaking for me, for us. We are those grandchildren. We are the great beneficiaries of his generation's prudence and sacrifice."
Susan Eisenhower is a public policy analyst and chair of leadership and public policy programs for the Eisenhower Institute of Gettysburg College.
President Eisenhower's activities as he left office were reviewed from a different point of view recently when Gettysburg College history Prof. Michael Birkner examined Ike's relation to New Jersey history in an article for the Bergen County Record.
Founded in 1832, Gettysburg College is a highly selective four-year residential college of liberal arts and sciences with a strong academic tradition that includes Rhodes Scholars, a Nobel laureate and other distinguished scholars among its alumni. The college enrolls 2,600 undergraduate students and is located on a 200-acre campus adjacent to the Gettysburg National Military Park in Pennsylvania.
Contact: Jim Hale, senior staff writerPosted: Thu, 20 Jan 2011
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