By Orrin Schwab
The Vietnam struggle was once in lots of methods outlined by means of a civil-military divide, an underlying conflict among army and civilian management over the conflict's nature, function and effects. This ebook explores the explanations for that clash—and the result of it.The relationships among the U.S. army, its supporters, and its rivals through the Vietnam battle have been either severe and intricate. Schwab indicates how the facility of the army to prosecute the conflict used to be complex through those relationships, and through numerous nonmilitary concerns that grew from them. leader between those used to be the military's dating to a civilian nation that interpreted strategic price, hazards, morality, political expenditures, and army and political effects based on a special calculus. moment was once a media that introduced the war—and these protesting it—into dwelling rooms around the land.As Schwab demonstrates, Vietnam introduced jointly management teams, every one with very diversified operational and strategic views at the Indochina zone. Senior army officials favorite conceptualizing the struggle as a traditional army clash that required traditional skill to victory. Political leaders and critics of the battle understood it as an basically political clash, with linked political hazards and prices. because the struggle advanced, Schwab argues, the divergence in views, ideologies, and political pursuits created a wide, and eventually unbridgeable divide among army and civilian leaders. after all, this conflict of cultures outlined the Vietnam warfare and its legacy for the militia and for American society as an entire.
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Additional resources for A Clash of Cultures: Civil-Military Relations during the Vietnam War (In War and in Peace: U.S. Civil-Military Relations)
In particular, civilian ofﬁcials who were responsible for political affairs, domestic or international, took a dour view of the escalating ground war. qxd 36 7/6/06 11:27 AM Page 36 A CLASH OF CULTURES of the situation in South Vietnam suggested a protracted and very costly conﬂict, the dominant perception of civilian executive branch ofﬁcers, was tepid support for a necessary engagement. Few argued in 1965 that Vietnam and the Indochina region as a whole were not important to the containment system.
Policy documents from the period indicated a consensus view in Washington that the Army of the Republic of Vietnam (ARVN) had to be expanded to over two hundred thousand men. To improve the overall combat capabilities and the size of the ARVN, the advisory effort had to be upgraded with a larger ﬁeld organization commanded by a more senior military ofﬁcer. Paul Harkins, a lieutenant general of the Army, was sent to Vietnam as the ﬁrst MACV commander. Rivalries between the service branches compromised the effectiveness of MACV as a uniﬁed center of command.
The Department of Defense, which had disputed the State Department’s dour view of the Strategic Hamlet program, reported to Johnson in December 1963 that the program was in ruins. Thousands of fortiﬁed hamlets had been destroyed or overrun by the NLF, and little remained of the paciﬁcation efforts in the countryside. Politically, the fall of Diem had replaced a weak but stable authoritarian regime with a very weak and unstable military junta. The South Vietnamese generals had no inherent gifts for domestic politics.
A Clash of Cultures: Civil-Military Relations during the Vietnam War (In War and in Peace: U.S. Civil-Military Relations) by Orrin Schwab