In the Jaws of History

Overview

"... the ultimate insider's account of the war from the South Vietnamese side, including the appalling story of how the American intervention actually happened." —Washington Post

"This book gives Americans a rare opportunity—the chance to see the Vietnam experience through Vietnamese eyes. Few Vietnamese know their recent history as well as Bui Diem does. And none has told it better." —Ambassador William Jorden

"... well-written and at times illuminating... " —Library Journal

In the Jaws of History is the most ...

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Overview

"... the ultimate insider's account of the war from the South Vietnamese side, including the appalling story of how the American intervention actually happened." —Washington Post

"This book gives Americans a rare opportunity—the chance to see the Vietnam experience through Vietnamese eyes. Few Vietnamese know their recent history as well as Bui Diem does. And none has told it better." —Ambassador William Jorden

"... well-written and at times illuminating... " —Library Journal

In the Jaws of History is the most important book written on the Vietnam War from the viewpoint of the South, from an author who was a senior official of the South Vietnamese government and later ambassador to the U.S.

Indiana University Press

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Active in the Vietnamese nationalist movement, the nephew of Emperor Bao Dai's short-termed prime minister Tran Trong Kim, founder of the Saigon Post , and ultimately South Vietnam's ambassador to the United States, Bui Diem was both a participant in and observer of the post-World War II struggles of Vietnam. Though well written and at times illuminating, his perspective is seldom self-critical and often reveals how detached he was from the decision-making process. This may not be the most satisfying historical expose but it does serve to illustrate his central point: that when the Americans sent in troops they took over the war,exhibiting a blatant disregard of South Vietnamese interests (culminating in the forced acceptance of the Paris Accords). A useful addition to Vietnam collections. Kenneth W. Berg er, Duke Univ. Lib., Durham, N.C.
Library Journal
LJ's reviewer found this firsthand account of Vietnam's post-World War II struggles "well-written and at times illuminating" but also assessed Diem, the country's ambassador to the United States, as "seldom self-critical" and "detached." The author, however, clearly makes his case that when the United States became involved, our troops essentially took over the war with a "blatant disregard of South Vietnamese interests." LJ 9/1/87 Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
The Washington Times
...[I]mportant...gives [Americans] a candid look at ourselves as the Vietnamese saw us.
San Francisco Examiner
Diem has written the most extraordinary tour d'horizon of the Vietnam War I have ever read, a document all the more remakable for its absence of bitterness.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780253213013
  • Publisher: Indiana University Press
  • Publication date: 6/28/1999
  • Series: Vietnam War Era Classics Series
  • Pages: 384
  • Sales rank: 804,457
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

Bui Diem is now a consultant on Vietnamese affairs living in Rockville, Maryland.

David Chanoff is the co-author of several other books on Vietnam.

Indiana University Press

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Table of Contents

In the Jaws of History
Early Years
Secret Societies
The Dia Viet
The August Revolution
British, Chinese, and French
The Terror
In Hiding
The Bao Dai Solution
Alpine Interlude
The French Dig In
The Emperor's Choice
Diem and the Opposition
The Coup
Beyond the Coup
The Government of General Khanh
The Americans Intervene
Dr. Quat and the Generals
Toward a Constitution
Second Step
Ambassador to Washington
A Democratic Constitution
Behind the Scenes
The 1967 Elections
A Change in Mood
Tet Mau Than
The Talks Begin
The Anna Chennault Affair
New President, New Policy
Buying Time
Losing Time
The One-Man Election
Two Showdowns
The Paris Agreement
Last Things
Epilogue
Index

Indiana University Press

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