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Clark CliffordThe Wise Man of Washington$
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John Acacia

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780813125510

Published to Kentucky Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.5810/kentucky/9780813125510.001.0001

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I Search for Why I Find Myself Constantly Alone

I Search for Why I Find Myself Constantly Alone

(p.283) 10 I Search for Why I Find Myself Constantly Alone
Clark Clifford

John Acacia

University Press of Kentucky

President Lyndon B. Johnson did not move decisively to bring the Vietnam War to an end although he had publicly proclaimed his desire for peace during a primetime television address, and had sacrificed his political ambitions in the process. The president's vacillation, emotional outbursts, and unpredictable behavior were an endless source of frustration for Clark Clifford, who could never be certain that he had the president's support. In sending mixed messages Johnson also exacerbated the rivalry between Clifford and hawks Dean Rusk and Walt Rostow, who continued to argue that America's prestige and security were at stake in Southeast Asia. At times the bureaucratic infighting was vicious, as Clifford's adversaries sought to discredit him in front of the president and disregarded his authority over the military. Although he had allies in the Pentagon and White House, among Johnson's senior foreign policy advisers Clifford was very much alone.

Keywords:   Lyndon B. Johnson, Vietnam War, Clark Clifford, Dean Rusk, Walt Rostow, America, Southeast Asia, Pentagon, White House, foreign policy

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