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A Bright Shining Lie



A BRIGHT SHINING LIE---sixteen years in the making---is a monumental account of Vietnam by a prizewinning journalist who was there.

A BRIGHT SHINING LIE melds biography and history in a masterly way to tell the story of Lt. Col. John Paul Vann, a soldier cast in the American hero mold, the closest of the Untied States came in Vietnam to a Lawrence of Arabia. And, like Lawrence, he was a complicated man with a dark secret that haunted his career.

Outspoken professionally and fearless, Vann went to Vietnam in 1962, full of confidence in America's might and right to prevail. When he was killed there in 1972, he was mourned at Arlington by renowned figures across the political spectrum, from Daniel Ellsberg To General William Westmoreland.

A BRIGHT SHINING LIE reveals the truth of the war in Vietnam as it unfolded before the eyes of John Paul Vann: the arrogance and professional corruption of the U.S. military system of the 1960s; the incompetence and venality of the South Vietnamese Army; the nightmare of death and destruction that began with the arrival of the American forces.

In the early years, Vann spoke out against the brutality and ineffectiveness of the U.S. strategy. His superiors refused to listen and, frustrated and angry---and dogged by his shameful secret---Vann left the army that he loved. He returned to Vietnam in 1965 as a civilian worker in the pacification program and rose to become the first American civilian to wield a general's command in war.

The war and his obsession with winning also gradually transformed John Vann. The man who began by declaring that one had to rely on a rifle and kill discriminatley in a guerrilla war ended his days calling in the B-52 bombers of the Strategic Air Command.

A BRIGHT SHINING LIE will be a stunning revelation for all who thought they understood the war, certain to provoke debate and controversy. It is a memorable work on the Vietnam tragedy, which destroyed that country and squandered so much of America's young manhood and resources.


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Condition: Used - Good, Dust jacket is very worn on the edges. Inside is very good. Edges are slightly dirty.
ISBN: 9780394484471
Shipping Weight: 1lbs
Published: 1988

This product was added to our catalog on Thursday 27 June, 2013.

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