Whitewashing the Vietnam War
Here’s a paradox of the last few decades. As American military power has been less and less effective in achieving Washington’s goals, the rhetoric surrounding that power has grown more and more boastful. The cliché that our armed forces are the best and mightiest in the world — even... Read more
When Richard Nixon Threatened to Nuke Vietnam
This story originally appeared on June 1, 2015. Washington now sees nuclear weapons as a last ditch resort … but it hasn’t always and the Pentagon has been more than happy come up with plans to lob the devastating bombs at America’s enemies. Sometimes, Washington used those plans to... Read more
Michael Cavanaugh Flew in a Secret Air Force
In a seaside resort town on the coast of the gulf of Thailand an old warrior lives out his days, separated from the battles of his past by the insurmountable barrier of time but physically near their setting. Retired U.S. Air force colonel Michael Cavanaugh, 77, was a pilot... Read more
South Vietnamese Troops Almost Fought on Battle Bicycles
This story originally appeared on March 26, 2016. In early 1965, villagers across South Vietnam might have watched a curious military formation race through their hamlets. No, not heavily-armed troops shielded inside armored vehicles, but rural militiamen on bicycles. For nearly a year, authorities in Saigon and their American... Read more
U.S. Commandos Were Fond of Captured AK-47s
This story originally appeared on May 26, 2015. While the Soviet Avtomat Kalashnikova has become the iconic weapon of bad guys in Hollywood blockbusters and big-budget video games, U.S. commandos made good use of the rugged rifles in Vietnam. By the end of the conflict, the American military had... Read more
Why Can’t the World’s Best Military Win Its Wars?
“This time, they think they have it right.” So declared an Associated Press story reporting an upbeat assessment by this country’s top military officer at the end of a five-day visit to Afghanistan earlier this spring. Marine general Joseph Dunford Jr., chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, was... Read more
Recordando la sangrienta Batalla urbana en Hue de la Guerra de Vietnam
El nuevo libro de Mark Bowden «Hue 1968: A Turning Point of the American War in Vietnam» consigue un hecho poco habitual ─aborda un conflicto de una escala y consecuencias terribles y nos permite ver cómo se... Read more
Remembering the Vietnam War’s Bloody Urban Battle of Hue
Mark Bowden’s new history Hue 1968: A Turning Point of the American War in Vietnam pulls off a rare feat — it takes a conflict of terrible scale and consequence, and allows us to see it unfold at the street level, through the eyes of Vietnamese and American soldiers engaged in... Read more
¿Realmente podría haber ganado EE.UU. la guerra de Vietnam?
Mark Moyar, una eminencia en política exterior y militar de EE.UU., tuvo hace poco la oportunidad de actualizar un antiguo argumento sobre la viabilidad de la guerra de Vietnam. Moyar sostiene que la postura histórica sobre la guerra es errónea en varios aspectos y que realmente Estados Unidos podría... Read more
In ’Nam, the U.S. Army Turned Truck Drivers Into Maritime Cops
The 458th Transportation Company wasn’t supposed to be the U.S. Army’s river police force. The soldiers were truck drivers America, and didn’t know much about patrolling hostile waterways. But the Army thought better  —  and in a maddening and unusual story from the Vietnam War, transformed the truckers into... Read more
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