He was a small man from small town Missouri, who spent the first six decades of his life toiling in relative obscurity, but Harry S. Truman became larger than life and was there when America needed him the most. In this special edition of “War Stories with Oliver North,” you’ll learn of Truman’s love of country, public service and yes, even his love of poker.
Harry Truman walked into history’s spotlight on April 12, 1945, when he has sworn into office as the nation’s 33rd President following the death of Franklin Delano Roosevelt. Afterwards he said with absolute candor, “it is as though the sun, the moon and the stars have fallen on me.” It seems hard to believe today but as Vice President – Truman was never informed about FDR’s plans for ending the carnage of World War II – or the powerful secret weapon being developed to hasten our victory.
Oliver North spoke exclusively to the three surviving members of his administration: George Elsey; Ken Hechler; and Milton Kayle as they reflect not only Truman the politician, but Truman the man and leader.
Also in this episode, you will hear from Truman’s eldest grandson, Clifton Truman Daniel, who sheds light on the enormous challenges he faced as President: whether to use the Atom bomb; how to counter Soviet expansion and rebuild Europe and Japan; and a war in Korea. At home, he had to contend with an inflating economy, bitter labor disputes and crippling strikes, and a politically polarizing hunt for communists in the U.S.
Harry Truman helped shape the United States and the world, but through it all Truman remained a man of the people. His legacy is one of a good man who rose to the occasion and took on the greatest challenges of his time.