Before the Quagmire: American Intervention in Laos, by William J. Rust

By William J. Rust

In the last decade previous the 1st U.S. strive against operations in Vietnam, the Eisenhower management sought to defeat a communist-led insurgency in neighboring Laos. even though U.S. overseas coverage within the Fifties targeted totally on threats posed through the Soviet Union and the People's Republic of China, the yank engagement in Laos developed from a small chilly warfare skirmish right into a superpower disagreement close to the tip of President Eisenhower's moment time period. eventually, the yankee event in Laos foreshadowed a number of the errors made through the us in Vietnam within the 1960s.

In ahead of the Quagmire: American Intervention in Laos, 1954--1961, William J. Rust delves into key coverage judgements made in Washington and their implementation in Laos, which turned first steps at the route to the broader struggle in Southeast Asia. Drawing on formerly untapped archival assets, earlier than the Quagmire records how useless and occasionally self-defeating information to Laotian anticommunist elites mirrored basic misunderstandings concerning the country's politics, historical past, and tradition. the yank aim of forestalling a communist takeover in Laos used to be extra hindered by way of divisions between Western allies and U.S. officers themselves, who at one aspect supplied relief to either the Royal Lao govt and to a Laotian normal who plotted to overthrow it. earlier than the Quagmire is a brilliant research of a severe interval of chilly battle background, filling a spot in our knowing of U.S. coverage towards Southeast Asia and America's access into the Vietnam War.

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Extra resources for Before the Quagmire: American Intervention in Laos, 1954-1961

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Chapter 4 DAY-TO-DAY OPERATIONS OF THE ADVISORY TEAM In one of his first letters home to his parents, dated August 14, 1967, LT Clarke described the Huong Hoa district, the plight of the Bru and the Khe Sanh area: I have been on the job now for about 10 days. Just to ease your minds I haven’t had a VC round fired at me yet nor have I fired a round. Saturday night the Marines shook us up a little bit. About 2300 we were sitting playing hearts when an arty round went off very near our compound. After 30 seconds of pandemonium we were all in our bunkers awaiting the attack.

We were a little out of range with our radio. Locally we were okay, but we could not talk to Quang Tri. I did scrounge up a 292 antenna and that helped out a bit. We could talk to Quang Tri at night and sometimes during the day. Communications with our parent headquarters were intermittent at best. I didn’t have any trouble getting things flown up to us, as I had made friends with many of the C-123 and C-130 pilots that flew from Danang to Khe Sanh. You can make a lot of friends with the pilots by giving them an AK-47.

John came from a family that had lived in Texas since before the Republic and had a proud heritage of military service by many members of his family.

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