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Ending the Vietnam War: A History of America's Involvement in and Extrication from the Vietnam War Paperback – February 11, 2003
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From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
Top Customer Reviews
Personally, I found this book is an incredibly involving recount and analysis of the Vietnam War. I thought I had a fairly in-depth understanding of the Vietnam War beforehand, but quickly discovered that there was so much I was never aware of. Because Kissinger was part of the inner circle of powers that shaped the Vietnam conflict, he writes from a vantage point only an insider can lay claim to. The competing egos, opposing political agendas, infighting, confusion, hope and desperation-all these factors played a part in the conflict and Kissinger does a wonderful job of presenting how each influenced the Vietnam War.
I picked up this book one weekend and could not put it down. If you're looking for an engaging reading on the Vietnam War, you cannot go wrong with this selection.
Henry Kissinger has written a new book, "Ending the VietnamWar; a History of America's Involvement in and Extrication from the Vietnam War", (Simon and Schuster) that documents his version of the events leading up to American withdrawal from Indochina. And while a large part of the book is drawn from his previously published memoirs, this new book on Vietnam provides fresh information and historical material that make it must reading for anyone seriously interested in the history of war in Vietnam.
As usual, Kissinger writes cogently about his perspective of history. He's as feisty as ever, too. While he acknowledges that the Nixon and Ford administrations (in which he played crucial roles) made their shares of mistakes, he doesn't hesitate to take on his legion of critics. In fact, Kissinger cedes nothing to his enemies in the government and the media who continue to lambast him as some sinister, Dr. Strangelove-like manipulator of American foreign policy. And he laments the fact that the war in Vietnam has become a scar, as it were, on his record as a statesman:
"A balanced judgment on Vietnam continues to elude us--and therefore the ability to draw lessons from a national tragedy which America inflicted on itself," Kissinger writes in the Foreword to his new book. "As a result, Vietnam has become the black hole of American historical memory.Read more ›
Regardless of one's opinions of Dr. Kissinger, his contribution to the field of political science: diplomacy, foreign policy and international relations, is unquestionable. During his long and often tumultuous career, Dr. K has met with the most notable global powers and has been at the fore of many of the most pressing political issues of the last forty years. Perhaps the most important and certainly most noted were his negotiations to end the Vietnam War.
In this one volume, taken from his memoirs and supplemented with new information, Kissinger examines not only the Nixon administrations attempts at finding a resolution to the conflict, but also discusses the long history of American entanglement in the conflict.
Once the historical basis is firmly in place, Kissinger delves into the negotiations between himself and high-level North Vietnamese cadre, namly Le Duc Tho.
Dr. K's discussion and analysis of the negotiations not only well illustrates the steps of American foreign policy (interesting in their own right) but allows the reader to see deeper into the Vietnam Conflict and why it took so long to conclude.
Kissinger also discusses his controversial role in the bombing of Cambodia and Laos. Much has been written to condemn Dr. K, and although his analysis of the bombing is enlightening, the work does little in the way of vindication.
All in all, Kissinger provides a very good source documenting his participation in the Vietnam War and the subsequent de-escalation, as well as illustrating the process of high-level negotiations in global diplomacy.
I can't say it was a bad book. I learned a lot. I finished it with a new appreciation for the difficult situation we were in. It changed some of my opinions about this war and reinforced others. But, a history of America's involvement in the war it was not. There is anectotal information on the broader military and political context at best. Most of the book is a meticulous account of the negotiations between Kissinger and the N. Vietnamese.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Excellent book on a war I fought in as an infantry lieutenantPublished 19 months ago by James Wolfe
this book came highly recommended and is very powerful reading. if you want some great insight into the Vietnam War this is worth readingPublished 20 months ago by GR
The book is well written with much insight from a stateman that deeply involved in the Vietnam War. I highly recommend the book to anyone want to learn about the war. Read morePublished on November 11, 2011 by Joe
As an avid reader of Military History, Vietnam in particular, I thought Dr. Kissinger's book was one of the best i have read. His insight was great and it was very well written. Read morePublished on September 20, 2009 by Gene Ammirata
This is what happened as told by someone on the inside. People interested in history will find this book invaluable. Read morePublished on March 23, 2005 by it
if you want the evil truth about Dr K and how he undermined the 1968 peace talks, read "No Peace, No Honor: Nixon, Kissinger, and Betrayal in Vietnam" by Larry Berman. Read morePublished on March 1, 2005 by 1
Wow, this book lays everything out and then some and gives a basis for understanding what happened there since the 1950's!! Read morePublished on October 13, 2004 by Margaret C. Jacob