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Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Want to Read saving…. Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Other editions. Enlarge cover. Error rating book. Refresh and try again. Open Preview See a Problem? Details if other :. Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page. Dien Bien Phu is the definitive account of the great, climactic battle in French Indochina that led to the American commitment to Vietnam.
Defense analyst Howard R. Simpson was an eyewitness. Get A Copy. Paperback , pages. Published April 1st by Potomac Books first published May More Details Original Title. Other Editions 3. Friend Reviews. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.
To ask other readers questions about Dien Bien Phu , please sign up. See 1 question about Dien Bien Phu…. Lists with This Book. This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Community Reviews. Showing Average rating 4. Rating details. Sort order. An excellent, well written book on a battle that not many people seem to know about. Basically this is a tale of pride French going before a fall - the fall being Dien Bien Phu. The stubborn obstinacy of the French high command who were determined to preserve this jewel in the French empire almost defies belief.
A series of defeats had already showed that fighting in the jungle was not the same as in a European setting. That didn't stop the French from using long convoys and tanks to try to fig An excellent, well written book on a battle that not many people seem to know about. That didn't stop the French from using long convoys and tanks to try to fight a conventional war against Guerilla fighting. The French notion was to build a huge strongpoint out in the jungle north of Hanoi. There, they would draw their Vietminh opponents into a set piece battle of which the French would emerge victorious.
When the Americans pointed out that this 'offensive' tactic was actually defensive and flawed, the French carried on: what did the Americans know of war?
Despite the results in the seond world war, the French High command pushed on, believing that DBP was too strong to be taken by 'native' troops. While the French set up their defences, the VM were on the hills above them, moving artillery into position. The end was a disaster for the French who incurred massive casualties and ended up with drawing from Indochina. History is replete with examples of Military stupidity and sadly this is another one of them.
The book is exceptionally well written including the smell and sounds of this bloody battle in which national pride was put before common sense.
There was even, apparently a move to use tactical nuclear weapons to save the French from being overrun. Luckily for the world, that never happened. View all 6 comments. A very interesting book. Simpson followed the battle from Concept to Surrender as an American Advisor at the time, and lays it all out in charming detail. French and American hubris are chronicled, along with NVA competence.
There are almost enough maps and diagrams, and the tactical detail is fascinating. This will be a good book for any level of reader. Military enthusiasts and modellers will love the book, but the most casual reader will also feel fully informed.
Aug 24, Jeffrey Williams rated it it was amazing Shelves: military-history , history. Howard R. Simpson did an amazing job in putting the reader in the footsteps of those who fought at Dien Pien Phu. He was able to capture the essence of the battle, the fear and hopelessness of the situation in such a brief work. At the same time, he also was able to objectively cover General Giap's viewpoint of the Vietminh, along with the French, British and American political alliances. This was an excellent piece of historical writing and a must read if you want to understand the origins of A Howard R.
This was an excellent piece of historical writing and a must read if you want to understand the origins of American involvement in Vietnam. May 24, BiblioMonk rated it really liked it. Author has narrated first hand experience of battle with rarest of photographs and interviews screaming bullets.
Apr 21, Omnipotent Dystopian Now rated it really liked it Shelves: war-military-history. This is one of the bloodiest, most horrific battles I've read about to date. The French paras demonstrated exemplary camaraderie in the face of death and perceived abandonment, living in the mud and blood of the fallen, enduring the most inconceivable hardships while struggling to defend against the Vietminh.
The battle of Dien Bien Phu is an important chapter in military history that should not be forgotten. Jul 13, Fredrick Danysh rated it really liked it Shelves: vietnam , history. A French paratroop operation was was to take place a valley called Dien Bien Phu. The French forces dropped in the midst of strong Vietnamese forces and a fierce battle ensued. The French defeat led to the eventual entry of American forces replacing the French in Vietnam as the US tried to stabilize the "democratic" government.
View all 3 comments. Sep 06, Steven Raszewski rated it really liked it. Great reading of one of the most important battles in the 20th century and all but forgotten. Was actually playing the war-game Storm Over Dien Bien Phu great game with my son that peaked my interest to go find a book on the subject. And this one was great. Includes interviews with Gen Giap. Apr 28, Scott Holstad rated it it was amazing Shelves: asia , history , favorites , military-and-military-history.
An exhaustive, thorough recounting of France's defeat at the hands of the North Vietnamese back in the s. You feel like you're there. Well written. Feb 26, Nate Hill rated it it was amazing. An incredible read with strategic, operational, and tactical implications woven together expertly by an eye witness. There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Readers also enjoyed. About Howard R. Books by Howard R. Related Articles. There are many ways to take action against racism. Read more No trivia or quizzes yet.
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Dien Bien Phu: The Epic Battle America Forgot
View Larger Image. Ask Seller a Question. Dien Bien Phu is recognized as one of history's great battles. It began in November , when French paratroopers seized a small airstrip in Northwestern Vietnam. It ended in May with tens of thousands of Vietminh troops overrunning the beseiged garrison.
Dien Bien Phu: the Epic Battle America Forgot