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Eisenhower Memorial Commission Moves to Delay NCPC Application

March 15, 2012

After many months of public debate and behind the scenes interaction, the Eisenhower Memorial Commission (EMC) announced yesterday that it is asking the National Park Service to delay its application to the National Capital Planning Commission (NCPC), originally scheduled for April 5. Another date for consideration of  Frank Gehry’s design has not been set. The Eisenhower family called for such a delay at the end of 2011 – but we welcome this belated recognition that the EMC’s proposal is not ready for review.

In another development, the U.S. House Subcommittee on National Parks, Forests and Public Lands is holding a hearing on “The Proposed Dwight D. Eisenhower Memorial” on Tuesday, March 20, 2012 at 10:00 am in Room 1324 of the Longworth House Office Building. I will be testifying on behalf of the Eisenhower family. We are delighted that the relevant committees in the House are focusing their attention on this issue. Congressmen Frank WolfDarrell IssaDan Lungren and Aaron Schock have all publicly sent letters to the NCPC. Numerous members of the Senate have offered their support, and this issue has also been brought to the attention of key DC government officials. We are grateful to these elected officials for their attention and leadership. On a personal note, we have also been deeply gratified by the public response that has brought us to this point.

While some people have voiced displeasure that a hearing is now underway, this should not be feared by anyone who cares about the Eisenhower Memorial.  Testimony and hearings are a vital step in securing public confidence in the process and allowing individuals of differing views to get their comments on the record.

My testimony will be posted on this site on Tuesday, March 20th.

11 Comments leave one →
  1. March 15, 2012 5:03 pm

    This is understandable. The Barefoot Ike is is not the historic figure that Americans and and those he helped free around the world imagine. Gehry is a fine designer and architect. But on this one he simply screwed-up. Perhaps his pride or ego or both prevent him and his surrogates on the Commission to admit a mistake.

  2. PAUL J. HANSEN permalink
    March 15, 2012 5:38 pm

    A delay is certainly in order. Hopefully this gives the EMC and the park service an opportunity to start fresh and step away from it’s prior commitment and find a design that more appropriately reflects the significant contributions General Eisenhower made in war and peace

  3. Richard Bono permalink
    March 15, 2012 6:53 pm

    I that this this design seems to be on the way to be rethought. I think it ought to be completely rethought. I’ve concluded that the site itself is just much to big. To begin, with it’s completely out of scale with Ike’s original intentions, as I understand them. If the site is significantly wrong, then how can we ever expect the design to be right?

    My solution would be to create two new sites at the WW II Memorial in the forested areas on either side of the arched pavilions of the Atlantic and the Pacific theaters. Here, on the Atlantic Pavilion side, to have some sort of presently unprogrammed sculpture, or sculptural grouping, of the chief military leaders, Ike prominent among them….as was done by Frederick Hart, at the Vietnam Memorial. I not only think but I know, that Ike would have loved to be remembered with his men…the men of the “Great Generation”, whom he led.

  4. Cheri permalink
    March 18, 2012 4:52 pm

    He had so many dimensions. To leave out such significant ones, defeats the purpose of a memorial.

    As a child of Holocaust survivor, I particularly am honored and what those parts of his legacy remembered. They tell a continous story from his pre-WWII support for rights, to post-WWII. Also the continous story of courage & strength & leadership in many difficult moments – which includes the military leadership.

    Better to get things right, than to rush. It matters to everyone who will ever visit, to see the most meaningful monument possible.

  5. March 19, 2012 7:04 am

    Great news!… And hopefully it will lead to a new and more appropriate design for this important memorial.

  6. Kay Leslie Ackman permalink
    March 19, 2012 9:59 am

    General/President Eisenhower personally entered into the horrific site, after liberating remaining victims of Nazi attrocities, for the purpose of serving as an eye-witness and to preserve the truth so the truth would not be denied, diminished, nor dissipated. Were it not for his successful efforts in making and preserving documentary evidence of – what we now call -the Holocaust, the truth would have slipped into oblivion, along with the victims.
    The memorial to this great man must preserve the truth of his memory and not a diminished version. Particularly, it should be noted that the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum and the Eisenhower Memorial are linked through historical fact – and through the documentation of history. As a person who had the honor to make some small contribution to the planning of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, I support all efforts to sharpen the focus of the memorial to President/General Eisenhower to preserve the fullness of truth concerning this man whom I honor as a preserver of the memoriy of my own family.

  7. Ken Price permalink
    March 20, 2012 9:09 am

    I had the honor to be an operations officer for Dwight Eisenhower’s funeral. I saw, first hand, the entire world arriving to honor “the general”, “the former president”, and “the man who freed Europe”. Everyone involved paid particular attention to every detail. We all knew that what we were doing was being viewed by the world. And though he didn’t run through blazing gunfire in Europe, he did show the most extreme courage in our darkest hours. I have not seen a single statue of America’s hero’s, from the revolution through today, that has a barefoot boy to represent our true patriots. So, rather than attempt to ignor the bitter aspects of war, preserve those inspirational moments that preserved our great country. “All true American’s love the sting of battle”, George Patton. Freedom is costly, in blood, sweat and tears…remember

  8. Mrs. Donald Manning permalink
    March 20, 2012 7:20 pm

    FIRE THE DESIGNER!
    I would be ashamed to see our hero treated in this manner.Eisenhower was not as Mr. Gehry dipected him. History has placed Eisenhower in the annals with our greatest Americans.
    Show him in the proper way and stop all this PC stuff.

  9. Sherwin Greenberg permalink
    March 21, 2012 2:03 am

    Liberals have infected every part of government this must end now! There must be some way to cut off funding for this Gehry Garbage!

  10. Ed Salazar permalink
    March 21, 2012 7:14 am

    Go back to the drawing board, PLEASE!

    I was deeply disappointed to see the proposed design of the memorial. It seemed so impersonal, so sterile, and so cold — very unlike the man it is intended to honor. Let’s see a design that communicates to visitors the inner strength, the humanity, the humility and the visionary qualities of this unique American leader, whose important role in the history of our nation need never and should never be colored, overshadowed, or rewritten by prevailing political ideologies.

  11. Colum Connolly permalink
    April 14, 2013 1:29 am

    Those who are best qualified to speak the truth about General and President Eisenhower are the nobodies on the bottom rung of the ladder of survival in the evolution of this present world society today. Where the poorly paid impoverished make the popular fashion things for the greatly rich and greatly self-elevated to buy.

    I grew up amongst lowly vistas of the blitzed out linen mills of Belfast after WW2. But the folk memory I carried of the General and President Eisenhower always inspired hope of the good man who would always stop by the side of the road and call out “What are you doing down there?”

    I think I was trying to say something like this.

    Colum “Colm” Connolly

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