The Lotus Unleashed: The Buddhist Peace Movement in South Vietnam, 1964-1966 / Edition 1

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During the Vietnam War, Vietnamese Buddhist peace activists made extraordinary sacrifices-including self-immolation-to try to end the fighting. They hoped to establish a neutralist government that would broker peace with the Communists and expel the Americans. Robert J. Topmiller explores South Vietnamese attitudes toward the war, the insurgency, and U.S. intervention, and lays bare the dissension within the U.S. military. The Lotus Unleashed is one of the few studies to illuminate the impact of internal Vietnamese politics on U.S. decision-making and to examine the power of a nonviolent movement to confront a violent superpower.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Tells the story of how the Buddhist-inspired Struggle Movement sought to challenge the legitimacy of the Government of South Vietnam in the middle years of the 1960s." -- Contemporary Buddhism

"A meticulously detailed and eminently readable account of the Buddhist Peace Movement in South Vietnam." -- Register of the Kentucky Historical Society

"A major contribution to the study of the Vietnam War, The Lotus Unleashed explores the Buddhist Uprisings in the Republic of Vietnam and details their important political consequences." -- Spencer C. Tucker

"Serves to remind us of the challenges and pitfalls of American involvement in far-flung conflicts." -- Tacoma News-Tribune

"Argues that the United States failed to prevent a Socialist victory because it never concerned itself with Vietnamese public opinion.... Topmiller's compelling argument makes his book useful in many settings." -- Transformations

"Presents more evidence of the force of Vietnamese nationalism... well-researched and clearly written." -- VVA Veteran

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780813191669
  • Publisher: University Press of Kentucky
  • Publication date: 11/1/2006
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 232
  • Product dimensions: 0.52 (w) x 6.00 (h) x 9.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Robert J. Topmiller is assistant professor of history at Eastern Kentucky University.

Robert J. Topmiller is assistant professor of history at Eastern Kentucky University.

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Table of Contents

Introduction: Vietnamese Buddhism as a Political Force, 1963-1965 1
1 Origins of the Buddhist Crisis of 1966 33
2 Conservative Backlash 53
3 Confrontation in Danang: U.S. Marines and the Buddhist Struggle Movement 71
4 American Reassessment of Its Role in South Vietnam 93
5 Resolution 121
Conclusion: The Movement Defeated? 143
Notes 153
Bibliography 187
Index 203
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