Westmoreland by Lewis Sorley
The General Who Lost Vietnam

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Mr. Sorley has stripped away Westmoreland's after-the-fact mythologizing, leaving us with a deeply unflattering portrait of an army careerist who unintentionally did much damage to an institution—and a country—that he loved dearly.
-WSJ online

Synopsis

Westmoreland is a great book, a classic by an author who knows his subject well and tells the story without hesitation.” — General Donn A. Starry, U.S. Army (ret.), Commander, Army Training and Doctrine Command (1977–1981)

Is it possible that the riddle of America’s military failure in Vietnam has a one-word, one-man answer?

Unless and until we understand General William Westmoreland, we will never understand what went wrong in Vietnam. An Eagle Scout at fifteen, First Captain of his West Point class, Westmoreland fought in two wars and became Superintendent at West Point. Then he was chosen to lead the war effort in Vietnam for four crucial years.

He proved a disaster. He could not think creatively about unconventional warfare, chose an unavailing strategy, stuck to it in the face of all opposition, and stood accused of fudging the results when it mattered most. In this definitive portrait, Lewis Sorley makes a plausible case that the war could have been won were it not for Westmoreland. The tragedy of William Westmoreland carries lessons not just for Vietnam, but for the future of American leadership.

Westmoreland is essential reading from a masterly historian.

 

About Lewis Sorley

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Lewis Sorley is a third-generation graduate of the United States Military Academy who also holds a Ph.D. from the Johns Hopkins University. He served in Vietnam, and in the Pentagon in the offices of Secretary of Defense James R. Schlesinger and Army Chief of Staff General William C. Westmoreland. He also taught at West Point and the Army War College. He is the author of five highly-regarded works of military history.
 
Published October 11, 2011 by Mariner Books. 432 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History, War. Non-fiction
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WSJ online

Above average
Reviewed by Max Boot on Oct 04 2011

Mr. Sorley has stripped away Westmoreland's after-the-fact mythologizing, leaving us with a deeply unflattering portrait of an army careerist who unintentionally did much damage to an institution—and a country—that he loved dearly.

Read Full Review of Westmoreland: The General Who... | See more reviews from WSJ online

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