Valley of Death: The Tragedy at Dien Bien Phu That Led America into the Vietnam War

Valley of Death: The Tragedy at Dien Bien Phu That Led America into the Vietnam War

Ted Morgan

Pulitzer Prize–winning writer Ted Morgan has now written a wealthy and definitive account of the fateful conflict that ended French rule in Indochina—and led inexorably to America’s Vietnam conflict. Dien Bien Phu was once a distant valley at the border of Laos alongside an easy rural alternate path. however it could even be the place a very good ecu strength fell to an underestimated rebel military and misplaced keep watch over of an important colony. Valley of Death is the untold tale of the 1954 conflict that, in six weeks, replaced the process history.

A veteran of the French military, Ted Morgan has made use of unique firsthand experiences to create the main entire and dramatic telling of the clash ever written. here's the heritage of the Vietminh liberation movement’s uprising opposed to French profession after global conflict II and its progress as an adversary, finally subsidized by way of Communist China. right here too is the ill-fated French plan to construct a base in Dien Bien Phu and draw the Vietminh right into a debilitating defeat—which as an alternative ended in the Europeans being encircled within the surrounding hills, besieged by way of heavy artillery, overrun, and defeated.

    Making specialist use of lately unearthed or published details, Morgan unearths the internal workings of the yank attempt to help France, with Eisenhower secretly disdainful of the French attempt and prophetically apprehensive that “no army victory used to be attainable in that form of theater.” Morgan paints indelible pictures of all of the significant gamers, from Henri Navarre, head of the French Union forces, a inflexible specialist unprepared for an enemy fortified via rice carried on bicycles, to his commander, normal Christian de Castries, a privileged, miscast cavalry officer, and basic Vo Nguyen Giap, a grasp of guerrilla battle understanding of a one-room hut at the facet of a hill. so much devastatingly, Morgan units the level for the Vietnam quagmire that used to be to come.

    fantastically researched and powerfully written, Valley of Death is the crowning success of an writer whose paintings has constantly been as compulsively readable because it is important.

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