Robert S. McNamara was the official face of Vietnam, the technocrat with steel-rimmed glasses and an ironclad faith in numbers who kept insisting that the war was winnable long after he had ceased to believe it was.
In his insightful, morally devastating book, The Living and the Dead, Paul Hendrickson juxtaposes Robert S. McNamara’s story with those of a wounded Marine, an Army nurse, a Vietnamese refugee, a Quaker who burned himself to death to protest the war, and an enraged artist who tried to kill the man he saw as the war’s architect. This is the brilliant, emotional coda where, in meticulous yet compassionate prose, Hendrickson captures his chase after the story of the man and the haunted years of McNamara’s life after Vietnam.
A Vintage Shorts Vietnam Selection. An ebook short.
PAUL HENDRICKSON is the author of the New York Times best seller and National Book Critics Circle Award finalist, Hemingway’s Boat: Everything He Loved in Life, and Lost, and Sons of Mississippi: A Story of Race and Its Legacy, which won the 2003 National Book Critics… More about Paul Hendrickson