The 1960s television program LEADERSHIPS SPEAKS featured prominent members of the U.S. military, speaking about defense and other issues. Here a cigar smoking Rear Admiral John S. McCain, Jr. speaks forcefully about leadership, noting that you can "buy many things in life but you can't buy leadership". At the time Admiral McCain was working as the Chief of Information (1962-63), a post he would leave in the summer of 1963 to undertake command of Operation Steel Pike, the largest amphibious landing exercise in peacetime.
John Sidney "Jack" McCain Jr. (January 17, 1911 – March 22, 1981) was a United States Navy admiral, who served in conflicts from the 1940s through the 1970s, including as the Commander, United States Pacific Command.
McCain grew up in Washington, D.C., and graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1931, after which he entered the submarine service. In World War II, he commanded submarines in several theaters of operation, was responsible for sinking several Japanese ships, and was decorated with both the Silver Star and Bronze Star. After the war, he held a variety of commands, specializing in amphibious warfare. He led the 1965 U.S. invasion of the Dominican Republic. He also served in several posts in Washington, including the Legislative Affairs Office and Chief of Naval Information, where he became influential in political affairs. He was a staunch anti-Communist, and was such an advocate of a strong naval presence that he became known as "Mr. Seapower".
During the Vietnam War, McCain was Commander-in-Chief, Pacific Command (CINCPAC), commander of all U.S. forces in the Vietnam theater from 1968 to 1972. He was a stalwart supporter of President Richard Nixon's policy of Vietnamization. McCain played a significant role in the militarization of U.S. policy towards Cambodia, helping to convince Nixon to launch the 1970 Cambodian Incursion and establishing a personal relationship with Cambodian leader Lon Nol. McCain was also a proponent of the 1971 incursion into Laos. McCain retired from the Navy in 1972.
His father, John S. McCain Sr., was also an admiral in the Navy and a naval aviator, and the two were the first father-son pair to achieve four-star rank.His son, John S. McCain III, is a former naval aviator who was a prisoner of war in North Vietnam during McCain's time as CINCPAC, who retired with the rank of captain and then became a United States Senator and the 2008 Republican Party nominee for President of the United States.
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