A review of in retrospect by robert mcnamara

On the day before the Pleiku attack, he had prepared a draft memorandum for President Johnson recommending a forceful policy of "sustained reprisal. Today, it is clear to me that my memorandum pointed directly to the conclusion that, through either negotiation or direct action, we should have begun our withdrawal from South Vietnam.

McNamara does not mention an extraordinary caution Gen.

Ford From the point of view of the United States, with reference to the Far East as a whole, Indochina is devoid of decisive military objectives, and the allocation of more than token U. Kennedy then sent Sargent Shriver to approach him regarding either the Treasury or the Defense cabinet post less than five weeks after McNamara had become president at Ford.

McNamara owes us another "We were wrong, terribly wrong" for buttressing his then-believed domino thesis at the expense of CIA and historical accuracy. I am not making this up. Well, you stupid, brainless idiots, the reason for that wild dream can not be a reality because even if you and your buddies somehowby some miracle, found themselves inside the US border, all of you will be ELIMINATED by the local peopleeven if they are armed only with sticks and stones, even if they have to fight to the last person.

Bob [McNamara] and I tend to favor the first course, but we believe that both should be carefully studied and that alternative programs should be argued out before you. You have to make a judgment on how much is enough.

McNamara stresses many facets of policymaking: We were profoundly ignorant of the history, culture, and politics of the people in the area.

On the same day President Johnson received his "explosive" memorandum from McNamara and McGeorge Bundy, he sent the latter to Vietnam to appraise the prospects for stable government in Saigon and to advise whether to initiate US military action against North Vietnam.

It appears that [the enemy] can more than replace his losses by infiltration from North Vietnam and recruitment in South Vietnam. We have known this from the beginning. Thereafter, it would be difficult, if not impossible, for Indonesia, India, and the others to remain outside the Soviet-dominated Asian Bloc.

As McNamara said in his annual report, "The military tactics are those of the sniper, the ambush, and the raid. Other steps[ edit ] McNamara took other steps to increase U.

Enemy morale has not broken. With this facts in mind, one will but laugh at all of McNamara lengthy discourse, white washing ,self -serving statements. As characterized by Gen. We have seen that, by the spring ofMcNamara had clearly and candidly declared his heresy to the President and had commissioned the gathering of policymaking documents that ultimately became The Pentagon Papers.

Throughout this memoir, one can see this facts,openly admitted by the author. Kennedy instructed ExComm to immediately come up with a response to the Soviet threat unanimously without him present.

We failed to recognize that neither our people nor our leaders are omniscient. His book of confessions pointedly describes how that course brought him personal abuse from the two sides: These personal tales are often trite in the morals they draw, frequently self-serving when laboring for generosity, and occasionally just mawkish.

I did not then and do not now believe that [they] consciously misled me. We thus failed to analyze and debate our actions in Southeast Asia Most of all he resists pursuing the hints sprinkled here and there that his behavior was the result of powerful interpersonal forces operating among the small circle of top advisers.

McNamara is a Errol Morris documentary consisting mostly of interviews with Robert McNamara and archival footage. It could not be done, and it was not done. It deals narrowly with the hypothetical question which the author put to himself, i.

In Retrospect: The Tragedy and Lessons of Vietnam

McNamaraas a slave for his masters in the White house and Pentagon, had a duty to carry out their order: Maxwell Taylor, then Ambassador in Saigon, sent the President a personal cable in which he held that "I do not recall in history a successful antiguerrilla campaign with less than a 10 to 1 numerical superiority over the guerrillas and without the elimination of assistance from outside the country.

By this time the plot had thickened in many respects. I doubt that US forces could do much better. I fear that, in such circumstances, governments -- and, indeed, most people -- tend to stick their heads in the sand.

If so, what kind of action should we take? Any one of the issues facing Washington during the s justified the full attention of the president and his associates. He negotiated, with the conflicting countries represented on the Board, a growth in funds to channel credits for development, in the form of health, food, and education projects.A Review of Robert S.

McNamara’s In Retrospect: The Tragedy and Lessons of Vietnam By Oleg Nekrassovski The present paper is a review of McNamara’s memoir, In. Thoughts Engendered by Robert McNamara's In Retrospect In his In Retrospect, McNamara misrepresents the fact that this NSC-commissioned panel of CIA, State, and Pentagon intelligence officers took a skeptical view of going North.

McNamara makes no mention of such an interagency panel or of its lack of enthusiasm. reflects one of the. Robert S.

McNamara, In Retrospect: The Tragedy and Lessons of Vietnam. New York.

Robert McNamara

Random House, pages. Donald L.

Commentary Magazine

Hafner Professor Political Science Department Boston College [I wrote the following review back inin an effort to clarify my own thinking about McNamara's account of a war I had been studying for. Apr 16,  · IN RETROSPECT The Tragedy and Lessons of Vietnam. By Robert S.

McNamara with Brian VanDeMark. Illustrated. pp. New York: Times Books/Random House. $ IN his 79th year, Robert S. McNamara. A Re ie of Ro ert S. M Namara’s In Retrospect: The Tragedy and Lessons of Vietnam By Oleg Nekrassovski The p ese t pape is a e ie of M Na a a s e oi, In Retrospect.

It will first take a ief look at this ook s pu pose, ai ideas a d ai s, togethe ith so e ele a t a kg ou d and evaluation.

This will. “In Retrospect: The Tragedy and Lessons of Vietnam” by Robert S. McNamara was a very good read. If you look at the reviews, some readers loved the book and some hated it and often it was because some loved the man and some hated him/5.

A review of in retrospect by robert mcnamara
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