A War of Illusions
Vietnam is the size of Finland or of Missouri and Arkansas combined, with an area of 127,000 square miles. The Vietnamese revolution was not organized; it was led by illiterate paupers and desperate peasants. Many Vietnamese served with the armies of France in Europe and learned much about the great outside world. They returned home to find conditions in their country very disillusioning. Nationalist parties in Vietnam were urban and elitist, with little idea of either the necessity or the means of appealing to the peasantry. The inability to come up with a long-range and realistic revolutionary strategy resulted in adventurist and premature uprisings.
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