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The road not taken : Edward Lansdale and the American tragedy in Vietnam / Max Boot.

Boot, Max, 1968- (author.).

Available copies

  • 23 of 28 copies available at Evergreen Indiana. (Show)
  • 1 of 1 copy available at Greenwood Public Library.

Current holds

0 current holds with 28 total copies.

Location Call Number / Copy Notes Barcode Shelving Location Status Due Date
Greenwood PL - Greenwood 959.704 BOO (Text) 36626103905618 2nd Floor New Adult Available -

Record details

  • ISBN: 9780871409416
  • ISBN: 0871409410
  • Physical Description: l, 717 pages, 24 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations, maps ; 25 cm
  • Edition: First Edition.
  • Publisher: New York, NY : Liveright Publishing Corporation, a division of W.W. Norton & Company, [2018]

Content descriptions

Bibliography, etc. Note:
Includes bibliographical references (pages 611-675) and index.
Formatted Contents Note:
Prologue: The day of the dead: Saigon, November 1-2, 1963 -- Introduction: The misunderstood man -- Ad man (1908-1945). In terrific flux ; Enfant terrible ; An institution run by its inmates -- Colonel Landslide (1945-1954). The time of his life ; In love and war ; The knights templar ; "A most difficult and delicate problem" ; "All-out force or all-out friendship" ; The power broker ; "A real vindication" -- National builder (1954-1956). La guerre sans fronts ; A fortress falls ; "I am Ngo Dinh Diem" ; The chopstick torture ; Pacification ; The viper's nest ; "Stop calling me papa!" -- Washington warrior (1957-1963). Heartbreak hotel ; Guerrilla guru ; A new war begins ; The ambassador who never was ; "The X factor" ; "Worms of the world unite" ; "Washington at its nuttiest" -- Bastard child (1964-1968). "A hell of a mess" ; "Concept for victory" ; Escalation ; The impossible missions force ; Waging peace in a time of war ; To stay or to go? ; Waiting for the second coming ; The long goodbye -- The beaten man (1968-1987). The war at home ; A defeat in disguise ; The abandoned ally ; The family jewels ; The end of the road -- Afterword: Lansdalism in the twenty-first century.
Summary, etc.:
A biography of Edward Lansdale, the CIA operative. Boot chronicles his rise and fall as a proponent of a visionary "hearts and minds" diplomacy in Vietnam who was ultimately overruled by the American military bureaucracy, which favored bombs and troop build-ups over winning the people's trust.
"The legendary Edward Lansdale (1908-1987), a covert operative so roguish that he was said to be the model for Graham Greene's The Quiet American, remains one of the most fascinating yet deeply misunderstood figures of post-1945 American foreign policy. Skeptics have belittled him as a con man ignorant of Asian realities, but a few have hailed him as a prophetic military genius whose yin-yang strategy of hunting down guerrillas while employing a 'hearts and minds' approach to win local support provided a lasting template for U.S. foreign policy. Examining these interpretations but also providing a veritable trove of new facts unearthed from previously classified documents, hidden letters, and interviews, [this book] fundamentally recasts both our vision of Lansdale and America's entire involvement in Vietnam. Max Boot positions Lansdale against the American twentieth century and evocatively charts Lansdale's itinerant upbringing and his transition from unorthodox California ad man to army and OSS officer. Leaving behind his wife and two young sons, Lansdale was sent to Manila in 1945. While becoming embroiled in a passionate love affair with the woman who would become his longtime mistress and later wife, he charted a way for the Filipinos to defend themselves against Communist insurgents by promoting Ramon Magsaysay, a charismatic figure who went from being a lowly congressman to the country's greatest president. Lansdale's singular success convinced the Eisenhower administration to send him to South Vietnam after the ignominious French rout at Dien Bien Phu. Assigned the impossible task of protecting the South from Communist encroachment, Lansdale was initially successful, cultivating the friendship of Ngo Dinh Diem, South Vietnam's new president. Then, increasingly sidelined by elitist generals and blue-blood diplomats, Lansdale watched helplessly as Diem was murdered in an American-supported coup just before Kennedy's own assassination. By 1965, the "hearts and minds" approach to counterinsurgency that Lansdale had so passionately advocated was no longer viable as the United States began a massive Vietnamese buildup. Never a team player, Lansdale became marginalized, watching the humiliating 1975 evacuation of Saigon at a painful remove and dying eleven years later, regarded as a "dirty tricks" specialist of a bygone era. Bringing a tragic complexity to this so-called Ugly American, [this] biography suggests that Vietnam, a conflict whose bitter legacy still haunts American foreign policy, might have been different if only Lansdale's advice had been heeded. With reverberations that continue to play out in Iraq and Afghanistan, The Road Not Taken is a biography of profound historical consequence."--Jacket.
Subject: Lansdale, Edward Geary, 1908-1987.
United States. Central Intelligence Agency > Officials and employees > Biography.
United States. Army > Biography.
United States. Army > Biography.
Intelligence officers > United States > Biography.
Generals > United States > Biography.
Vietnam War, 1961-1975 > United States.
HISTORY > Military > Vietnam War.
Genre: Biographies.
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