Joseph Hansen

The Case Against “Pacification”

(Fall 1966)

Source: International Socialist Review, Vol.27 No.4, Fall 1966, pp.131-136.
Transcription/Editing/HTML Markup: 2006 by Einde O’Callaghan.
Public Domain: Joseph Hansen Internet Archive 2006; This work is completely free. In any reproduction, we ask that you cite this Internet address and the publishing information above.

President Johnson’s “pacification program” in Vietnam, which received big publicity at the time of his famous February conference with General Ky in Honolulu and Vice-president Humphrey’s subsequent barn-storming tour of Saigon, is pictured as the “positive” side of American intervention in the Vietnamese civil war.

Television films provide documentary evidence of food handouts and rehabilitation projects that are presumably winning the hearts and minds of peasants dislocated by the war. We are shown engaging scenes of the busy market places, the attractive dwellings and even chapels constructed by American troops, who, as everyone knows, are really only adult Boy Scouts, enormously enthusiastic about traveling 10,000 miles to do good for their colored Asian brothers.

Publicity experts, trained in the wholesome arts of Manhattan’s advertising agencies, emphasize the need to enlarge the picture of this side of the American intervention in Vietnam to offset the unfortunate negative image emerging from the napalm burnings, roped prisoners, torture at knife point and other atrocities. The pacification program, we are told, indicates the real purpose of the American intervention which is allegedly to finally bring peace to a country that has been fighting imperialist invaders for a quarter of a century.

The pressing need to ensure the success of the pacification program in order to “win the people” and offset the political lure of “Communism” is one of the arguments advanced for continued escalation of the war. To give the effects of the pacification program a chance to sink in – and who can be against anything as laudable as that! – more troops are needed, more planes, more bombs, more billions of dollars and freedom to engage in “hot pursuit” of the enemy no matter where and no matter what this may lead to.

Exactly what is this “pacification program”? Does it really consist of glorified public-works projects to which the know-how, labor power, goodwill and unlimited financial resources of the American armed forces have been dedicated? Or does the pleasant-sounding word “pacification” refer to something less praiseworthy?

For an answer to these questions some meaningful clues can be found in an enlightening article by Hanson W. Baldwin, military expert of the New York Times and well-known unofficial spokesman of the Pentagon, which appeared in the February 8 issue of the New York Times under the title, ‘Enclave’ Warfare. The article was obviously intended as a serious contribution to the discussion then going on about the “enclave strategy” or “enclave concept” advocated by General James M. Gavin as an alternative to escalation of the war in Vietnam. Baldwin sought to clarify thinking on the subject by relating it to the “pacification” problem.

“In its various interpretations, the enclave concept is actually as old as military history,” Baldwin said. “It involves a recognition, first, that any base of operations must be secure, whether it is called an enclave, a bridgehead, a beachhead or an airhead.

The ‘Ink Blot’ Theory

“A related concept – the ‘ink blot’ or ‘oil-stain’ theory of pacification – is also familiar to military history,” continued the Times expert. “Marshal Louis Lyautey, the French colonizer, used this concept in establishing French control over Madagascar and Morocco; from firmly secured bases, French troops gradually spread out in pacification campaigns over the country, until – like ink blots or spreading oil stains – the operations from one base overlapped those from another, and gradually the area pacified or conquered covered the country.”

We have thus already gained an understanding of the nature of “pacification.” From a spokesman of the American military establishment we have learned that “pacified” and “conquered” are synonymous terms and that there is nothing new about either concept-they are as old as military history!

The American effort to conquer Vietnam is a strategic objective that has to be advanced by tactical means, we further learn. In the military dictionary these means can be either “static” or “active.” The “search-and-clear” tactic now being followed by US troops in Vietnam is an example of an “active” tactical operation. The “enclave” method may appear to belong to the “static” category. But it is a mistake to consider that real alternatives are involved or that the two are mutually exclusive.

“The differences in the two concepts are shadowy at most,” according to Baldwin. “There is virtually unanimous agreement in Vietnam and in Washington that the main-force units, or full-time elements, of the Vietcong must be broken up and crippled and that south Vietnamese civic-action and pacification teams must fill in behind American and South Vietnamese regular troops in area where search-and-clear operations have been conducted.

“Responsible American officers suggest that the static and the active types of defense are complementary and essential, with intensive patrolling to extend control gradually over wide areas and to spread the ‘ink blots,’ and far-flung search-and-destroy operations to seek out the Vietcong and above all to destroy their stocks of rice, supplies and ammunition and their base areas.

“Both the Marines and the Army agree that spreading the ‘ink blots’ and destroying the Vietcong will take several hundred thousand more men than the United States now has in South Vietnam.”

The Johnson administration has mobilized the biggest and most vociferous propaganda machine in all history to put across its claims about trying to “bring Hanoi to the conference table,” about defending South Vietnam from “Communist aggression from the north,” about defending “democracy” and the right of the Vietnamese to self-determination, about “winning the people” with a widespread pacification program. Yet when one of the country’s most prominent military experts, who backs Johnson and the Pentagon to the hilt and who openly advocates a great increase in the escalation of the war (as in his article The Case for Escalation in the February 27 New York Times Magazine) – when this voice of the officer caste chooses to tell us what is really involved, the authority he brings in is no one less than Marshal Louis-Hubert Lyautey, whom he frankly identifies as “the French colonizer.” This tells us a great deal not only about the “pacification program” of the Johnson administration but also about the real aims of the United States in Southeast Asia.

French Colonial Warfare

For material on the central concepts which Johnson and the Pentagon are applying in their war in Vietnam, a readily available source is Makers of Modern Strategy [1], Chapter 10, Bugeaud, Gallieni, Lyautey: The Development of French Colonial Warfare.

The author of this chapter, Jean Gottmann, a teacher in the Army Specialized Training Program at Princeton when this collection of essays on the development of military theory appeared, tells us by way of introduction:

“Colonial warfare is quite different from what is commonly known as continental warfare. It is generally fought in remote countries over large areas of unknown territory, against a foe superior in number and in his knowledge of the terrain but inferior in material organization and in means of supply from abroad. In colonial wars quality must therefore balance a probable inferiority in quantity, and a colonial war is, by its very nature, fought between adversaries of strikingly different levels of civilization.”

By levels of “civilization,” the author obviously means levels of technological development. The imperialist organizers of colonial warfare are invariably more barbarous than the peoples they seek to conquer and subjugate. Photographs of the torture applied to captured “Vietcong” prisoners, and of the indiscriminate maiming and slaughter of civilians down to babes in arms, offer evidence enough that the war in Vietnam is not different in this respect.

Expounding the theory of colonial warfare, Gottmann notes that “as far as possible,” the campaign “must avoid destruction.” One reason is “to preserve the productive potential of the theater of operations,” but more importantly “because the conquered country is to be integrated immediately after the conquest into the ‘imperial’ whole, politically as well as economically.”

“Preserving” the Enemy

Thus it is “desirable” that “the territory should be in the best possible condition when conquest has been effected. The problem is not so much ‘to defeat the enemy in the most decisive manner’ as to subordinate him at the lowest cost and in a way to guarantee permanent pacification.”

French imperialism learned how to do this in practice before it developed the body of military theory which, as can be seen from the references made by Hanson W. Baldwin, still governs thinking in the domain of colonial conquest.

France’s “new colonial expansion” began in June 1830 when an expeditionary force of 37,000 men was landed near Algiers, their purpose being “to avenge an insult to the consul of France by the local ruler, the bey of Algiers.” One hundred and thirty-five years later, President Johnson was to utilize a similar excuse for bombing north Vietnam. It was “in response to provocations ordered and directed by the Hanoi regime”; namely, a guerrilla raid on American installations at Pleiku.

The French forces quickly took Algiers but they ran into difficulty in extending their conquest into the interior.

“The native forces were at home; their chief weapon was mobility. Gathering suddenly at unexpected points, they attacked columns, raided convoys, set French establishments afire; they attacked columns on the flanks and from the rear, inflicting heavy losses, destroying or stealing equipment. Then they disappeared, melting away into the landscape before the heavy European military machine had a chance to re-form and resume operations.”

For ten years the French “generally met disaster,” until in 1840 Marshal Thomas Bugeaud was appointed governor general and commander in chief in Algeria. In six years he pacified the country. He discarded the Napoleonic concepts of warfare that had been perfected in Europe and set out to increase the mobility of the French colonial army, converting it into a force proficient in counterguerrilla war.

One of his primary aims was to strike fear in “the natives.” “In this and many other respects Bugeaud followed the lines of the ancient Roman strategy in Africa.” As with the Romans, Bugeaud took as his principal aim not so much to defeat the indigenous population as to “subdue” them “so that after a defeat they will not attempt to reorganize for battle at another time and place.” This required the employment of economic and political means as well as the force of arms. We see that the concepts operative in modern colonial war do have a respectable age if they are not so respectable in other ways.

Bugeaud, in Gottmann’s opinion, knew how to make his study of history pay off:

“This restoration of the tactics of ancient Rome in the nineteenth century proved wise and successful: Since the epoch of Jugurtha, in defiance of time, neither the terrain nor the tactics of the natives had changed. The methods used by the Romans to conquer the province of Africa was [sic] used by the French with equal success. The thorough training in the classics given in French colleges thus proved an incalculable aid to French generals in Africa.

“Bugeaud, utilizing the Roman battle formation of the square, did not forget the importance of political action in the ancient techniques of empire building. He endeavored to weaken the enemy by internal discord and division, playing on the antagonisms between varied interests, groups, and leaders. Political warfare remained for the French, and for all other expansionist powers, one of the main weapons. Thus Bugeaud laid the foundation of a new school of military thought which developed even more in the following half century. In the ranks of the French armies he was the first soldier of the nineteenth century to renounce Napoleon’s teaching as unsuited to every particular environment. He revived old Roman methods which had yielded good results.”

Bugeaud’s concepts were further developed by Marshal Joseph Gallieni, who became famous among colonial butchers for his skill in “pacification” work in Indochina at the turn of the century, above all in Tonkin, whose capital, Hanoi, is now a familiar name even to children barely old enough to turn on a television switch. Gallieni succeeded in pacifying rebellious Tonkin in four years (1892-96). He was then transferred to Madagascar where his good works gained him even greater renown.

In Indochina Gallieni trained a younger officer from Paris, Louis-Hubert Lyautey, whom he later called to Madagascar for additional experience. Lyautey in time gained an independent niche in the history of imperialist conquest as the pacifier of Morocco. It is mainly to Lyautey that military theory owes the codification of French experience in subduing Indochina, Madagascar and North Africa. In a “brilliant article” published in 1900 Lyautey expounded the concepts that Hanson W. Baldwin refers to in explaining the American effort to pacify Vietnam today.

The first concept is “progressive occupation.” Instead of columns thrusting like spears into the countryside, the front should be a “regularly progressing tide” of occupying forces.

“There was no intention, of course, of suppressing completely the column of attacking troops: Such an operation is generally indispensable at the outset to impress the enemy with his inferiority to the military force of the colonizing power,” Gottmann explains. “But no definite and lasting achievement results from the ‘coup de force’ alone, occupation must follow and here we have Lyautey’s famous statement: ‘Military occupation consists less in military operations that in an organization on the march’.” [Emphasis in original.]

And what does “an organization on the march” mean?

“It is an organization of the conquered territory set up, not behind the active front, but marching step by step with the armies as they advance. This organization must not be simply a new hierarchy imposed on the area but a network covering it, worked out in advance in the most minute detail and with the greatest care.”

General Duchemin, an ardent disciple of Gallieni, drew the following vivid analogy in describing how to handle “pirates” – as guerrilla fighters were called in those days by the imperialist bandits:

“The pirate is a plant which grows only on certain grounds ... The most efficient method is to render the ground unsuitable to him ... There are no pirates in completely organized countries. To pluck wild plants is not sufficient: One must plough the conquered soil, enclose it, and then sow it with the good grain, which is the only means to make it unsuitable to the tares. The same happens on the land desolated by piracy: Armed occupation, with or without armed combat, ploughs it; the establishment of a military belt encloses and isolates it; finally the reconstitution and equipment of the population, the installation of markets and cultures, the construction of roads, sow the good grain and make the conquered region unsuitable to the pirate, if it is not the latter himself who, transformed, cooperates in this evolutionary process.”

The language of this official 1895 report to the governor general of Indochina sounds rather quaint in 1966. However, aside from its elaborate metaphors and its antiquated frankness, it sounds like an extract from some of the current material produced by spokesmen of the Johnson administration concerning the problem of “pacifying” the same territory seventy years later and making it “unsuitable to the tares” of the “Vietcong.”

Besides “an organization on the march,” a correct political approach is an absolute essential. This was stressed by Gallieni himself in instructions issued May 22, 1898, at Madagascar:

“The best means for achieving pacification in our new colony is provided by combined application of force and politics. It must be remembered that, in the course of colonial struggles, we should turn to destruction only as a last resort and only as a preliminary to better reconstruction. We must always treat the country and its inhabitants with consideration, since the former is destined to receive our future colonial enterprises and the latter will be our main agents and collaborators in the development of our enterprises.

“Every time that the necessities of war force one of our colonial officers to take action against a village or an inhabited center, his first concern, once submission of the inhabitants has been achieved, should be reconstruction of the village, creation of a market, and establishment of a school. It is by combined use of politics and force that pacification of a country and its future organization will be achieved. Political action is by far the more important. It derives its greater power from the organization of the country and its inhabitants.” [Emphasis in the original.]

This really has a modern ring! Our first concern must be reconstruction-once submission of the inhabitants has been secured ... What else but such topics did Johnson discuss with his protégé Ky at Honolulu?

“As pacification gains ground,” continued Gallieni, “the country becomes more civilized, markets are reopened, trade is re-established. The role of the soldier becomes of secondary importance. The activity of the administrator begins. It is necessary, on the one hand, to study and satisfy the social requirements of the subject people and, on the other hand, to promote the development of colonization, which will utilize the natural resources of the soil and open the outlets for European trade.”

That should now read “American” trade, of course.

Besides “progressive occupation,” and “organization on the march,” Lyautey stresses the conversion of the colonial army into an administrative setup in which the police function is relegated to “special troops, the military and civilian police.”

From Terror to Reconstruction

In other words, the troops that invade a country marked for imperialist victimization deliberately aim in their first moves to strike the deepest possible fear and terror in the indigenous population by demonstrating an implacability and military superiority that appear absolutely invincible.

Then through a series of transitional stages this same occupation force moves toward reconstruction, toward the conversion of leading indigenous figures into servile agents (the “anti-Communists” of today), and finally toward domination of the country’s economy, complete control of its politics, and – in the good old days of imperialism – outright administration.

With this pattern clearly conceived from the very beginning, the imperialist conquerors try to keep their tactics supple so as to facilitate passing over into the successive stages as smoothly as possible. In fact, they seek to combine them where it can be done. “Pacification” is viewed as part and parcel of military action – the positive component of the war of conquest.

In 1903 Lyautey was sent to western Algeria where Moroccan tribes were giving the French imperialists “trouble.” His assignment was to “pacify” Morocco. This took many years, the climax coming after 1912 when he was made the resident general and commander in chief of the country, a post he kept until 1925. In a letter to Gallieni dated November 14, 1903, Lyautey outlined his objectives. Gottmann describes them as follows:

“Two points in particular deserve special comment for they were to remain the bases of Lyautey’s Moroccan strategy and policy. 1. In the field of diplomacy he advocated a loyal alliance with the sultan’s government and representatives. No action was to be taken in Moroccan territory except in agreement with the official Moroccan authorities and with their help. This ‘entente cordiale’ was the basis of the protectorate.

“2. In the field of strategy one paragraph of the letter is fundamental: ‘In fact, the final establishment of the system of protection that I project will be accomplished very gradually; it would be impossible for me to assign even an approximate date for its realization, although I incline to believe that the result can be achieved more rapidly than most people think. It will advance not by column, nor by mighty blows, but as a patch of oil spreads, through a step by step progression, playing alternately on all the local elements, utilizing the divisions and rivalries between tribes and between their chiefs.’ The strategy of the ‘oil patch,’ the famous ‘tâche d’huile,’ will take its place in history as the phrase which best characterizes the French penetration and pacification of Morocco.”

Lyautey’s work in Morocco “is now reputed to be the masterpiece of French colonization,” according to Gottmann. In 1912, when Lyautey began final operations, the country was in “complete revolt.” In two expeditions Lyautey re-established control of the main cities.

“Those were swift and daring blows, frequently studied since and described by colonial and military historians as models. The speed of the initial success was largely due to Lyautey’s policy with respect to the natives which was put into effect from the first day. Its ultimate success depended, of course, on the period that followed.”

The secret was to combine the military blows with “organization on the march ... To support the advancing front, a large scale and costly policy of economic development was immediately started in the rear: The hostile tribes had to be convinced of the advantages of French rule. In two years appreciable results were obtained.” Lyautey called it the “policy of the smile.”

In the final stage the tactic of the “oil patch” was used to conquer the mountain fastnesses where tribes lived that “accepted no rule, not even that of the sultan, and they were determined to fight to death against the foreigners.” Lyautey’s sophisticated strategy proved sufficient to subdue them – at least for a time.

Technological Advances

Since Lyautey’s day, the imperialist military theory of colonial war has made no basic advance.

“The principal improvements added to Lyautey’s strategy and tactics after 1925,” Gottmann notes, “were largely due to the extensive use by his pupils of the newest weapons which advancing military technology put at their disposal: the motor car and the airplane. Both fitted admirably into the Moroccan picture, for the dominant trend of colonial warfare was toward increased mobility. Henceforth the tools were at hand. Motorization of the columns and of the services of supply greatly increased the speed and effectiveness of encircling movements and surprise blows. Bombing from the air robbed the natives of their chief trump card: fire from dominating positions in the mountains. These modern methods were especially employed in the last steps of the Moroccan pacification of 1931-1934.”

In his Instruction Generate, issued February 19, 1932, General Huré summed up the directives for the employment of motorized columns.

“It shows,” says Gottmann, “the application of both Bugeaud’s and Lyautey’s lessons: Attack is made on large fronts ensuring the safety of the rear; in the mountains, action is through parallel or convergent valley; attack is by surprise from bases carefully prepared in the rear and progressing with rapidity. The terrain is conquered by auxiliary units, artillery and air force, then occupied by the regular troops (native troops have a better knowledge of the terrain and a greater mobility but, as they are unable to hold the area taken, this is done by the regular troops which thus will have to fight only in defensive positions). The terrain must be organized as soon as conquered – shovels and pick axes are as necessary as rifles and guns; every conquered position must be linked to the rear by a road as soon as possible; it is by means of roads that the country is controlled.”

How little has been changed in the basic concepts of colonial war since Lyautey’s time is indicated by the obeisance paid to the master by Hanson W. Baldwin. It is thus quite natural that in an article published in the May 1, 1966, New York Times dealing specifically with the “new weapons, new tactics, new ideas” being tested in the “proving ground” of the war in Vietnam, the same author lists only technological advances.

In Baldwin’s opinion, “the most important single development is the extensive use of helicopters to provide tactical mobility for the ground forces.”

In addition there are “new types of shallow-water coastal patrol and river craft.”

Land war has been improved – how meanings are reversed in this world of carnage! – by such “gadgets” as the Claymore mine, “an electrically controlled, directional mine which when detonated spews out a broadsword of steel pellets mowing down everything in its path.” But “unfortunately,” as Baldwin sees it, “the Vietcong” have been able to manufacture the mine in a cruder “but effective” form in their “jungle factories.”

Warning devises and air reconnaissance have been developed, too.

As for basic operational concepts, these appear to remain unchanged. Baldwin says nothing about the subject in his article dealing with “new ideas.” Lyautey’s writings still constitute the Pentagon’s bible in the general strategy of colonial war.

Will the Pentagon succeed in its “pacification program”? With say 750,000 US troops and a campaign lasting the “five to ten years or more” mentioned by some specialists in Washington as the probable duration of the conflict?

This is highly dubious, to say the least. It is a considerable error to think that in Vietnam what can be expected is a repetition of French experience in conquering Indochina, Algeria, Madagascar and Morocco with American military prowess compensating for the handicaps involved in pacifying “natives” who have already been “pacified” many times.

First of all, there is the continual very grave danger that the war will escalate beyond control, terminating in a nuclear conflagration. Baldwin himself sees Vietnam as “two proving grounds.” The one involves a colonial war of conquest, the other is “like the Spanish civil war of 1936-39” which was a proving ground for World War II. In north Vietnam, he observes,

“... both sides have utilized some of the same type weapons that might be utilized in modern all-out nuclear war – the latest jet fighters, fighter-bombers and bombers, air-to-air and anti-aircraft missiles, sophisticated radars, robot and other reconnaissance planes, aircraft carriers and specialized aircraft fitted to jam the enemy’s electronics systems.”

In other words, there is a strong tendency for the war in Vietnam to be superseded by a conflict with China and the Soviet Union that could escalate into a nuclear confrontation. This is widely recognized. Baldwin’s allusion is correct. American intervention in Vietnam does resemble the intervention of imperialist Germany and Italy in the Spanish Civil War.

Revolutionary Expertise

Second, the accumulated experience of the Vietnamese people counts heavily in the scales in the conflict with American imperialism. They are no longer the same kind of people as those on whom Gallieni and Lyautey first tested out their concepts. Besides their early experience with French imperialism, the Vietnamese have added the experience of the struggle with the Japanese imperialist invaders and then the invasion mounted by the French once more after World War II.

In each case the imperialist invaders followed the same basic concepts-the concepts of Bugeaud, Galliéni and Lyautey, right down to the “oil spot” technique, the use of economic blandishments and the support of venal types in the national political arena willing to betray their people and serve as puppets. The Vietnamese people know all the schemes and strategems of “pacification” including such ingenious variants as the construction of “model fortified hamlets”; i.e., concentration camps, protected by belts of barbed wire and guarded by praetorians armed with automatic weapons, into which the peasants were herded like cattle after their own homes and villages were burned and suspected members of the “Vietcong” were shot or disembowled. After these searing experiences, the Vietnamese know by second nature what the “pacification” game of the latest invaders is. They are no longer easily taken in by imperialist lies and economic bait. Nor are they easily overawed or terrorized.

Third, they are conscious of being part of the colonial revolution that has swept through Asia, Africa and Latin America. Despite the defeats suffered in this colossal upsurge, as in Brazil, Indonesia and Ghana, the victories, above all in China, Cuba and Vietnam itself, have left an indelible impression. The Vietnamese people know that whatever the temporary ups and downs the future lies with their cause.

Fourth, however limited it may be, material aid can be obtained from the workers states. The Vietnamese are not isolated as were the Algerians in the forties of the past century or the Moroccans or their own grandparents. Moreover the flow of material aid may greatly increase once it sinks into the heads of the bureaucrats in Peking and Moscow that their fate, too, is involved in this struggle.

Fifth, the mere existence of workers states like the Soviet Union, China, Cuba and the East European countries serves as a constant reminder that it is possible to pass beyond capitalism and to win at least the forms of socialism which have a power of their own, as life has now proved beyond all doubt. This is an immense sustainer of revolutionary morale among the guerrilla fighters.

Sixth, in north Vietnam itself the Vietnamese have an example of a workers state which they can easily compare with the puppet regime maintained in south Vietnam by American imperialist troops. This constitutes a most powerful incentive for them to continue their struggle. After the murderous Diem family, the Hitler-loving Ky and the whole succession of foul puppet dictators installed in office one after the other by the democracy-preaching Americans as the “government” of south Vietnam, under the overall pacification program, north Vietnam begins to look like a paradise.

Moreover, the perspective for uniting their country and achieving both political and economic freedom from imperialism and indigenous capitalism and landlordism appears highly realistic with a Vietnamese workers state already going. Against the living reality of north Vietnam, the “positive” side of Johnsonn’s “pacification program” has little chance of attracting widespread support.

Seventh, the American invaders themselves inspire fresh revolt with their arrogance, their brutality, their “American Way of Life” publicized with napalm, noxious gases, high explosives and other fiendish instruments of mass murder and immense destruction. This is a prime source of the political developments in south Vietnam that have left Ky nothing in the way of support except the puppet strings he is dangling from.

Finally, the Vietnamese people have been greatly encouraged by the unmistakable signs of the mounting unpopularity of Johnson’s escalation of the war among the American people. The antiwar demonstrations, teach-ins and similar actions inside the US itself not only confirm the justness of their cause; they reveal that the would-be imperialist conquerors are politically vulnerable in their own country. The weapon of politics is turning against the disciples of Lyautey!

It is one of the ironies of history that when the fate of French imperialism at Dien Bien-phu is recalled, or its still worse defeat at the hands of the Algerians, the Pentagon spokesmen respond with the reminder that the United States is not France and Americans are not like the French; yet the Pentagon is attempting to conquer Vietnam utilizing concepts developed by the French generals of the France of another day which proved to be outmoded! These concepts belong to a past epoch – the heyday of imperialist conquest. They have lost correspondence with realities in the colonial world particularly on the political side. Vietnam, we may expect, will turn out to be the “proving ground” that will confirm this conclusion in a way that will silence even the most dogmatic of Lyautey’s modern disciples.



1. This book, edited by Edward Mead Earle, was published in 1944 by Princeton University Press. Among other things it contains some interesting appreciations of the contributions of Marx, Engels, Lenin and Trotsky in the military field. Some flattery of Stalin is also included, no doubt as a diplomatic gesture toward an ally in World War II.


Last updated on: 7.3.2006