Description of JFK and Vietnam, Second Edition for Publisher's Weekly Select, 2017
The publication and suppression of JFK and Vietnam was a watershed event in 20th Century American history. This book exposed, for the first time, 1) how President Kennedy’s opposition to sending U.S. combat forces to Vietnam led those favoring intervention to concoct a false story of battlefield success to prevent a complete withdrawal from Vietnam; 2) the details of the intense struggle that erupted in the administration over the president’s decision to withdraw from Vietnam in the fall of 1963; and 3) how President Johnson’s key changes to a National Security Action Memorandum (NSAM 273) two days after the assassination opened the door to direct American military intervention in Vietnam.
In 1992, JFK and Vietnam received high praise from Publisher's Weekly and Kirkus Reviews. It was favorably reviewed by Arthur Schlesinger, Jr. in the New York Times Book Review. Elsewhere the book caused a media firestorm with proponents of conflicting views making absolute declarations in opposition to Dr. Newman's basic thesis: Kennedy was opposed to U.S. intervention in Vietnam and was withdrawing the U.S. advisors at the time of his assassination in November 1963.
The National Security Agency attempted, unsuccessfully, to block the publication of JFK and Vietnam. Shortly after publication, the publisher, Warner Books, suppressed the book. Six months later, the Galbraith family intervened with Time Warner Inc., and the copyrights were yielded back to the author.
JFK and Vietnam, second edition (2017), represents the continuation of Dr. Newman's research and describes the fascinating sequence of events that unfolded following publication in 1992, including the consequential relationship that was formed between Dr. Newman and former Secretary of Defense Robert S. McNamara following the book's debut. That relationship led McNamara, after 25 years of silence, to publish his memoir on the Vietnam War--In Retrospect. JFK and Vietnam, second edition, expands upon and adds to what so powerfully defined its original impact.
“This commanding essay in critical history is the most authoritative account anywhere of President Kennedy’s Vietnam policy–and it is fascinating reading as well.” — Arthur Schlesinger Jr., Special Assistant to President Kennedy
“A brilliant, meticulously researched and fascinating account of the decision-making which led to America’s long agony in Vietnam. Mr. Newman has added to our history–and hopefully our modesty–as we approach the decisions of the future.” —William E. Colby, former director, Central Intelligence Agency
“This great book brought to light the dark mystery of John F. Kennedy’s decision to withdraw from Vietnam. Celebrated on first publication, JFK and Vietnam has been confirmed by many new sources, witnesses, papers and tapes. This new edition is a triumph of history over evasion.” — James K. Galbraith, The University of Texas at Austin.
“A breakthrough exploration of Kennedy and his generals, it deﬁnes the 1961-1963 period in a light I never understood before, Kennedy as divided, country as deceived-a breathtaking, ground-breaking document of America’s ongoing marriage with Vietnam.” — Oliver Stone, director of JFK
“John Newman is one of this country’s greatest scholars on Cuba, the CIA and the JFK assassination. This book is a ground-breaking investigation of America’s failure in Cuba that uncovers the CIA role is Castro’s rise to power and their ensuing efforts to destroy him. It exposes the genesis of one of America’s darkest deceptions — the myth that Castro was responsible for the assassination of President Kennedy.” — Eric Hamburg, Producer, NIXON film and former aide to Senator John Kerry
“John Newman has done more to advance the work begun by the House Select Committee on Assassinations to explore the CIA’s connections to Oswald than anyone else. Where Angels Tread Lightly is a meticulously researched, in-depth account of U.S. policies and operations during the late 1950’s and early 1960’s that were designed to eliminate a perceived communist threat in Cuba, but instead brought together the forces that eventually led to the assassination of JFK. This extraordinary volume shines new light on the CIA officers and operatives who were involved in those operations.” — Dan Hardway, investigator, House Select Committee on Assassinations
“This is a definitive study of the disastrous hand-off from Eisenhower to Kennedy on Cuba, Laos, and the Congo — by the man superbly qualified to carry it out.” — Peter Dale Scott, author of essential works which include The War Conspiracy, American War Machine, The American Deep State, The Road to 911, Deep Politics and the Death of JFK. His most recent book on American history is Dallas ’63: The First Deep State Revolt Against the White House
“This important new work on the roots of the JFK assassination delves deeply into the deception and intrigue during the buildup to the ill-fated Bay of Pigs invasion. Newman examines the shocking conflict between President Kennedy and the Joint Chiefs of Staff over Laos and Cuba, and offers a dramatic introduction of Lee Harvey Oswald and his probable role as a false defector to the Soviet Union.” — Bill Simpich, author of State Secret: Wiretapping in Mexico City, Double Agents, and the Framing of Lee Oswald
Countdown to Darkness presents the case for Oswald as a witting false defector to the Soviet Union. If proven, this stands history on its head. Professor Newman also presents a detailed account of President Eisenhower’s stunning triple-play directives to eliminate Trujillo, Lumumba, and Castro. It is time we came to grips with this history. — James H. Lesar, president, Assassination Archives and Research Center