Aurélie Basha i Novosejt

Nov 4, 2019

'I Made Mistakes'

Robert McNamara's Vietnam War Policy, 1960-1968

Cambridge University Press 2018

purchase at bookshop.org Speaking to an advisor in 1966 about America's escalation of forces in Vietnam, American Secretary of Defense Robert S. McNamara confessed: 'We've made mistakes in Vietnam … I've made mistakes. But the mistakes I made are not the ones they say I made'. In her book, 'I Made Mistakes': Robert McNamara's Vietnam War Policy, 1960-1968 (Cambridge University Press, 2018), Dr. Aurélie Basha i Novosejt, Lecturer in American History at the University of Kent, provides a fresh and controversial examination of McNamara's decisions during the Vietnam War. Although McNamara is remembered as the architect of the Vietnam War, Dr. Novosejt draws on new primary sources - including the diaries of his close confidant & advisor John T. McNaughton - to reveal a man who resisted the war more than most. As Secretary of Defense, he did not want the costs of the war associated with a new international commitment in Vietnam, but he sacrificed these misgivings to instead become the public face of the war out of a sense of loyalty to the President Lyndon B. Johnson. Cambridge University Professor Andrew Preston calls Dr. Novosejt’s book: ‘boldly original’, which sheds ‘new light on the subject’. In short Dr. Novosejt's books is a must read for any serious student of the Americanization of the Vietnam War in the 1960's.
Charles Coutinho has a doctorate in history from New York University. Where he studied with Tony Judt, Stewart Stehlin and McGeorge Bundy. His Ph. D. dissertation was on Anglo-American relations in the run-up to the Suez Crisis of 1956. His area of specialization is 19th and 20th-century European, American diplomatic and political history. He has written recently for the Journal of Intelligence History and Chatham House’s International Affairs. It you have a recent title to suggest for a podcast, please send an e-mail to Charlescoutinho@aol.com.

Listen to more episodes on:

Your Host

Charles Coutinho

Charles Coutinho Ph. D. of the Royal Historical Society, received his doctorate from New York University. His area of specialization is 19th and 20th-century European, American diplomatic and political history. He has written for Chatham House’s International Affairs, the Institute of Historical Research's Reviews in History and the University of Rouen's online periodical Cercles.

Learn More

Also Hosted By Charles Coutinho