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General Douglas MacArthur was born on Jan 26 1880 at Little Rock Barracks Arkansas He died April 5 1964 in Washington DC He was the general who commanded the Southwest Pacific Theatre in World War II administered postwar Japan during the Allied occupation that followed and led United Nations forces during the first nine months of the Korean War MacArthur was the third son of Arthur MacArthur Jr later the armys senior ranking officer and Mary Hardy MacArthur an ambitious woman who strongly influenced Douglas In fact she lived at the West Point Hotel within the West Point grounds for the duration of his schooling at West Point He graduated from West Point in 1903 with the highest honors in his class and served the next 10 years as an aide and a junior engineering officer following this with four years on the general staff He spent several months with the US troops that occupied Veracruz Mex in 1914 There he earned the Medal of Honor for penetrating deep behind Mexican lines and bringing back three locomotives that were to be used to help the US forces advance to Mexico City MacArthur brought back the locomotives but the American occupation of Veracruz turned into a Mexican standoff Neither side would budge and the occupation of Veracruz was quietly phased out On the 42nd Divisions staff in 1917-19 MacArthur held the positions of chief of staff brigade commander and divisional commander during combat operations in France during World War I and in the Rhine occupation that followed During the 1920s he initiated far-reaching reforms while serving as superintendent at West Point served on William Billy Mitchells court-martial held two commands in the Philippines commanded two US corps areas and headed the 1928 American Olympic Committee Having advanced in rank to Brigadier General in 1918 and to Major General seven years later MacArthur was promoted to General when he was selected as the Army chief of staff
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