After Tet by Ronald H. Spector
The Bloodiest Year in Vietnam

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Synopsis

In the wake of the TET offensive in March, 1968, Lyndon Johnson announced the cessation of bombing against North Vietnam and his decision not to run for president. Now, in time for the 25th anniversary of the TET offensive, Ronald Spector has written a narrative account of that bloodiest year of the war, a year that largely determined the course and outcome of the war. The battles of 1968 were costly and inconclusive, leading to a diplomatic deadlock that, in the long run, frustrated Americans and worked to the advantage of their patient enemies. Yet, by failing to break the political and military deadlock, these indecisive operations condemned the belligerents to five more years of war. Drawing upon recently declassified military records and personal documents, this book describes the desperate struggle in the jungles, mountains and rice paddies of Vietnam, as both sides mounted increasingly expensive and predictable offensives. Caught between an American government which could never make up its mind and a North Vietnamese government which refused ever to change its mind, thousands of brave men and women gave up their lives to an undefinable end. Spector gives the reader an in-depth look at the experience of the American GI, in combat and "in the rear". Drawing upon first-hand accounts by GIs who were there, as well as his own eye-witness experience as a marine in Vietnam, Spector explores the lesser-known aspects of the war: the deterioration of race relations, the growth of drug culture and the riots in the US military prisons near Saigon and Danang. The vantage point of the rank and file soldier finds its counterpart in Spector's parallel exploration of the experience of the war for the Vietnamese, from the Viet Cong soldier "born in the north to die in the south", to the South Vietnamese soldier, brave and resourceful, but hobbled by an all-pervasive system of corruption and nepotism. This history of the American military experience in Vietnam explores the bloodiest year from all angles - the personal military and political, the American and the Vietnamese. Spector has also written "Advice and Support: The Early Years of the US Army in Vietnam, 1941-1960", "Eagle Against the Sun" and "The American War with Japan".
 

About Ronald H. Spector

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Ronald H. Spector served as a marine in Vietnam. He is the author of numerous books, including Eagle Against the Sun: The American War Against Japan, which won the Theodore and Franklin Roosevelt Prize in Naval History. He is currently a professor of history and international relations at George Washington University.
 
Published October 1, 1992 by Free Press. 400 pages
Genres: History, Travel, War. Non-fiction

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Focusing on the events of the nine months that followed LBJ's announcement of a bombing halt and his decision not to seek reelection, Spector (who was in country as a USMC field historian during this period) characterizes the Vietnam War as being more like WW I than WW II or the Korean conflict, ...

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Spector ( Eagle Against the Sun ) maintains that the months following the Tet offensive (January and February 1968) illuminated the true nature of the war in Vietnam and largely determined its course

Sep 28 1992 | Read Full Review of After Tet: The Bloodiest Year...

Publishers Weekly

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Spector ( Eagle Against the Sun ) maintains that the months following the Tet offensive (January and February 1968) illuminated the true nature of the war in Vietnam and largely determined its course during the five years that followed.

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