Established in 1955 as a private advocacy group, the American Friends of Vietnam worked to influence U.S. attitudes and policies toward Vietnam for nearly two decades. AFV members wrote articles, gave speeches, sponsored aid drives, and forged ties with journalists, academics, and government officials in an effort to generate American assistance for South Vietnam. In The Vietnam Lobby, Joseph Morgan shifts the focus away from the much-examined antiwar demonstrations that took place in America to concentrate instead on the actions of those who endorsed U.S. intervention in Vietnam. Drawing on a wide range of documentary sources, Morgan presents a comprehensive study of the AFV and its activities. He traces the group's establishment and growth, examines its internal organization and politics, and, ultimately, evaluates its effectiveness in guiding government policy and public opinion. Morgan also assesses the charges of antiwar critics who claimed the AFV exerted an excessive, perhaps disastrous, influence in shaping America's Vietnam policy. Finally, he offers insights into the thinking of those who believed that the United States had the unique ability--even the obligation--to help shape Vietnam's future.
Originally published in 1997.
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