A Better War

A Better War : The Unexamined Victories and Final Tragedy of America's Last Years in Vietnam

3.97 (324 ratings by Goodreads)
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Description

Neglected by scholars and journalists alike, the years of conflict in Vietnam from 1968 to 1975 offer surprises not only about how the war was fought, but about what was achieved. Drawing from thousands of hours of previously unavailable (and still classified) tape-recorded meetings between the highest levels of the American military command in Vietnam, A Better War is an insightful, factual, and superbly documented history of these final years. Through his exclusive access to authoritative materials, award-winning historian Lewis Sorley highlights the dramatic differences in conception, conduct, and-at least for a time-results between the early and later years of the war. Among his most important findings is that while the war was being lost at the peace table and in the U.S. Congress, the soldiers were winning on the ground. Meticulously researched and movingly told, A Better War sheds new light on the Vietnam War.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 544 pages
  • 134 x 202 x 34mm | 498.95g
  • San Diego, CA, United States
  • English
  • Reprint
  • Illustrations, unspecified
  • 0156013096
  • 9780156013093
  • 399,966

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"An important new book...Mr. Sorley has provided a major challenge to the conventional wisdom." -- Washington Times
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Back cover copy

The hot book among Iraq strategists. --David Ignatius, The Washington Post
Lewis Sorley s important and influential book A Better War sheds light on the often neglected final years in Vietnam from 1968 to 1975 and revises our knowledge of the war and its conclusion. Drawing on his exclusive access to still classified tape-recorded meetings of the highest levels of military command in Vietnam, Sorley highlights the dramatic differences in the conception, the conduct, and--at least for a time--the results after General Creighton Abrams succeeded to the top military post in 1968. Meticulously researched and movingly told, A Better War is an insightful history and a great human drama of purposeful and principled service in the face of an agonizing succession of lost opportunities--and it is never as important as it is now.
"A comprehensive and long-overdue examination of the immediate post-Tet offensive years." --The New York Times

"The book is the missing link in the history of the Vietnam War. It opens the old arguments up again and shows them in a new light." --Strategic Review

"[A Better War] is an outstanding piece of work, historically important with its use of new evidence, intellectually challenging with its suggestion of new interpretations of events, and highly readable." --Army
Lewis Sorley, a third-generation graduate of West Point, also holds a doctorate from Johns Hopkins University. He has served in the U.S. Army, on staff at the Pentagon, and later as a senior civilian official of the Central Intelligence Agency. He lives in Maryland."
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Review quote

"Sorley's book is as important a reexamination of the operational course of the war as Robert McNamara's In Retrospect is of the conflict's moral and political history."--Publishers Weekly (starred review) "An extraordinary piece of work that is bound to become a valuable part of historical documentation about the war in Vietnam. The first to set the record straight concerning the outcome of that conflict."--H. Norman Schwarzkopf, General, U.S. Army, Retired
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About Lewis Sorley

A third-generation graduate of West Point, Lewis Sorley also holds a doctorate from Johns Hopkins University. He has served in the U.S. Army, on staff at the Pentagon, and later as a senior civilian official in the Central Intelligence Agency. He is the author of Thunderbolt: General Creighton Abrams and the Army of His Times, an excerpt of which won the 1991 Harold Peterson Prize as the year's best scholarly article on American military history, and of Honorable Warrior: General Harold K. Johnson and the Ethics of Command. He lives in the Washington, D.C., area.
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Rating details

324 ratings
3.97 out of 5 stars
5 34% (111)
4 39% (127)
3 19% (63)
2 4% (12)
1 3% (11)
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