Chapter

Introduction: To Build a Nation

Thomas L. Ahern

in Vietnam Declassified

Published by University Press of Kentucky

Published in print November 2009 | ISBN: 9780813125619
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780813135342 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5810/kentucky/9780813125619.003.0001
Introduction: To Build a Nation

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The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) began to develop the first of the programs that eventually became the core of the United States-supported pacification campaign in South Vietnam. These initiatives arose almost exclusively in Saigon, where successive chiefs of station and their officers in the field took the lead in articulating responses to communist inroads on the peasantry. This book's account of the CIA pacification programs therefore adopts a field perspective, not only to describe the programs and their effect but also to illuminate agency assumptions about the nature of the insurgency and about the means best suited to counter it. The chronology of CIA involvement comprises six periods, each of which represents a qualitative change in the way in which the agency and the U.S. government approached rural pacification in South Vietnam.

Keywords: CIA; South Vietnam; Saigon; insurgency; United States; rural pacification; peasantry; communists

Chapter.  2037 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Military History

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