World: The ABCDs of Pacification

PACIFICATION, South Viet Nam's "other war," has been waged in one guise or another since the days of the French. In the 1950s there was the abortive agroville program of agricultural resettlement. In the early 1960s came the U.S. concept of "strategic hamlets," which were meant to fortify rural areas to protect peasants from Communist attack. By 1966 President Johnson was referring to pacification as "the other war," or "the struggle to win the hearts and minds of the people." Whatever its name, the object of pacification for nearly two decades has been to...