The Making of a Quagmire: America and Vietnam During the Kennedy EraDavid Halberstam
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For all the legions of books published on the Vietnam War, none surpasses one of the earliest and most prescient-David Halberstam's The Making of a Quagmire. Halberstam's shrewd observations of the complexities of Vietnamese politics and the obstacles the U.S. faced early in achieving its goals deeply inform the entire book. A brilliant study that has lost none of its power despite the history that unfolded after its publication, Halberstam's book deserves to be read again and again. — Ellen Fitzpatrick, Carpenter Professor of History, University of New Hampshire Few journalists did more to educate Americans about the harsh realities of the Vietnam war than David Halberstam. The Making of a Quagmire offers numerous insights into the conflict between the American press and the U.S. government that began in those years and ultimately played a major role in the war. The book is a valuable introduction to Vietnam in the era of John F. Kennedy and Ngo Dinh Diem. — George C. Herring, University of Kentucky As it did in 1965, Halberstam's book will provoke vigorous discussion. Readers will marvel at how the United States allowed itself to be so misled in South Vietnam and will use the book to make connections to more recent events in the Middle East. — Robert Dallek Halberstam's wartime work will last not just because of its quality and its importance but because it established a new mode of journalism, one with which Americans are now so familiar that it's difficult to remember that someone had to invent it. — George Packer The New Yorker