Rethinking Camelot: JFK, the Vietnam War, and U.S. Political Culture

Rethinking Camelot: JFK, the Vietnam War, and U.S. Political Culture

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by Noam Chomsky
     
 

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This book is a thorough analysis of John F. Kennedy's role in the U.S. invasion of Vietnam and a probing reflection of the elite political culture that allowed and encouraged the Cold War.

Overview

This book is a thorough analysis of John F. Kennedy's role in the U.S. invasion of Vietnam and a probing reflection of the elite political culture that allowed and encouraged the Cold War.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Veteran critic/activist Chomsky ( Deterring Democracy ) analyzes the issue most prominently posed in Oliver Stone's film JFK : was President Kennedy a secret dove whose assassination extinguished a chance to end the Vietnam War? Those willing to follow Chomsky's dry, prosecutorial style will find strong arguments against Kennedy mythologists. He provides context for the Vietnam War with a history of U.S. ``economic warfare'' against ``lesser breeds'' and the roots of world inequality. Then, he analyzes the record of planning the war from 1961 to 1964. He notes that studies of the Vietnamese countryside showed overwhelming sympathy for the Vietcong, leading the U.S. to choose escalated violence. One of Kennedy's trusted, dovish advisors described the president in September 1963 as supporting the war, and Chomsky calls the record on this issue consistent. Shortly after the assassination, Kennedy doves supported Johnson's Vietnam policies, but changed their stance--and their historical memory--after the 1968 Tet Offensive. Chomsky suggests that fascination with Camelot, like support for H. Ross Perot, indicates a desire to project heroism in a time of cultural malaise. (July)
From the Publisher

"Chomsky is a global phenomenon . . . he may be the most widely read American voice on foreign policy on the planet."
—The New York Times Book Review

"[Rethinking Camelot provides] strong arguments against Kennedy mythologists."
—Publisher's Weekly

"An interesting work not only for the history it explores, but also as a study of how various individuals and groups write and interpret history."
—Choice

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780896084582
Publisher:
South End Press
Publication date:
07/01/1999
Pages:
172
Product dimensions:
5.30(w) x 8.40(h) x 0.30(d)

Meet the Author


Noam Chomsky is Institute Professor in the Department of Linguistics and Philosophy at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Boston. A member of the American Academy of Science, he has published widely in both linguistics and current affairs. His books include At War with Asia, Towards a New Cold War, Fateful Triangle: The U. S., Israel and the Palestinians, Necessary Illusions, Hegemony or Survival, Deterring Democracy, Failed States: The Abuse of Power and the Assault on Democracy and Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of the Mass Media.

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Rethinking Camelot: JFK, the Vietnam War, and U.S. Political Culture 3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Another brilliant dissection of American foriegn policy by professor Chomsky. I read the book unlike the previous reviewer who 'laughably' referred to Mr. Chomsky as a 'conservative.' Noam Chomsky continues to serve as a lone voice in the wilderness crying out to those who care to think for themselves and challenge established thought.
bmyrab More than 1 year ago
Noam Chomsky is a fraud. A fake lefty. This book is a pack of lies in which he smears President Kennedy as a hawk. Read "JFK and the Unspeakable: Why He Died and Why It Matters" for the facts. Kennedy was, by his own words, "a peace at any price president." With Vietnam, for which he'd just signed NSAM 263 for FULL withdrawal of ALL US personnel by end of 1965. With Russia, with whom he'd signed a nuclear test ban treaty after years of effort. http://www.jfklibrary.org/JFK/JFK-in-History/Nuclear-Test-Ban-Treaty.aspx Over and over he proved it. Listen to his masterpiece speech at American University: http://www.americanrhetoric.com/spee...tyaddress.html Chomsky props up the official lies on President Kennedy, and on his murder by the government in the 1963 presidential coup. He masquerades as a dissident in order to confuse actual dissidents.