As an active-duty soldier, McMaster probably felt compelled to accept the job out of deference to the commander-in-chief—whoever he or she. The book was Dereliction of Duty, a published version of a recent McMaster’s subtitle was “Lyndon Johnson, the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the. A Review Essay of H. R. McMaster’s. Dereliction of Duty. JAMES J. WIRTZ. Few events in recent memory have received as much scholarly and popular attention .

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It’s not until the book’s epilogue does he place some blame on the JCS, writing “the ‘five silent men’ on the Joint Chiefs made possible the way the Derelictoon States went to war in Vietnam.

Apr 30, Joe Clark rated it liked it Shelves: McMaster’s new “Dereliction of Duty stands out as a particularly well-documented, searing indictment of the civilian and military leadership. One of the democratic leader’s, and his minions’, few options therefore is to lie.

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More important, Canadians have been serving in the U. This book gives me a new perspective on Johnson and Westmoreland but it doesn’t explain one fact that has rankled me for over 50 years.

Dissenting viewpoints were screened out, usually before they got to the president; Secretary of Defense Vereliction McNamara was the primary gatekeeper. I believe that this book is required reading for anyone to try to better grasp the troubling aspect of getting into wars View all 24 comments.

McMaster re-fought the bureaucratic wars of and memo by memo–his main villain was Robert McNamara but he found plenty of blame to lay at the feet of the Joint Chiefs of Staff who as I recall McMaster accused of shirking their constitutional duty to advise the President and to to so truthfully.


McMaster is a serving career Army officer with a PhD. Though he had spent a good deal of time as a reporter in Vietnam during the early s, Halberstam took the same American-centered, Washington-centered, mcmastre top approach as McMaster and dozens of other writers.

Dereliction of Duty (book) – Wikipedia

I found the xuty to be an enthralling introduction to both subjects although certainly not the lightest read of my summer. Persistence suggests something systematic, a dugy but self-inflicted group-inability to perceive or act on reality. The only point I am stressing here is that where draft dodgers continuously received the attention of the time to the American Press — Canadians serving in the American Armed Forces were rarely if ever written about. The book received rave reviews.

What McMaster Gets Wrong About Vietnam – POLITICO Magazine

Forty Maxims on War, Peace, and Strategy. Harold Johnson’s inaction haunted him for the rest of his life. View all 9 comments.

The wars in Vietnam, she observed, long thought about in terms of black and white—colonialists vs. Those charged with planning the war believed that it would be possible to preserve American credibility even if the United States armed forces withdrew from the South, after a show of force against the North and in the South in which American forces were ‘bloodied.

Pages with mdmaster required references or sources Pages to import images to Wikidata. I thought that to better prepare myself to lead soldiers in combat [as he subsequently did as the commander of Eagle Troop, 2nd Armored Cavalry Regiment, in the Gulf] it was important to learn from the experiences of others, and the most recent U. He may be right. Given the abrupt and ignominious departure of his predecessor he derelictiom has a bit more room to disagree with the currency president than other appointees have.

There are no discussion topics on this book yet. McMaster argues that LBJ was powerfully, primarily concerned with In spite of its expansive sounding title, this book has a fairly narrow focus. What metrics and statistics can we choose to show mxmaster are winning? George Pickett, who commanded the ill-fated charge at the Battle derelictio Gettysburg. LBJ lied in his public pronouncements about what was happening in Vietnam, and McNamara and others lied when they went before Congress to testify.

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Every decision he made about Vietnam in these years was related either to getting elected inor keeping on the good side of everyone he needed in order to get his Great Society derekiction. And by drifting in, instead of marching in with well defined goals and firm purpose, he created a monstrosity that nearly destroyed this country.

This book is a microscopic view of these failures, and the biggest lesson to take away from the study of this book is an appreciation of just how removed from reality a government bureaucracy can be, and how uncritical adulation for a president or an idea can result in horrible destruction and heartache.

This didn’t work out well as LBJ and his subordinates had no trouble working around the chiefs. No one is going to appoint someone who is not trusted enough to implement a policy once the decision has been made. She perceived a straight line stretching from the long history of Vietnamese resistance to Chinese domination in the first millennium to the rise of Vietnamese anti-colonialism in the 19th and 20th century to Ho Chi Minh and the pro-independence coalition he led, the Viet Minh.