Army

May 24, 2012

Military Intelligence — this week in history May 24, 2012

Fort Huachuca Command History Office

Corps of Intelligence Police infiltrates Bonus Marchers

May 24, 1932

Bonus Veterans of the Bonus Expeditionary Forces at the Capitol

In 1932 the nation was in the midst of the Great Depression. Political tensions grew daily, as people grew more and more desperate and frustrated.

In May, a band of jobless veterans of World War I marched into Washington demanding early payment of the bonuses Congress had promised them for their service in the War. The bonuses were not supposed to be paid until 1945.

The group called themselves the “Bonus Expeditionary Forces,” but became known simply as the “Bonus Marchers.” The unofficial leader of the Marchers, Walter Walters, himself an out-of-work former Army sergeant, tried to maintain order while the group waited for legislation to pass, but by the end of June the movement had swelled to 20,000 tired, hungry, frustrated men who were getting no relief.

Meanwhile, the fear of a communist conspiracy to undermine the government of the United States was also increasing. Then Chief of Staff of the Army, Gen. Douglas MacArthur, was convinced that “the movement was actually far deeper and more dangerous than an effort to secure funds from a nearly depleted federal treasury.” He wasn’t about to sit idly by under this “attack.”

On May 25, 1932, a secret War Department memorandum was sent out to all Corps area intelligence officers directing them to investigate and report regularly concerning “bonus demonstrations by veterans.”

At the same time, the Military Intelligence Division began sending a daily memorandum to the chief of staff describing the current status of the bonus marcher situation within the Nation’s capital. The political implication of the U.S. collecting information on its own civilian population, particularly its veterans, was potentially explosive.

Eventually, MacArthur, acting on orders from the White House, cleared the area using mounted Army troops with sabers and tear gas, leaving behind images of fires and refugee veterans that hit all major news headlines the next morning.

President Herbert Hoover was much criticized for the severity of his eviction and his perceived insensitivity to the plight of the veterans and the nation’s poor. The veterans got their bonuses, four years later. The average check per veteran was about $580; ultimately, nearly $2 billion was distributed to three million World War I veterans.

“This Week in History” is a feature on the Command History Office website.

Those with AKO access can go to https://ikn.army.mil/apps/mi_history/.

To learn more about the 2012 MI Branch and Corps Commemoration, go to the public website, https://www.ikn.army.mil/apps/mi_comm/.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

IMCOM unveils plan for 2025 and beyond

SAN ANTONIO — The U.S. Army Installation Management Command released “IMCOM 2025 and Beyond,” a new campaign plan operationalizing the commanding general’s vision for the organization. This plan provides a roadmap for IMCOM’s future and serves as a change management document that focuses the command’s collective efforts, prioritizes resources and continues the exchange of informatio...
 
 
Command History Office photos

Military Intelligence – Moment in MI history

European Theater Intelligence School opened in Obermmergau Command History Office photos A German language class in session at the intelligence school Author’s Note: The Command History Office has an extensive historical docu...
 
 
2nd Lt. Lacey Roberts

Predator makes maiden flight on U.S. soil for Arizona Air National Guard

2nd Lt. Lacey Roberts The Arizona Air National Guard Predator sits on the runway awaiting taxi and takeoff for its maiden flight at Libby Army Airfield, Fort Huachuca. The sounds of cheers, applause and an occasional “woohoo...
 

 
Army Broadcasting

Army Production premieres ‘iSoldier’ newscast targeting younger Soldiers

Army Broadcasting Soldiers at Defense Media Activity-Army Broadcasting premiered the new iSoldier newscast, a new multi-media program aimed at younger Soldiers, Nov. 7. The newscast from Army Broadcasting at Fort Meade, Marylan...
 
 

Civilian retirees encouraged to obtain new Civil Service Retiree ID Cards

Those whose Civil Service Retiree ID Card, DA Form 1608, looks like the top and need to make an appointment with the Fort Huachuca DEERS/RAPIDS ID Card Section to receive a new Civil Service Retiree Card which now looks like the bottom: Changes in security procedures require visitors to have an ID card which can...
 
 

Special survey designed to improve Soldiers’ quality of life

Office of the Assistant Chief of Staff for Installation Management Installation Services, Soldier and Family Readiness Division. The Army and the RAND Corporation are working together to conduct a Soldier needs assessment survey from September to December at 45 Army installations. Today’s Soldier Survey is available online to randomly selected active duty Soldiers, who will...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin