General Douglas MacArthur was a military icon second to none, and his impact on US military strength in WWII is one that will be remembered for decades.

MacArthur was an individual who saw leadership as the single greatest factor in determining victory over defeat. His presence exuded good ole’ American swagger, and a confidence that commanded respect. Following the August 1945 bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan issued an unconditional surrender under the Potsdam Declaration. It’s at this point that General MacArthur lead the reformation effort in Japan under the Supreme Command of Allied Powers (SCAP). He saw the people subject to rich landlords and sought to influence the sociopolitical environment in order to promote democratic principles and a better economic future for Japan.

Since WWII the United States has continued to support Japan and ensure its safety and security. As a county, it remains a close ally to the United States.

MacArthur paints a picture of an American leader who used power wisely. He chose to rebuild rather than destroy. He chose to rebuild rather than abuse our defeated enemy. It is unfortunate that in modern academic circles, students tend to become hyper-polarized and forget the responsibilities that come with great power. It’s easy to say “America First,” but to do so without considering global implications is simply ignorant. Our legacy is one that cost thousands of Americans their lives, and we must lead with this in mind.

MacArthur said “Duty, Honor, Country. Those three hallowed words reverently dictate what you ought to be, what you can be, what you will be.” Unshakable ethics, and the unwavering search for victory. These viewpoints are not taught on campus. We are told to shut up, we are told to conform, we are told that believing in something greater than ourselves is “racist” or “antiquated.” As conservatives, it falls upon us to secure and promote the traits of leaders like MacArthur. The issue is that being an activist is one thing, but applying these principles in our personal life is an enormous feat.

A leader does not live a two-faced life, and it is this very challenge that plagues the conservative movement more than anything. It’s easy to fight for conservative principles, but to do so only to live a life which is contrary does nothing but degrade and discredit our platform. Society tends to force social norms onto conservatives, and to conform is the easiest avenue. It’s easy to say yes to the temptations of the world. We must not allow these trends to destroy the movement. We must rally behind our unshakable resolve and fight with determination in every aspect of life. Only then will we live with “Honor” as MacArthur did.

“The world is in a constant conspiracy against the brave. It’s the age-old struggle: the roar of the crowd on the one side, and the voice of your conscience on the other.”

-General Douglas MacArthur