THE NATION: The Will to Victory

Men, millions of them, have died as bravely before—and not long before. The defense and fall of Dienbienphu raised a lump in the world's throat not because the quality of courage displayed there was unique but because Dienbienphu was set apart, catching the eye and the heart by contrast. It was geographically isolated. It was a pitched battle, one of the few in a shapeless, sceneless guerrilla war. Tactically, the defense was conducted with a coherent resolution of command; from inside Dienbienphu there came from first to last not a sign of hesitation or doubt about what had to...

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