Shoup, David

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Shoup, David (1904–1983), general and Marine Corps commandant.The son of an Indiana farmer, Shoup graduated from DePauw University in 1926 with an ROTC commission. After a month as a lieutenant in the U.S. Army Reserve, he was transferred to the Marines. He served on expeditionary duty in Tientsin, China, in 1927–28, and returned to China on various duties, 1934–36. In 1941, he accompanied a Marine brigade to Iceland.

In the Pacific during World War II, Colonel Shoup was twice wounded in action and won the Congressional Medal of Honor for rallying his troops and leading a charge at Betio atoll, Tarawa, in the Gilbert Islands in 1943. He was chief of staff of the 2nd Marine Division in the battles of Saipan and Tinian.

After the war, Shoup served in logistical, fiscal, and training positions. In 1956, he led an investigation of the drowning of six Marine recruits on a disciplinary night march at Parris Island, South Carolina. President Dwight D. Eisenhower appointed him Marine Corps commandant in 1960. Always outspoken, Shoup criticized attempts to indoctrinate troops with anticommunism, chastised the services for overemphasizing their own interests, argued against introducing U.S. ground forces in the crises with Cuba in 1961 and 1962, and advised against a massive buildup of U.S. forces in Vietnam. In retirement after 1963, he became an outspoken critic of the Vietnam War.
[See also Cuba, U.S. Military Involvement in; World War II, U.S. Naval Operations in: The Pacific.]


David M. Shoup , The Marines in China, 1927–1928, 1987.
Robert Buzzanco and and Asad Ismij , Informed Dissent: Three Generals and the Viet Nam War, 1988.

John Whiteclay Chambers II

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Shoup, David