The Secret War Against Hanoi

The Secret War Against Hanoi

3.69 (53 ratings by Goodreads)
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In 1963, a frustrated President Kennedy turned to the Pentagon for help in carrying out subversive operations against North Vietnam- a job the CIA had not managed to handle effectively. Thus was born the Pentagon's Special Operations Group(SOG). Under the cover name"Studies and Observation Group," SOG would, over the next eight years, dispatch numerous spies to North Vietnam, create a triple-cross deception program, wage psychological warfare by manipulating North Vietnamese POW's and kidnapped citizens, and stage deadly assaults on enemy soldiers traveling the Ho Chi Minh Trail. Written by the country's leading expert on SOG, here is the story of that covert war-one that would have both spectacular and disastrous results.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 412 pages
  • 134.62 x 200.66 x 30.48mm | 340.19g
  • HarperCollins
  • New York, NY, United States
  • English
  • New edition
  • New edition
  • facsimiles, illustrations, maps, portraits
  • 0060932538
  • 9780060932534
  • 1,171,504

Review quote

"This is an enormously important book, meticulously researched by a skilled author [and]. . .detailing the most complete and certainly the most horrifying story yet told of our attempt to wage covert special operations against North Vietnam?.The future security of the United States and our allies will depend in large measure on how well we have learned the lessons set forth in "The Secret War Against Hanoi."-- Caspar W. Weinberger, former Secretary of Defense"I am pleased that I encouraged Dick Shultz to write this book. It is a thorough and unprecedented analysis of some of the Vietnam War's most closely held secrets. I wish this book of lessons learned had been available thirteen years ago as we set up the United States Operations Command."-- General Wayne Downing, former commander-in-chief, U.S. Special Operations Command"We owe Professor Shultz a debt of gratitude for having undertaken this massive research. SOG's unhappy lifetime has lessons for us today, and Shultz spells them out succinctly. I urge that "The Secret War Against Hanoi be made required reading [for] new officers in CIA's Operations Directorate." -- B. Hugh Tovar, former chief of CIA's Covert Action Staff""The Secret War Against Hanoi is an important book. Just when we think we know it all, this book reminds us how much more there is to learn about the roots of our tragic involvement in Vietnam."-- Seymour M. Hersh, Pulitzer Prize?winning author"For those striving to understand what went wrong in Vietnam, Dr. Shultz has cast light on an important piece of the puzzle. In laying all this out, Dr. Shultz gives policymakers a virtual checklist of dos and don'ts for covert action. Let's hope they pay attention."-- Frank Carlucci, former Secretary of Defense"A fascinating account. This will answer a load of questions and raise another load."? Jody Powell, former press secretary to President Carter"An intriguing recitation and analysis of a heretofore super-secret covert operation against the North Vietnamese....Illuminating, "The Secret War Against Hanoi reveals the dirty underside of the only war we lost." -- Lt. General Bernard E. ?Mick? Trainor, USMC (Ret.), former SOG operative and military correspondent for the "New York Times."With impressive research, Richard Shultz has documented how a secret war, waged with the best of intentions, can be bungled from top to bottom. It's an eye-opener."-- Douglas Waller, author of "The Commandos"Well researched, well documented, well analyzed--the very best, most accurate story of what went on in the covert war against North Vietnam. The sharp eye of Shultz finds everything, misses nothing, among theunbelievable tales to be told. We haven't seen anything like this!"-- General John R. Galvin, Dean, Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy and former Supreme Allied Commander Europe"Richard Shultz has written one of the most important books about the Vietnam War to be published. But "The Secret War Against Hanoi is not just an outstanding interpretation of a key part of America's history, it also presents lessons directly relevant to the present day."-- James Adams, former bureau chief for the "Sunday Times of London"It took a scholar and historian of Dick Shultz's ability and determination to seek out the information from primary sources and to weave the experiences of operators and policymakers into a coherent and very readable book about the covert war against Hanoi. This book is invaluable to current and future national security policymakers, both civilian and military. Reading Shultz's book will give them valuable perspective."-- Lt. General James T. Scott, USA (Ret.), director, National Security Program, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University"A long overdue book about courageous men fighting two wars'one against the North Vietnamese; and, the other against conventional military leaders who failed to appreciate their potential. Fortunately the military today has benefited from their sacrifices."-- General Edward C. Meyer, former Chief of Staff, U.S.Army""The Secret War Against Hanoi is a wonderful and extraordinarily interesting book. There is a revelation on every page."-- John Train, founder of "Paris Review"Richard Shultz should be commended for pulling off a difficult task: a thoroughly researched, highly analytical study that both informs and fascinates. Special operations, especially within the context of a broader military campaign or war strategy, are rarely subject to the kind of objective analysis and assessment offered in "The Secret War Against Hanoi. The debates surrounding the conduct of the war against North Vietnam remain as contentious as when the war was fought: Shultz's study provides an invaluable contribution to the literature by not only describing the extent of covert operations carried out by the United States, but, more importantly, by providing much needed context. In so doing, his study belongs on the shelves on all those seeking to futher their understanding not just of the war in Southeast Asia, but of special operations in particular." -- Senator John McCain"Lucid, sweeping, and utterly readable, Dr. Shultz's impeccably researched book exposes the calamitous brew of overcautiousness, second guessing, and flat-out poor choices that would contribute in no small way to the Vietnam debacle. An eye opener for anyone who does not comprehend the necessity for covert operations during wartime."-- Stephanie Silber, producer,Pacific Street Films"At last there is an outstanding book on the operational and strategic value of special operations forces. Richard Shultz's "Secret War Against Hanoi is not only superb history, it fills the gaping void in public and official understanding of why special operations really matter. There are some uncomfortable truths about unduly 'regular' American military minds in this book. Shultz has made a major contribution to the national security. Read "The Secret War Against Hanoi!"-- Colin S. Gray, Professor of International Politics and Director of the Centre for Security Studies, University of Hull, and European Director of the National Institute for Public Policy"An impressively researched and readable account of the use and misuse of covert activity against Hanoi during the Vietnam War. . . . Sheds much light on the functions of special operations and the difficulties of waging war in Vietnam."--Kirkus Reviews"Beyond the politics of covert action, Shultz's treasure trove of a book is most fascinating as an operational text, describing intelligence cons and deception games worthy of John LeCarre at this best."--The Washington Post"[T]his fascinating and detailed work . . . lifts the veil on psychological operations, sabotage and other dirty tricks aimed against North Vietnam. . . . Shultz weaves a compelling tale of super secret Americancommandoes and operatives."--The Baltimore Sun"[An] illuminating account. . . . Impressively researched and soberly presented, though not so soberly as to smother the passion that Mr. Shultz has for this subject. The book shows above all that there are still things to be learned not just about clandestine warfare but more generally about the Vietnam War."The New York Times
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Rating details

53 ratings
3.69 out of 5 stars
5 25% (13)
4 34% (18)
3 32% (17)
2 6% (3)
1 4% (2)
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