Day By Day

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Was Kennedy the Worst?

Was John F. Kennedy the worst president of the Twentieth Century? Tom Ricks thinks so, and with regard to foreign and military policy he makes a good case. 
In retrospect, he spent his 35 months in the White House stumbling from crisis to fiasco. He came into office and okayed the Bay of Pigs invasion. Then he went to a Vienna summit conference and got his clock cleaned by Khrushchev. That led to, among other things, the Cuban missile crisis and a whiff of nuclear apocalypse.
Looming over it all is the American descent into Vietnam.
And there's more.

I think Kennedy's domestic record was even worse. Most of what we remember about him is a fiction created after his death. The real man was undoubtedly a disaster, but to name him as the worst? I dunno. There's a lot of competition there at the bottom.

Read Ricks' article here.

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