From Library Journal In the tradition of referring to Vietnam as Johnson's war or Nixon's war, Smith, who questions whether the Gulf War was necessary, places the responsibility for Desert Storm on Bush. Expressing constant misgivings about presidential warmaking, he provides a virtual day-by-day chronicle of the decisions of 1990 that led to war. Unlike Stephen R. Graubard's more polemic Mr. Bush's War ( LJ 1/92), Smith tries to chart the evolution of U.S. policy towards Iraq from disinterest through concern to outright hostility. Smith examines the role of public opinion, Congress, and the press in the evolution of Desert Shield into Desert Storm. He notes Bush's sense of personal mission as a factor affecting the decision to go all out, and he intimates that Bush may well have believed in the royal prerogatives with his constant use of the first person pronoun (singular). While Smith does not provide information on Bush's rise in the Reagan years as Graubard does, he is nonetheless highly critical of "loose" decision structures, though he commends Bush for brilliant coalition building. Highly recommended.- Frank Kessler, Missouri Western State Coll., St. JosephCopyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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