back arrowSafe for Democracy

Vietnam III: The World at War

Episode description

Well, we’re making time now, and I hope that keeps up. I’ve got some interesting stuff to show you today. First is the cover image for the show. That’s Ho Chi Minh on the left and Vo Nguyen Giap on the right along with their American OSS Deer Team advisors, who we’ll hear a fair bit about this show.

Here’s another one of Giap and ‘OSS Agent 19’ along with their American advisors.

The OSS teams supplied and trained Giap’s burgeoning Viet Minh guerrilla forces and served as political liaisons between Ho and the US regional military headquarters in Kunming in China. They followed the Vietnamese freedom fighters all the way into Hanoi after the Japanese ousted the French and then surrendered in 1945.

Here we’ve got the OSS walking as part of the procession towards Ba Dinh Square on September 2, 1945, shortly before Ho declared Vietnamese independence.

This below is a closer shot of Ho making that announcement, or it purports to be. Either the framing makes it look like Ho is in a studio, versus on a stage in Ba Dinh, or Ho’s actually in a studio and this photo has nothing to do with the announcement in Hanoi that day. Either way, the old revolutionary’s announcing something.

Then we’ve got Giap and his fighters participating in a reception at the American villa in Hanoi after the independence day celebrations:

I cannot imagine what guys like Westmoreland must have thought when the Pentagon Papers came out, along with photos like this, of American officers and Vietnamese guerrillas saluting the US flag and singing “The Star Spangled Banner” together.

Speaking of the Pentagon Papers, another topic we’ll touch on this show is Ho’s numerous attempts to reach out officially to the highest levels of US government. The OSS officers in touch with him, I think, had an impression that he was trying to negotiate primarily through them, but Ho had a much savvier view of who really held the American cards. Here’s a page from the now declassified Pentagon study:

Another page I found pretty interesting (and while I wish I could, there is no way I can make any kind of thorough reading of the Papers. The volume that covers just the period of this show is 245 pages, and the total study has nearly fifty volumes. They’re all available through the National Archives’ site, and they are interesting on every single page.

McNamara had them prepared as an internal Pentagon investigation into how the war had gotten started and how it was going. He was well into his guilty phase by that point, when he’d personally figured out that it was a horrorshow from the beginning, and the study that became the Pentagon Papers was a kind of first step towards atonement, although he wanted them to come out after thirty years or so, not when Dan Ellsberg chose to leak them.

The first page of the first volume, which concerns the period we’re looking at in this show struck me particularly, because the guys writing it were using some of the very same sources that I am.

The thing I don’t like here is that, well, they dump all over Fall, but the argument that they eventually make is the same one that Fall makes both in Last Reflections and, in part, in The Two Viet Nams. Either way,  in my mind, pretty cool.

And last but never, ever least:

Bayart, Jean-Francois. “Africa in the World: A History of Extraversion.” African Affairs, 2000, 217-267.

Ellsberg, Daniel. Secrets: A Memoir of Vietnam and the Pentagon Papers. New York; Viking Press, 2002.

Fall, Bernard. Hell in a Very Small Place. Philadelphia: Lippincott, 1966.

Fall, Bernard. Last Reflections on a War. New York: Schocken Books, 1972.

Fall, Bernard. Street without Joy: Indochina at War, 1946-54. Harrisburg, PA: Stackpole, 1961.

Fall, Bernard. The Two Viet Nams: A Political and Military Analysis. New York: Frederick A. Praeger, 1963.

Fehrenbach, T. R. This Kind of War: A Study in Unpreparedness. New York: Macmillan, 1963.

Fitzgerald, Frances. Fire in the Lake: The Vietnamese and the Americans in Vietnam. New York: Little, Brown and Company, 1972.

Gaddis, John Lewis. Strategies of Containment: A Critical Appraisal of Postwar American National Security Policy. New York: Oxford University Press, 2005.

Halberstam, David. The Best and the Brightest. New York: Random House, 1972.

Halberstam, David. The Coldest Winter: America and the Korean War. New York: Hyperion, 2007.

Herr, Michael. Dispatches. New York: Knopf, 1977.

Hickey, Gerald Cannon. A Village in Vietnam. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1964.

Huntington, Samuel. “The Bases of Accommodation.” Foreign Affairs, 1968.

Karnow, Stanley. Vietnam: A History. New York: Penguin Books, 1997.

Lacouture, Jean. Ho Chi Minh: A Political Biography. New York: Random House, 1968.

Lacouture, Jean. Vietnam: Between Two Truces. New York: Random House, 1966.

Logevall, Frederick. Embers of WarThe Fall of an Empire and the Making of America’s Vietnam. New York: Random House, 2012.

Maclear, Michael. The Ten Thousand Day War: Vietnam, 1945-1975. New York: Avon Books, 1982.

Mus, Paul and McAlister, John T. The Vietnamese and Their Revolution. New York: Harper and Row, 1970.

Moore, Harold G., and Galloway, Joseph L. We Were Soldiers Once…and Young. New York: Random House, 1992.

Niehbuhr, Rienhold. The Irony of American History. Chicago: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1952.

Sheehan, Neil. A Bright Shining Lie: John Paul Vann and America in Vietnam. New York: Vintage, 1988.

Audio Credits:

America Prepares for World War 2 | America’s Call to Arms | WW2 Newsreel | 1941. The Best Film Archives. YouTube.

D-Day Normandy Invasion: “Gateway to Victory” 1944 United News Newsreel. Jeff Quitney. YouTube.

Flying Tiger Newsreels. Bomberguy. YouTube.

France Surrenders / Terms of Surrender (World War II).  FasttrackHistory. YouTube.

Frances Wall Of Steel Aka France’s Wall Of Steel – Maginot Line (1938).  British Pathé. YouTube.

German Propaganda Films (1941). British Pathé. YouTube.

JAPANESE ATROCITIES / WAR CRIMES vs. CHINA / NANKING MASSACRE WAR BOND 77854. PeriscopeFilm. YouTube.

Original Pearl Harbor News Footage. The Atlantic. YouTube.

PEARL HARBOR NEWSREEL DECEMBER 7TH 1941 JAPS BOMB USA. PeriscopeFilm. YouTube.

Radio reports on the death of President Franklin D. Roosevelt (April 12, 1945). TheDaveMaybe. YouTube.

Review Of The Year (1938). British Pathé. YouTube.

US Celebrates Japanese Surrender (1945). British Pathé. YouTube.

World Faces Crisis As Japan And China Clash In Far East (1930-1939). British Pathé. YouTube.

World News In Review (1945). British Pathé. YouTube.

episodes iconMore Episodes

Vietnam VIII: End of Indo-China

August 1st, 2018

3:51:42

Here it is, the end of the last real battle of the French war: Dien Bien Phu. After this it’s just Geneva and the transition from French ignobility to American monstrosity.

That all comes next time though. For now, …

Vietnam VII: Dien Bien Phu

July 18th, 2018

2:32:04

Finally we’re here, at the end of the French War, at the Battle of Dien Bien Phu.

Some cool show news: we’re registered for the People’s Choice …

Vietnam VI: Learning Curve

June 25th, 2018

2:38:49

And here we are, finally, finally making it to the end of the French War.

We still have Dien Bien Phu and the denouement to wrap up, which we’ll do in the next episode, maybe in the fastest-ever-produced next episodes, …

Vietnam V: Giap and de Lattre

June 19th, 2018

2:16:08

I’m trying something a little different with these show notes, especially since, with that interim show about Kennan already done, I don’t have any other story I want to be telling apart from the cast. So I’ve got a …

Kennan and Cold War Policy

May 22nd, 2018

1:10:38

Like I said at the end of last episode, there were some broader Cold War issues that I wanted to talk about and some history that I wanted to churn …

Vietnam IV: The First Indochina War

May 14th, 2018

3:07:17

We’re getting into the French War proper now, and we’ll make it almost all the way to the outbreak of the war in Korea by the end of this one.

I’ve …

SFD Short—Refugees

May 1st, 2018

38:09

Hey folks,

I thought I’d try something new with the show notes this time around and just give you the script. The only time I give this a real …

SFD Talk—Vietnam in the US Imagination

April 17th, 2018

1:55:50

Hey folks, in lieu of notes this time, I’m going to give you the full outline that Rob and I were ostensibly working off in the show. Which should …

Announcement—Vietnam Talk

April 9th, 2018

1:40

Like it says in title, there’s no show this Monday, but there is going to be a show this week.

Rob Morris, Ernie Piper, and I are going to be broadcasting another live show this Thursday from 11am to 2pm EST and this …

Vietnam II: Ho Chi Minh

April 4th, 2018

1:25:30

It’s a day late but nowhere near a dollar short (except, I guess, in terms of what I’m paid for these shows; in that case it’s several thousand …

SFD Talk — Unending Oil

March 27th, 2018

1:40:28

I’m back from down south in Oaxaca, and I’ve got the cut-down of the show that Rob Morris and I did, along with my buddy Ernie Piper, about a month …

Peace Corps Chats

March 12th, 2018

1:31:08

SFD Short—Political Cynicism

March 6th, 2018

43:53

Hey Folks,

We’re back to a mix of history and short shows, which means we’re back to quick intros on the smaller episodes. It looks like I’m finally …

Vietnam I: Ancient History

February 26th, 2018

56:04

Well, here we are folks. The beginning of the Vietnam series and very probably the end of SFD. We’re starting, literally, with the dawn of human …

Vietnam: A Plan

February 19th, 2018

13:36

Writing on the first script starts in earnest this week, and I thought everybody deserved to know more or less where we’re headed. This episode gets …

SFD Short—Monopolies

February 13th, 2018

34:02

It’s the last of all news shows, folks, and it’s barely newsy at all. We’re talking about monopolies in the American economy, which was, …

Diminished US Power—A Conversation with Rob Morris

February 8th, 2018

1:56:09

I’m getting back on track after my internet outage, and as promised, here’s a make-up of a sort for those last couple of weeks. This is the show that Rob and I recorded back in December, and which went up earlier this …

SFD Short—The Point

February 5th, 2018

33:56

Hey folks,

Boy do we have some housekeeping. You probably noticed there hasn’t been a show the last two Mondays. That’s because fourteen full days …

Liberal Arts, Again

January 15th, 2018

33:10

I’ve been saying, for longer than it was exactly true, that everything’s bad and it’s only getting worse. The world’s come around to my point of view though, and at least in the US, almost a year out now from the …

SFD Short—Maintenance

January 9th, 2018

27:19

Announcement 1.8.18

January 8th, 2018

1:06

I’m sick, basically, and my voice is gross. Show’ll be out as soon as I can speak again.

SFD Short—Land and Food and Capitalism

January 2nd, 2018

39:16

We’re talking about capitalism, and specifically the ways in which unrestrained, industrialized, late-stage capitalism like ours works to destroy, reconstitute and commodify widely-available goods, usually in such a …

SFD Short—Trickledown

December 28th, 2017

27:01

I have a whole new show all written up but between family stuff and, well, more family stuff, I haven’t been able to find a time to actually record …

SFD Short—Corruption

December 18th, 2017

32:11

It’s pretty straightforward on this one; October’s news show on Corruption just in time for December. Enjoy folks. Patreon people, appreciate the …

NAFTA

December 4th, 2017

26:34

Hey Everybody—

The folks on Patreon have voted the news shows into wider circulation, so they’ll be coming out either regularly or when we have a …

Saving the State Department—A Conversation with Rob Morris

November 30th, 2017

1:26:52

Hey folks,

This show’s coming to you on a Tuesday just because of that new job I mentioned and because Thanksgiving happened on a Sunday this year …

Iran IX: The End

November 21st, 2017

2:21:14

We’re covering a pretty long period in this one, from half or most of the way through the war with Iraq all the way up to the present, although it’s a pretty quick hustle from Khomeini’s death in 1989 to today.

The two …

Iran VIII Part One: The War

November 13th, 2017

1:43:06

Hey folks—

It’s explained in the show, but the tortured titling here comes from that I promised the last Iran show this week, and in what’s to me

Announcement—6.11.2017

November 6th, 2017

2:23

SFD Short—Ends and Means, Again

October 30th, 2017

21:49

Hey Everybody—

Today we’re releasing the seventeenth SFD Short, but by far what’s more important is that today is Muellermas, when a fabled, …

Iran VII: The Revolution in Power

October 23rd, 2017

1:18:02

Hey Folks,

This one’s number twelve, and while we’re not done with Iran yet, number thirteen, Iran VIII and the very last Iran show, come hell or …

Lying in Politics

October 16th, 2017

24:06

Not a whole lot of news this time out. The title of the post is obviously drawn from the essay in Hannah Arendt’s Crises of the Republic.

Which we …

Iran VI: Revolution

October 9th, 2017

1:26:16

Alright, here we are, finally. The Iranian Revolution of 1979. There’s still some groundwork to be laid, but we’re getting there this episode, full …

The Plan for Mexico

October 2nd, 2017

17:35

Hey Everybody,

This Monday’s show is short and to the point. Next Monday, we’re back to Iran. You might be able to hear in this one that I’m a little sick. The unfortunate side-effect of having a weekly show where I …

SFD Short—State

September 22nd, 2017

28:58

Hey Folks—

I’m back on track here in Mexico, finally in the same place long enough to get working on the regular. To that point, if anybody hasn’t …

The End of the World—A Conversation with Rob Morris

September 20th, 2017

1:12:00

SFD Short—Collapse

September 12th, 2017

24:33

Hey Everybody—

I was on the road a little longer than I thought I’d be and I missed last week’s show and for that I’m sorry. But I’ve got one this week, and I’ll be away from rural Tennessee and back in Mexico by next …

SFD Short—Bad Patriotism

August 28th, 2017

34:15

SFD Short—Abolish the Army

August 20th, 2017

35:14

Politico Is Full of It—A Conversation with Rob Morris

August 14th, 2017

1:06:23

SFD Short—Ends and Means

August 7th, 2017

32:06

Well, this is the tenth short, which means we’re putting out a helluva lot more content this year than last, and I hope that’s to the good.

Our very first Patreon-exclusive news analysis show is going up this week, so …

SFD Short—American Legions

July 31st, 2017

34:41

SFD Short—Grand Theories

July 24th, 2017

24:02

Well, like I can’t remember if but might have said last week, we’re back from hiatus and onto regular production again, which means a show for you …

Iran V: The White Revolution

July 18th, 2017

1:36:58

Here we are, the absolute last episode (I promise) before we get to the Iranian Revolution and, I think, the Iran-Iraq War.

In this episode, we’re …

SFD Short—Storming and Norming

June 28th, 2017

24:23

Hey folks,

I know I’m running a little late on the next Iran show, but with some law school stuff, a family reunion, and a neat little piece I’m …

Conversation with Rob Morris—Iran v Saudi Arabia: Backing the Wrong Horse

June 18th, 2017

1:33:59

SFD Short—Death of the Republic

June 5th, 2017

20:21

Hey everybody, so two things I’ve mentioned coming to fruition this week. First, I’m gonna be having another conversation with Rob Morris of the More Freedom Foundation like the one we did a few weeks ago. That is, if …

SFD Short—Alternate Realities

May 29th, 2017

22:25
“Well, now that we have seen each other,” said the Unicorn, “if you’ll believe in me, I’ll believe in you.”

Lewis Carroll, Through the Looking-Glass

Iran IV: America’s Dictator

May 22nd, 2017

1:25:54

Hey folks. We’re getting on with it, but research and length got away from me again, and it’ll be another episode before we’re edging up towards …

Conversation with Robert Morris of the More Freedom Foundation

May 18th, 2017

1:52:24

SFD Short—Liberal Arts

May 16th, 2017

20:34

SFD Short—Forgetfulness

May 8th, 2017

25:11

This is the third short and the first entirely new one, although I’ll get it typed up and post it like any other blog and then link it here sometime this week.

The big news this time though is that sometime next week …

SFD Short—Looking at History from the Outside

May 2nd, 2017

17:28

SFD Short—Historical Optimism

April 11th, 2017

12:06

Hey folks, does what it says on the box.

It looks like I might end up in law school this fall, so there’s a fair chance the show is winding down. …

Iran III: Guns of August

April 3rd, 2017

1:20:00

Well, we finally made it. I thought I’d blow from the ancient Persian Empire straight through to the plot of Persepolis in one episode, but just …

Iran II: Nationalization

March 9th, 2017

1:07:02

 

Here we are at Episode 7. Like I say in the cast, I thought we’d get farther down the road with this one, but podcasts are long and history’s longer, and we’ll have to wait until Episode 8 to get all the way to the …

Iran I: Take Up the Burden

February 12th, 2017

1:14:14

Hey everybody, we’re back from hiatus.

I spent the fall studying for the LSAT and applying to law schools and scrounging enough cash to stay alive, …

Aftermath Part IV

October 14th, 2016

2:09:19

Hey guys.

Welcome to the fifth episode of Safe for Democracy, the podcast about the foreign policy disasters of the United States in the 20th …

Aftermath Part III

September 16th, 2016

1:07:45

Hey everybody, and welcome to the fourth episode of Safe for Democracy, the podcast about the foreign policy disasters of the United States in the …

Aftermath Part II

August 27th, 2016

1:02:33

Hi, and welcome to the third episode of Safe for Democracy.

Which is the second part of the Aftermath, which, in four shows, is the second part of our overarching series on Guatemala.

Simple.

 

Last time we worked our …

Aftermath Part I

August 5th, 2016

1:00:39

Hey everybody, welcome to Safe for Democracy and our second episode.

If you’ve listened to the first podcast, you know that we’d originally planned to do a quick one-two, one episode for the coup in 1954 and one to …

The Coup

June 20th, 2016

1:44:04

 

Hey, welcome to the first full episode of Safe for Democracy.  We’re going to be looking at Guatemala from 1930 or so until 1954, in the lead-up …

Intro Episode

June 13th, 2016

6:38

Welcome everybody to the introductory episode of Safe for Democracy. This is just a primer for anybody who’s interested in the shape of this project, the arc of its future, and who I am. For everybody else, there’s …

Loading ...

Download the RadioPublic app for
 FREE and never miss an episode.

Get it on Google PlayDownload on the App Store