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CONTENTS

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History of the Office of the Secretary of Defense, Volume Two

OSD Nuclear Responsibilities

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HISTORY OF THE OFFICE OF THE SECRETARY OF DEFENSE - THE TEST OF WAR, 1950-1953

The Test of War, the second volume in the planned comprehensive History of the Office of the Secretary of Defense, follows the evolution of OSD from the outbreak of the Korean War in June 1950 to the end of the Truman presidency in January 1953- Like the first volume in the series (The Formative Years, 1947-1950), the present one focuses on the secretaries of defense, their staffs, and OSD's administration of the Pentagon and examines, beyond OSD and the Department of Defense, the larger framework of national security organization and policy that involved the White House, Congress, and other agencies of the government,

As the central event of this period, the Korean War tested the mettle of officials and institutions throughout the national security establishment, but nowhere more acutely than in the E-ring offices of the Pentagon leadership. The Korean-era secretaries of defense—Louis Johnson. George Marshall, and Robert Lovett—confronted a maze of problems relating to strategy, budgets, manpower, weapons development, and service roles and missions. Operating under wartime pressures while attempting to manage a department on-lv recently created and still undergoing major adjustments, they faced a formidable agenda made even more difficult by domestic political and economic constraints that narrowed the options available to them.

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