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ChatChat - Claudia Cragg

Feb 20, 2018

The debate over why the Vietnam War went so wrong still rages as we reach its 50th anniversary. But as Max Boot argues in THE ROAD NOT TAKEN, one figure looms especially large as a symbol the war’s many missed opportunities: Edward Lansdale.  

Claudia Cragg (@KGNUClaudia) speaks here for @KGNU with Senior Fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations and renowned military historian,Max Boot (@MaxBootand the author of Savage Wars of Peace and the New York Times bestseller Invisible Armies.

The Road Not Taken: Edward Lansdale and the American Tragedy in Vietnam(WW. Norton; Jan 2018) is a biography of profound historical consequence, rescuing Lansdale from historical disgrace. Perhaps Vietnam could have been different, had we only listened…

In this legendary profile of Edward Lansdale—the man claimed to be the fictional model for Graham Greene’s The Quiet American and a co-conspirator in the Kennedy assassination (Oliver Stone) -  best-selling author Max Boot manifests Lansdale’s “heart and mind” diplomacy in the Philippines and Vietnam.

Never before-seen documents, love letters, and dozens of interviews recast this cautionary American story, tracking the daring rise and utter fall of the roguish “T.E. Lawrence of Asia” from the battle of Dien Bien Phu to the humiliating American evacuation in 1975.