Having blunted North Korean and Chinese offensives that killed thousands of soldiers and civilians, the United Nations forces, now under command of General Matthew B. Ridgway, dug in as both sides agreed to open negotiations.
96–172. As such they claim, Tet was a major strategic political and psychological triumph for Communist forces in the conflict. For a counterargument on how U.S. Army officers shunned learning and thus lost the war in Vietnam, see John Nagl, Learning to Eat Soup with a Knife: Counterinsurgency Lessons from Malaya and Vietnam (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2002). Nguyen Duy Hinh, Lam Son 719 (Washington, DC: U.S. Army Center of Military History, 1979), 8. See also Dale Andradé, Ashes to Ashes: The Phoenix Program and the Vietnam War (Lexington, MA: Lexington Books, 1990); and Mark Moyar, Phoenix and the Birds of Prey: Counterinsurgency and Counterterrorism in Vietnam (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1997, 2007). Contrary to NLF dogma and expectations, the hoped for uprising of the masses never occurred. If CORDS could be viewed as a microcosm of Westmoreland’s comprehensive strategy, it also underscored the difficulties of implementing so many programs at once. This is not a simple question to answer. , Hanoi also organized the Southern Communist party, the People's Revolutionary Party (PRP) in 1962, to mobilize communist party membership among southerners, and COSVN, Central Office for Southern Vietnam, which controlled a substantial range of military activity. North Vietnamese units still found refuge in sanctuaries along the Cambodian and Laotian borders. 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", Communist forces deployed an extensive and sophisticated intelligence apparatus within South Vietnam, extending from the top echelons of the Southern regime, to village level guerrilla helpers informing on ARVN troop movements. Leaders such as Marine General V. Krulak favored a more restrained pacification-oriented approach, and his "Spreading Inkblot Theory" questioned the heavy 'search and destroy' philosophy of General W. Westmoreland as not only sometimes counter-productive, but neglectful of controlling key population bases, and developing more effective ARVN forces. The typical recruit was a rural youth in his early 20s, with three years of prior compulsory training and indoctrination in various militia and construction units. , There were five geographic/area commands covering South Vietnam in terms of military operations. Previously fragmented approaches to combat operations, pacification and mentoring the South Vietnamese armed forces now became "one war" with the single, clear-cut objective of security for the South Vietnamese villages and hamlets.  Such critics point to the success sometimes achieved by the US Marines in their I Corps zone of operations, and the US Special Forces in organizing large areas of tribal peoples before the 1965 intervention. Operation Rolling Thunder, launched in early March 1965, aimed at eliminating Hanoi’s support of the southern insurgency. , Hit squads and assassinations. 21. . The National Archives in College Park, Maryland, offers a vast amount of resources as well. While dependent on US aid, Diem was not afraid to disagree with or stand up to his American sponsors when he felt their demands were unworkable, incurring the enmity of the new US Ambassador Henry Lodge (1963–64) and certain US media figures that kept up a steady drumbeat of negative press, undermining his efforts. Political indoctrination continued throughout the VC Main Force fighter's training, with nightly "criticism and self-criticism" sessions to eliminate error, and purge incorrect thought. The flexible shifting of tempo and styles however was not without cost. Moyar, Triumph Forsaken, 41-112; Cash, Albright and Sandstrum. For a perspective of Diem somewhat at odds with Miller, and especially Moyar, see Seth Jacobs, Cold War Mandarin: Ngo Dinh Diem and the Origins of America’s War in Vietnam, 1950–1963 (Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2006). The press reacted strongly, referring to the bombing of urban targets in North Vietnam as “war by tantrum” and an act of “senseless terror.”74 But by late 1972, B-52s were the only tools left in Nixon’s arsenal. Did you know… We have over 200 college In 1966, US General Westmoreland forbade the creation of any more ARVN units until the existing ones were brought up to some minimum level of strength. This “better war” thesis found acceptance among many officers in whom a conviction endured that a better application of strategy could have yielded better political results. The final element, Vietnamization, aimed at training and equipping South Vietnam’s armed forces so they could defend the country on their own. James E. Westheider, The African American Experience in Vietnam: Brothers in Arms (Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2008). McNamara quoted in Gerard J. DeGroot, A Noble Cause?  Guerrilla warfare for example co-existed alongside conventional operations, and propaganda and terrorism would always be deployed throughout the conflict. Ronald B. Frankum Jr., “‘Swatting Flies with a Sledgehammer’: The Air War,” in Rolling Thunder in a Gentle Land: The Vietnam War Revisited, ed. 37.
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