Vietnam’s Forgotten Army: Heroism and Betrayal in the ARVN chronicles the lives of Pham Van Dinh and Tran Ngoc Hue, two of the brightest young stars in the Army of the Republic of Vietnam (ARVN). Both men fought with valor in a war that seemed to have no end, exemplifying ARVN bravery and determination that is largely forgotten or ignored in the West. However, while Hue fought until he was captured by the North Vietnamese Army and then endured thirteen years of captivity, Dinh surrendered and defected to the enemy, for whom he served as a teacher in the reeducation of his former ARVN comrades.
An understanding of how two lives that were so similar diverged so dramatically provides a lens through which to understand the ARVN and South Vietnam’s complex relationship with Americas government and military. The lives of Dinh and Hue reflect the ARVNs battlefield successes, from the recapture of the Citadel in Hue City in the Tet Offensive of 1968, to Dinhs unheralded role in the seizure of Hamburger Hill a year later. However, their careers expose an ARVN that was over-politicized, tactically flawed, and dependent on American logistical and firepower support. Marginalized within an American war, ARVN faced a grim fate as U.S. forces began to exit the conflict. As the structure of the ARVN/U.S. alliance unraveled, Dinh and Hue were left alone to make the most difficult decisions of their lives.
Andrew Wiest weaves historical analysis with a compelling narrative, culled from extensive interviews with Dinh, Hue, and other key figures. Once both military superstars, Dinh is viewed by a traitor by many within the South Vietnamese community, while Hue, an expatriate living in northern Virginia, is seen as a hero who never let go of his ideals. Their experiences and legacies mirror that of the ARVNs rise and fall as well as the tragic history of South Vietnam.
In this magisterial book, a monument of history and biography that was awarded the National Book Award and the Pulitzer Prize for nonfiction, renowned journalist Neil Sheehan tells the story of Lieutenant Colonel John Paul Vann–"the one irreplaceable American in Vietnam"–and of the tragedy that destroyed that country and the lives of so many Americans.
Outspoken and fearless, John Paul Vann arrived in Vietnam in 1962, full of confidence in America's might and right to prevail. A Bright Shining Lie reveals the truth about the war in Vietnam as it unfolded before Vann's eyes: the arrogance and professional corruption of the U.S. military system of the 1960s, the incompetence and venality of the South Vietnamese army, the nightmare of death and destruction that began with the arrival of the American forces. Witnessing the arrogance and self-deception firsthand, Vann put his life and career on the line in an attempt to convince his superiors that the war should be fought another way. But by the time he died in 1972, Vann had embraced the follies he once decried. He went to his grave believing that the war had been won.
A haunting and critically acclaimed masterpiece, A Bright Shining Lie is a timeless account of the American experience in Vietnam–a work that is epic in scope, piercing in detail, and told with the keen understanding of a journalist who was actually there. Neil Sheehan' s classic serves as a stunning revelation for all who thought they understood the war.
From the Hardcover edition.
Willbanks also maintains that the Communists laid siege to a Marine combat base two weeks prior to the Tet Offensive& mdash;known as the Battle of Khe Sanh& mdash;to distract the United States. It is his belief that these two events are intimately linked, and in his concise and compelling history, he presents an engaging portrait of the conflicts and singles out key problems of interpretation. Willbanks begins with a historical overview of the events leading up to the offensive, the attack itself, and the consequent battles of Saigon, Hue, and Khe Sahn. He continues with a critical assessment of the main themes and issues surrounding the offensive, and concludes with excerpts from American and Vietnamese documents, maps and chronologies, an annotated list of resources, and a short encyclopedia of key people, places, and events.
Written by an officer in the Republic of Vietnam Armed Forces, this poignant memoir seeks to clarify the nuances of South Vietnam's defeat. From the age of 12, Van Nguyen Duong watched as the conflict affected his home, family, village and friends. He discusses not only the day-to-day hardships of wartime but his postwar forced relocation and eventual imprisonment. A special focus is on the anguish caused by the illusive reality of Vietnamese independence.
The political forces at work north and south, the hardships suffered by RVNAF soldiers after the 1975 U.S. withdrawal, and the effects of reunification on the Vietnamese people are discussed.
During the war in Vietnam, the North Vietnamese communists had to place their trust in the oldest and most reliable tool of warfare: the individual soldier; America believed that firepower, lgoistics, and technology would be sufificent for victory. The North Vietnamese won. INSIDE THE VC AND THE NVA, written by two veterans with six-and-a-half years combined experience, shows how.
A Dual Main Selection of the Military Book Club
Here, culled from extensive interviews and research, is the achingly dramatic story of the end of the Vietnam War as told from both sides of the conflict. Included are never-before-revealed accounts from people of every level involved in the war: NVA and Viet Cong soldiers, U.S. embassy personnel, guerilla commanders, civilians, generals, double agents? and leaders from both sides including former president Gerald Ford and North Vietnamese military commander General Tran Van Tra.
From the first hints of the final offensive from the north, to the gut-wrenching hours before the fall of Saigon when a brave pilot defied his orders to return to base and rescued the last five Marines from the rooftop of the U.S. embassy, Goodnight Saigon is an unforgettable narrative of war, and those who live with its aftermath.