The War That Never Ends
New Perspectives on the Vietnam War
Published by: The University Press of Kentucky
More than three decades after the final withdrawal of American troops from Southeast Asia, the legacy of the Vietnam War continues to influence political, military, and cultural discourse. Journalists, politicians, scholars, pundits, and others have used the conflict to analyze each of America's subsequent military engagements. Many Americans have observed that Vietnam-era terms such as "cut and run," "quagmire," and "hearts and minds" are ubiquitous once again as comparisons between U.S. involvement in Iraq and in Vietnam seem increasingly appropriate. Because of its persistent significance, the Vietnam War era continues to inspire vibrant historical inquiry.
The eminent scholars featured in The War That Never Ends offer fresh and insightful perspectives on the continuing relevance of the Vietnam War, from the homefront to "humping in the boonies," and from the great halls of political authority to the gritty hotbeds of oppositional activism. The contributors assert that the Vietnam War is central to understanding the politics of the Cold War, the social movements of the late twentieth century, the lasting effects of colonialism, the current direction of American foreign policy, and the ongoing economic development in Southeast Asia.
The seventeen essays break new ground on questions relating to gender, religion, ideology, strategy, and public opinion, and the book gives equal emphasis to Vietnamese and American perspectives on the grueling conflict. The contributors examine such phenomena as the role of women in revolutionary organizations, the peace movements inspired by Buddhism, and Ho Chi Minh's successful adaptation of Marxism to local cultures. The War That Never Ends explores both the antiwar movement and the experiences of infantrymen on the front lines of battle, as well as the media's controversial coverage of America's involvement in the war. The War That Never Ends sheds new light on the evolving historical meanings of the Vietnam War, its enduring influence, and its potential to influence future political and military decision-making, in times of peace as well as war.
Introduction: Why Vietnam Still MattersNo More Vietnams: Historians Debate the Policy Lessons of the Vietnam WarThe United States and Vietnam: The EnemiesWith Friends Like These: Waging War and Seeking "More Flags"The Perspective of a Vietnamese WitnessHo Chi Minh, Confuscianism, and MarxismVietnam during the Rule of Ngo Dinh Diem, 1954-63The Buddhist Antiwar MovementThe Long-Haired Warriors: Women and Revolution in VietnamMilitary Dissent and the Legacy of the Vietnam WarUnpopular Messengers: Student Opposition to the Vietnam WarVietnam Is Here: Student Opposition ot the Vietnam WarThe Media and the Vietnam WarCongress and the Vietnam War: Senate Doves and Their Impact on the WarIn the Valley: The Combat Infantryman and the Vietnam WarThe War That Never Seems to Go AwayA Speech for LBJ with Comments on George W. Bush
"A terrific volume. Anderson and Ernst have assembled a stellar cast of contributors to provide fresh perspectives. The result is a stimulating and authoritative set of essays." -- Fredrik Logevall, coauthor of The First Vietnam War: Colonial Conflict and Cold
"This collection does an excellent job posing and answering the question of why Vietnam still matters and why it will remain the 'war that never ends." -- Kathryn C. Statler, author of Replacing France: The Origins of American Intervention in Vietnam
"What a valuable collection of essays! There is something new to think about in each one. Leading historians approach Vietnam from all angles, with each essay standing independent, yet part of the grand mosaic." -- Lloyd Gardner, coauthor of Iraq and Lessons of Vietnam
"Brings together a distinguished array of scholars who add immeasurably to our understanding of the longest and most complex war in American history." -- Melvin Small, author of Antiwarriors: The Vietnam War and the Battle for America
"Nicely structured, well written, and based on judicious research.... A number of essays add significantly to the literature on the Vietnam War." -- Journal of Military History
"Writings that offer both American and Vietnamese perspectives on the conflict, as well as explore the American antiwar movement and the war's legacy for U.S. foreign policy and military dissent." -- Chronicle of Higher Education
"While many anthologies have a handful of interested articles and a lot of filler, all of the essays in this work are worthwhile. I think a book on the lessons of the Vietnam War every so often is a good idea, especially one I can recommend like this one." -- Journal of American History
"Rather than focusing on policymaking in Washington, the Cold War, or escalation, the essays in The War that Never Ends provide new insights on the Vietnamese perspective and experiences during the war, the fighting of the war, and protest movements." -- Peace & Change
""It will stand as both an enduring tribute to an important historian and a significant scholarly contribution in its own right."-- Journal of Cold War Studies" --
"Includes the role of women in the North Vietnamese war effort, the impact of Buddhism on the course of the Vietnam War, and the tensions between Marxism and Buddhism that appeared to be missed by American policymakers of the time." -- Naval District of Washington Waterline