The Village War is the story of how dedicated insurgents, beginning from a zero power base in rural villages, built a revolutionary movement that ultimately defeated the South Vietnamese government and its ally, the United States.
The insurgents themselves--the Viet Cong--tell their story. They tell it through their numerous internal documents, interrogation reports of prisoners, interviews of defectors. Villagers contribute to the saga of this power struggle with their eye-witness accounts.
Robert Andrews, the sole American with a team of six South Vietnamese, traveled on foot through the villages of the Upper Mekong Delta from 1964-1965. For weeks at a time, he and his team lived in villages, interviewing cross sections of village society.
From his experiences, Andrews came to believe that the Viet Cong insurgents were successful, not because of force or terror, but because they understood better than the South Vietnamese or Americans the complex webs of cultural, social, and economic dynamics in the rural villages.
Robert Andrews was an Army Special Forces officer and counterinsurgency specialist during the Vietnam War. Later, he served in various positions at the Central Intelligence Agency. In 1980, he became Senator John Glenn's national security adviser. Following almost 20 years in the defense industries, he accepted a political appointment as Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Special Operations. He was in the Pentagon on 9/11, and advised the Secretary of Defense on the subsequent deployment of special operations forces to Afghanistan. He remains a consultant to the US Special Operations Command.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
The author obviously speaks from experience, is knowledgable and easily understood. This book should be required reading by our military leaders today, both officers and enlisted, to learn from the past rather than learn from experience. It's ironic that lessons from Vietnam are still valuable - but have our current military leaders studied or ignored them? Bob Andrews has the ability to write in a language understood by those in a combat unit who need to learn the lessons of the past and how it is relevant in todays warfare.
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