American Warlords is the story of the greatest "team of rivals" since the days of Lincoln. In a lifetime shaped by politics, President Franklin D. Roosevelt proved himself a master manipulator of Congress, the press, and the public. But when war in Europe and Asia threatened America's shores, FDR found himself in a world turned upside down, where his friends became his foes, his enemies his allies. To help wage democracy's first "total war," he turned to one of history's most remarkable triumvirates. Henry Stimson, an old-money Republican from Long Island, rallied to FDR's banner to lead the Army as Secretary of War, and championed innovative weapons that shape our world today. General George C. Marshall argued with Roosevelt over grand strategy, but he built the world's greatest war machine and willingly sacrificed his dream of leading the invasion of Europe that made his prot g , Dwight Eisenhower, a legend. Admiral Ernest J. King, a hard-drinking, irascible fighter who "destroyed" Pearl Harbor in a prewar naval exercise, understood how to fight Japan, but he also battled the Army, the Air Force, Douglas MacArthur, and his British allies as they moved armies and fleets across the globe. These commanders threw off sparks whenever they clashed: Generals against politicians, Army versus Navy. But those sparks lit the fire of victory. During four years of bitter warfare, FDR's lieutenants learned to set aside deep personal, political, and professional differences and pull a nation through the twentieth century's darkest days. Encircling Roosevelt's warlords-and sometimes bitterly at odds with them-was a colorful cast of the Second World War's giants: Winston Churchill, MacArthur, Josef Stalin, Eisenhower, Eleanor Roosevelt, and Charles de Gaulle. These and other larger-than-life figures enrich a sweeping story of an era brimming with steel, fire, and blood. Drawing upon a wealth of primary sources, American Warlords goes behind closed doors to give readers an intimate, often surprising view of titans who led America from isolation to the summit of global power. Written in a robust, engaging style, author Jonathan W. Jordan offers a vivid portrait of four extraordinary Americans in the eye of war's hurricane.
In the first days of U.S. involvement in World War II, President Franklin Roosevelt faced a severe lack of resources, as well as various branches of the military at odds with each other, as he prepared the nation to wage a “total war.”
Putting aside any personal rivalries and ambitions, Secretary of War Henry Stimson, General George C. Marshall and Admiral Ernest J. King had to rise to the challenge of working together towards defeating the Axis powers.
Jonathan W. Jordan is the New York Times best-selling Brothers Rivals Victors: Eisenhower, Patton, Bradley and the Partnership That Drove the Allied Conquest in Europe, and the award-winning book Lone Star Navy: Texas, the Fight for the Gulf of Mexico, and the Shaping of the American West. He is a contributing author to The Armchair Reader: World War II and The Armchair Reader: The Amazing Book of World History, and the editor of the Library of Texas edition of Commodore Edwin Ward Moore’s 1843 work To the People of Texas. His writing has appeared in World War II magazine, Armchair General, Military History, World War II History, and MHQ: The Quarterly Journal of Military History, and he is a regular book reviewer for The Wall Street Journal. He has appeared on radio, television and film documentaries on a variety of history topics.
A native of Savannah, Georgia, Jon grew up on Air Force bases, from which his father flew C-141 Starlifters for the Military Airlift Command during the Vietnam War. He lived in New Jersey, Ohio, and the Philippines until 1977, when his family moved to Selma, Alabama. Jon obtained an accounting degree from Samford University in Birmingham, Alabama and his law degree from Vanderbilt University. He practiced law in Texas for nine years before moving to Marietta, Georgia. He lives in Marietta with his wife, Kate, their three children, and three dogs of uncertain parentage. He currently practices commercial litigation and corporate bankruptcy law at the Atlanta-based firm King & Spalding LLP.
When not cheering from basketball, fencing and soccer sidelines, or hiking, shooting or camping, Jon is working on his next book.
“Perhaps the most compelling stories here are of the historical turns that almost, but didn’t, happen—Marshall as commander of Overlord, Dewey as president, the Morgenthau Plan (to reduce postwar Germany to a meek agrarian state) rather than the Marshall Plan—each of them near misses that would have recast history.”
“Jordan’s research is exemplary; the detail he brings forth about the men of this time and the conflicts they faced, both outside Washington and inside, paints a picture of a small group of men who understood only too well what was happening on both sides of their world. They are presented in such a way as to be human on the one hand and almost superhuman on the other…. A must-read.”
“Mr. Jordan has done an admirable job of making these men come alive. He uses their own words to weave a good tale.”