Public Affairs: The Military and the Media, 1962-1968 (Paperback)

Public Affairs: The Military and the Media, 1962-1968 (Paperback)
Public Affairs: The Military and the Media, 1962-1968 (Paperback)
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United States Army in Vietnam. CMH Pub. 91-13-1. Draws upon previously unavailable Army and Defense Department records to interpret the part the press played during the Vietnam War. Discusses the roles of the following in the creation of information policy: Military Assistance Command's Office of Information in Saigon; White House; State Department; Defense Department; and the United States Embassy in Saigon. L.C. card 88-931. Item 345.

As the war in South Vietnam developed, a belief grew in official circles that the attitude of the American public would play a major part in determining whether the United States would achieve its goals in that conflict. Reasoning that the news media had a profound influence on public opinion, civilian officials assumed a larger role than ever before in the formulation of military policies to manage the press at the scene of the fighting. In the process they affected not only the handling of the news media in Vietnam but in some measure also the conduct of the war.

This study examines the evolution of the U.S. government's public affairs policies in Vietnam between 1962 and 1968. Adopting a broad viewpoint in order to depict the many influences-civilian and military, political and diplomatic that bore upon the conduct of public affairs, the work describes the tensions that developed between the institutions of the press and the military as the war grew and as each served its separate ends. It observes events from the perspective of the Military Assistance Command's Office of Information in Saigon, which carried much of the burden of press relations, but necessarily considers as well the role of the White House, the State and Defense Departments, and the U.S. embassy in Saigon in the creation of information policy. By drawing together many disparate strands, the book seeks to delineate some of the issues and problems that can confront an open society whenever it wages war. 

Table of Contents

Table of Contents (Summary):


Taking Sides

The Buddhist Crisis, 1963

Maximum Candor

More Than Goodwill

Keeping the Options Open

Censorship Considered

Counterinsurgency Combat Operations

The Ground War

Problems With the Press

gearing for a Larger War

First Gusts of the Whirlwind: The Buddhist Crisis of 1966

Political Attrition

The Benefit of a Doubt

Claims of Progress--and Counterclaims

A Hard Blow

A Change of Direction


Bibliographical Note





Historians, history students and professors studying media and/or the Vietnam War, governmental policymakers, members of the military (especially Vietnam Veterans), and members of the general public interested in the role of media during wartime and conflicts would find this a useful reference.

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Defense Dept., Army, Center of Military History
  • Hammond, William M.
DSL 89-0092-P 02/10/89. BIP. NB1210 GB1106 GB1107 GB1108 GB1109 GB1110 GB1111
Key Phrases:
  • United States Army in Vietnam
  • Center of Military History Publication 91 13 1
  • Vietnamese Conflict
  • Military History
  • Government Information
  • Government Publicity
  • Government and the Press
SuDocs Class:
D 114.7/3:P 96/paper
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