"The war in Vietnam was not lost in the field, nor was it lost on the front pages of the New York Times or the college campuses. It was lost in Washington, D.C." —H. R. McMaster (from the Conclusion)
Dereliction Of Duty is a stunning analysis of how and why the United States became involved in an all-out and disastrous war in Southeast Asia. Fully and convincingly researched, based on transcripts and personal accounts of crucial meetings, confrontations and decisions, it is the only book that fully re-creates what happened and why. McMaster pinpoints the policies and decisions that got the United States into the morass and reveals who made these decisions and the motives behind them, disproving the published theories of other historians and excuses of the participants.
A page-turning narrative, Dereliction Of Duty focuses on a fascinating cast of characters: President Lyndon Johnson, Robert McNamara, General Maxwell Taylor, McGeorge Bundy and other top aides who deliberately deceived the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the U.S. Congress and the American public.
McMaster’s only book, Dereliction of Duty is an explosive and authoritative new look at the controversy concerning the United States involvement in Vietnam.
H. R. McMaster is the Fouad and Michelle Ajami Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution and Stanford University. He is also the Susan and Bernard Liautaud Fellow at The Freeman Spogli Institute and Lecturer at the Stanford Graduate School of Business. He serves as chairman of the advisory board of the Center on Military and Political Power at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and the Japan Chair at the Hudson Institute. A native of Philadelphia, H.R. graduated from the United States Military Academy in 1984. He served as a U.S. Army officer for thirty-four years and retired as a lieutenant general in 2018. He remained on active duty while serving as the twenty-sixth assistant to the president for national security affairs. He taught history at West Point and holds a PhD in history from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.