South Viet Nam: The Firing Line

In the midst of his speech on the Berlin crisis, President John F. Kennedy took time to remind his listeners that the West faced an equally dangerous Communist challenge 5,000 miles away on the other side of the world—in Southeast Asia, where, said the President, "the borders are less guarded, the enemy harder to find, and the dangers of Communism less apparent to those who have so little."

Every night furtive little bands of Communist guerrillas, dressed in black peasant pajamas or faded khakis, splash through the marshes of...

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