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The locale may have changed--Greece, the Philippines, Vietnam, Africa, Central America--but the strategy was the same: a proxy action by the US government fought on the cheap and on the sly against the Soviet Union. This cautionary history by McClintock (The American Connection, 1985--not reviewed) makes extensive use of declassified and previously unpublished documents, but never breathes life into this sordid tale. McClintock finds that unconventional warfare resulted largely from anticommunist fervor and studies of the new type of war waged by both Axis and Allied powers in WW II. With Third World brushfire conflicts breaking out in the postwar period, US policymakers saw guerrilla warfare as a means of striking back against the USSR by ``fighting fire with fire,'' yet without resorting to open intervention. American units, including the OSS, the CIA, the Green Berets, and the Delta Force, taught surrogates such techniques as assassination (the infamous contra manual), sabotage, kidnapping, coups, and torture. This isn't news, of course, having been covered in analyses of CIA excesses against Castro, counterinsurgency doctrine in Vietnam, and the Iran-contra scandal, but McClintock supplies a context and many new details, particularly on how special-warfare doctrine has been employed even in the post-cold war era, in fighting the Gulf War and Latin American druglords. And while McClintock's questions--is unconventional warfare consistent with American ideas of humanitarianism and liberty, and is it even effective in the long run?--are important, they lose their force amid his turgid prose and lumbering narrative. A controversial, often dismaying chapter in American history, examined with depth but not grace. -- Copyright ©1991, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.From Publishers Weekly:
McClintock ( The American Connection ) takes a sweeping look at secret U.S. military operations during the past 50 years, particularly "special warfare." He notes that America learned techniques of secret warfare in WW II and utilized them early on to influence Third World governments that emerged from the postwar collapse of colonial empires. The book profiles Edward Lansdale, counterinsurgency adviser to President Kennedy who advocated psychological warfare in the Philippines and Vietnam. McClintock outlines the development of special warfare from the end of the Vietnam war to the last days of the Reagan administration, tracing U.S. actions in Central America and the Middle East. Factually reliable but lacking in interpretation, the survey is so broad in scope that one is not always certain what points are being made.
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Descrizione libro Pantheon Books, 1992. Hardcover. Condizione libro: New. Brand New. Ships within 24 hous with tracking.100% Money-Back Guarantee. Packed with care. Codice libro della libreria mon0000006737
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