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political history

  • World War II Magazine

    WWII Book Review: Endgame, 1945

    Endgame, 1945: The Missing Final Chapter of World War II  By David Stafford. 608 pp. Little, Brown and Co., 2007. $26.99. This book is fine narrative history in the tradition of Cornelius Ryan’s The Longest Day, The Last Battle, and...

  • MHQ Magazine

    Laos: The Road to Vietnam

    In 1959 the United States was drawn inexorably into a local conflict in a tiny Asian kingdom, relying on secret armies, Cold War tactics, and a vast underestimation of the enemy. Sound familiar? Almost 60,000 Americans died in the Vietnam...

  • Vietnam Magazine

    Vietnam Book Review: Why Vietnam Matters

    Why Vietnam Matters, An Eyewitness Account of Lessons Not Learned by Rufus Phillips. Naval Institute Press, 2008, $38.95 Regardless of whatever else history may say about the man, the author of this book, Rufus Phillips, should be recorded...

  • Vietnam Magazine

    Vietnam News- April 2009

    Shineski to VA, Jones to NSA: Obama Taps Vietnam Veterans for Top Posts “I think that General Shinseki is exactly the right person who is going to be able to make sure that we honor our troops when they come home,” President-elect...

  • Vietnam Magazine

    Khe Sanh in the Pantheon

    What a new president’s reflections on an old battle means to one Marine who was there. On the morning of President Barak Obama’s inaguration I was busy at work preparing for a class, when I got an email from a Vietnam veteran friend...

  • Vietnam Magazine

    In the Eye of the Storm: Interview with General Nguyen Khanh

    General Nguyen Khanh sheds light on Saigon’s swirling world of coup and counter coup. “This Khanh is the toughest one they got and ablest one they got,” President Lyndon B. Johnson told a reporter in 1964. LBJ’s Secretary of...

  • Vietnam Magazine

    Vietnam Book Review: Until the Last Man Comes Home

    Until the Last Man Comes Home: POWs, MIAs, and the Politics of Loss at the End of the Vietnam War by Michael J. Allen, University of North Carolina Press, 2009 Michael Allen is a historian at Northwestern University. Until The Last Man...

  • Vietnam Magazine

    McNamara and Me

    My encounter with the master of deceit and deception epitomizes the true legacy of Robert Strange McNamara. Just before 9 on the night of January 6, 2004, I was waiting in the lobby of a Washington, D.C., movie theater for what had been...

  • America's Civil War Magazine

    ACW Book Review: Lincoln’s Darkest Year

    Lincoln’s Darkest Year: The War in 1862 by William Marvel, Houghton Mifflin, 2008, $30 Even the best authors sometimes have trouble getting their heads out of the present and into the past they are writing about. This “presentism”—...

  • America's Civil War Magazine

    The North’s Caustic Cartoonist

    Through his political illustrations, Thomas Nast became a powerful spin doctor who influenced public opinion and made presidents. When Ulysses S. Grant was asked to name the one American civilian who had the most impact on the course of...

  • America's Civil War Magazine

    Snakes in the Grass

    As an embattled Lincoln faced grim re-election prospects, Confederate leaders plotted with Copperhead Democrats in the North to poison the race. In early 1864, as the Civil War dragged into its fourth bloody year, the embattled Confederacy...

  • America's Civil War Magazine

    A bulldog whose bite matched his bark

    Born in the abolitionist hotbed of Massachusetts and raised on the plains of the Midwest, Benjamin Franklin Wade farmed, drove cattle and even labored on the Erie Canal before passing the Ohio bar and jumping head-first into hot-stove...

  • America's Civil War Magazine

    ACW Book Review: Vindicating Lincoln

    Vindicating Lincoln by Thomas L. Krannawitter, Rowman & Littlefield, 2008, $24.95 Although he is universally acknowledged as America’s greatest president—perhaps even its greatest icon— Abraham Lincoln generates just as much...

  • America's Civil War Magazine

    ACW Book Review: Lincoln at Peoria

    Lincoln at Peoria: The Turning Point by Lewis E. Lehrman, Stackpole Books, 2008, $29.95 For five years following his lone term as a U.S. congressman in 1847-49, Abraham Lincoln remained outside the political landscape. But as Lincoln...

  • America's Civil War Magazine

    Bleeding Kansas

    The Kansas-Nebraska Act turned peaceful prairies into battlegrounds. It can be argued that the Civil War actually began in 1854 when blood stained the prairie grass of the Kansas Territory. The American vs. American bloodshed started...

  • America's Civil War Magazine

    The Great Emancipator’s mass execution

    Abraham Lincoln permitted the hanging of dozens of rebellious Sioux. Abraham Lincoln was arguably the most merciful man ever to occupy the White House. In his first year as president, he had already earned a reputation for the liberal use...