Vietnamese Conflict


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Air Interdiction in World War II, Korea, and Vietnam, edited with an Introduction by Richard H. Kohn and Joseph P. Harahan. Washington, Office of Air Force History, 1986. 105 p. (USAF Warrior Studies)
An Interview with Gen Earle E. Partridge, Gen Jacob E. Smart, and Gen John W. Vogt, Jr.
The Vietnam War, pp 58-86.
Bibliography, pp 97-99; Index, pp 101-105.
Also available online at:
Book call no.: 358.4142 P275a

Air Power History Turning Points from Kitty Hawk to Kosovo, edited by Sebastian Cox and Peter Gray. London, Frank Cass, 2002. 362 p. (Cass series studies in air power, no. 13)
Each paper considers the significant turning point in the air conflict considered: these include the 1991 bombing of Baghdad, Britain and NATO's strategy in Kosovo, the UK's doctrine and practice during the Gulf War, air tactics in North Africa during WWII, Soviet air doctrine from 1935-1941, and the development of air power during WWI.
Book call no.
358.4009 A2981

The American War in Vietnam: Lessons, Legacies, and Implications for Future Conflicts, edited by Lawrence E. Grinter and Peter M. Dunn. New York, Greenwood Press, 1987. 165 p. (Contributions in Military Studies, Number 67)
Part III. How the War Was Fought:
   Vietnam: The Cost of Ignoring the Political Requirements, by Lawrence E. Grinter, pp 29-48. (Notes, pp 46-48).
   Lost Opportunities: The Air War in Vietnam, 1961-1973, by Alan L. Gropman, pp 49-67. (Notes, pp 64-67).
   Air Power in Vietnam: The Hubris of Power, by Earl H. Tilford, Jr., pp 69-83. (Notes, pp 81-83).
Part V. The War's Legacy for Future U.S. Conflict Performance:
   Counterinsurgency Doctrine and Low-Intensity Conflict in the Post-Vietnam Era, by John D. Waghelstein, pp 127-137. (Notes, p 137).
Book call no.: 959.7043373 A512

Armitage, M. J. and Mason, R. A. Air Power in the Nuclear Age. Second Edition. Urbana, University of Illinois Press, 1985. 318 p.
Chapter 4. The Air War in South-East Asia, pp 83-113.
Notes and References to Chapter 4, pp 289-291.
Select Bibliography and Further Reading, pp 303-318.
Book call no.: 358.400904 A733a 1985

Boyne, Walter J. Silver Wings--The Human and Technological Achievements in the History of the United States Air Force. New York, Simon & Schuster, 1993. 336 p.
Foreword by General James H. Doolittle.
Introductory Note by Lee Ewing.
Chapter Three. The Trying Years of the Golden Age, 1919-1939, pp 81-126. (Creating the Doctrine, pp 90-92).
Chapter Four. The Challenge of the Century, 1940-1945, pp 127-175.
Suggested Reading, p 332.
Index, pp 333-336.
Book call no.: 358.400973 B792s

Center for Air Force History. Case Studies in the Achievement of Air Superiority, edited by Benjamin Franklin Cooling. Washington, 1994. 678 p. (Special Studies)
Chapter 10. Southeast Asia, by Thomas C. Hone, pp 505-562.
Notes, pp 557-559.
Bibliographical Essay, pp 560-562.
Also available online at:
Book call no.: 358.414 C337

Clodfelter, Mark. The Limits of Air Power: The American Bombing of North Vietnam. New York, Free Press, 1989. 297 p.
Notes, pp 211-261.
Bibliography, pp 263-283.
Index, pp 285-297.
See Index for subjects: Air commanders: doctrinal and moral beliefs of; Basic Doctrine (Manual 1-1/1-2); Bombing doctrine, Air Force; Doctrinal manuals, Air Force ("Basic Doctrine" (Manual 1-1); "Basic Doctrine" (Manual 1-2); "Strategic Air Operations" (Manual 1-8); "Theater Air Forces in Counter Air, Interdiction and Close Air Support Operations" (Manual 1-7); Korean War, bombing doctrine after; LeMay, Curtis E., Air Force bombing doctrine under; On strategic bombing's efficacy; Rolling Thunder, Air Force bombing doctrine; Theater (tactical) vs. strategic air actions; USAF in Limited War.
Book call no.: 959.704348 C643L

Fabyanic, Thomas A. Strategic Air Attack in the United States Air Force: A Case Study. Manhattan, KS, Military Affairs/Aerospace Historian, Kansas State University, 1976. 206 p. 
Chapter VI. Limited Strategic Attack in the Nuclear Era: Korea and Vietnam, pp 142-158.
   Vietnam, pp 152-158.
Notes on Chapter VI, pp 199-201.
Also published as Air War College Research Report, M-U 32983 F136s.
Book call no.: 358.42 F136s

Futrell, Robert Frank. Ideas, Concepts, Doctrine: Basic Thinking in the United States Air Force, 1961-1984, Volume II. Maxwell AFB, AL, Air University Press, December 1989. 789 p.
Chapter 4. Insurgency and War in Southeast Asia, pp 255-331.
Notes, pp 323-331.
Also available online at:
Book call no.: 358.0973 A298i 1989

The Future of Air Power in the Aftermath of the Gulf War, edited by Richard H. Shultz, Jr. and Robert L. Pfaltzgraff, Jr. Maxwell AFB, AL, Air University Press, 1992. 374 p. (Center for Aerospace Doctrine, Research and Education Publication)
Air Power since World War II--Consistent with Doctrine, by Dr. Williamson Murray, pp 95-113. (Notes, pp 110-113).
Also available online at:
Book call no.: 358.403 F996

Gilster, Herman L. The Air War in Southeast Asia: Case Studies of Selected Campaigns. Maxwell AFB, AL, Air University Press, 1993. 138 p.
"The greatest success of both air and ground forces in modern times have come in short, intense combined arms campaigns: the German blitzkriegs of World War II, the Normandy invasion, the Six-Day War in the Mideast, and most recently, Desert Storm, to name a few. These successes suggest that military doctrine should be structured so that air power is used in conjunction with other forces in fast and dramatic moves which give no opportunity for the principle of substitution to come into play. It was with such a strategy that Hitler quickly conquered almost the whole of Europe. And it was when he deviated from this strategy that he began to fail."
Includes bibliographical references and index.
Also available online at:
Book call no.: 959.704348 G489a

Hadley, Arthur T. The Straw Giant--Triumph and Failure: America's Armed Forces. New York, Random House, 1986. 314 p.
Chapter Six: Vietnam--The Giant Stumbles, pp 167-187.
Bibliographic Notes, pp 307-311.
Book call no.: 355.00973 H131s

Herzog, Serge. Defense Reform and Technology: Tactical Aircraft. Westport, CT, Praeger, 1994. 206 p.
Chapter 4. Reformers and Air Combat History, pp 69-109.
   The Air War in Vietnam, pp 74-81.
Selected Bibliography, pp 185-200.
Index, pp 201-206.
Book call no.: 358.403 H582d

Lambeth, Benjamin J. The Transformation of American Air Power. Ithaca, NY, Cornell University Press, 2000. 337 p.
An introduction to the principal air power issues confronting the United States today. Through a review of American experience from the Vietnam War to the Balkans, Lambeth provides historical underpinnings for the current air power debate.
Book call no.
358.400973 L223t

MacCloskey, Monro. The United States Air Force. New York, Praeger, 1967. 244 p.
Chapter XIII. Aerospace Doctrine in Modern Conflict, by LtCol Walter S. Vancleave, USAF, pp 207-224.
Bibliography, pp 237-238; Index, pp 239-244.
Book call no.: 358.0973 M127u

Momyer, William W. Airpower in Three Wars (WWII, Korea, Vietnam). Reprint edition. Maxwell AFB, AL, Air University Press, 2003. 401 p.
See Index for Subject: Doctrine.
Index, pp 381-401.
Also available online at:
Book call no.: 358.4 M733a  2003

A Quarter Century of Air Power: Studies in the Employment of Air Power, 1947-1972, edited by John H. Scrivner, Jr. Maxwell AFB, AL, Air University, Air Force ROTC, 1973. 249 p.
Chapter 5. Air Power Against Insurgency in Southeast Asia, 1950-1965, by Dr. Robert F. Futrell.
   Footnotes, pp 147-148.
Chapter 6. Air Power Against North Vietnamese Aggression, 1965-1971, by Dr. Robert F. Futrell, pp 149-187.
   Footnotes, pp 186-187.
Book call no.: 358.40973 S434q

Service Historique de l'Armée de l'Air. Colloque International "Histoire de la Guerre Aerienne", edited by Gen Lucien Robineau. Paris, 1987. 395 p.
Presentation in the English language:
   The United States Air Force Adapts for the Vietnam War, by Jacob Neufeld, pp 355-366.
   Endnotes, p 367; Bibliography, p 368.
Book call no.: 358.4009 C714c

Sharp, U. S. G. and Westmoreland, W. C. Report on the War in Vietnam (As of 30 June 1968). Washington, U.S. G.P.O., 1968. 347 p.
Section I. Report on Air and Naval Campaigns Against North Vietnam and Pacific Command-Wide Support of the War, June 1964-July 1968, by Admiral U.S.G. Sharp, USN, Commander in Chief Pacific, pp 11-68.
Index to Report on the War in Vietnam, 34 p following p 347.
Book call no.: 959.7 P117r

Sharp, U. S. G. Strategy for Defeat: Vietnam in Retrospect. Novato, CA, Presidio Press, 1998. 324 p.
Chapter 6. ROLLING THUNDER: On the Beginning, pp 63-80.
Chapter 28. The December 1972 Bombing Campaign Against North Vietnam, pp 251-258.
Notes, pp 307-311.
Index, pp 313-324.
Book call no.: 959.7 S531s 1998

Tilford, Earl H., Jr. CROSSWINDS: The Air Force's Setup in Vietnam. College Station, Texas A&M University Press, 1993. 252 p. (Texas A&M Military History Series, 30)
Foreword by Caroline F. Ziemke.
Notes, pp 203-229.
Bibliography, pp 230-239.
Index, pp 240-252.
Book call no.: 959.704348 T572c

Tilford, Earl H., Jr. SETUP: What the Air Force Did in Vietnam and Why. Maxwell AFB, AL, Air University Press, 1991. 308 p.
Chapter 6. Completing the Setup:
Why Did Air Power Fail? History; Doctrine; Technology; Management; Decreased Intellectual Acumen; Some Generic Reasons; Unhealthy Myths, pp 283-299. (Notes, pp 297-299).
See Index for subject: Douhet, Giulio.
Index, pp 301-308.
Also available online at:
Book call no.: 959.740348 T572s

U.S. Air Force. USAF Southeast Asia Monograph Series, edited by Arthur J.C. Lavalle. Washington, Department of the Air Force, 1975-1979. 9 Monographs in 7 vols.
"For the general reader, these stories tell of airpower in human terms and should give some understanding of the spirit, courage, and professionalism of our U.S. airmen. To the student of airpower interested in improving the effectiveness of our Air Force, the monographs make an excellent case study of tactical air doctrine." (Quoted from the Foreword by David J. Jones, General, USAF).
Monograph 1. The Tale of Two Bridges, by Col Delbert Corum and others
Monograph 2. The Battle for the Skies Over North Vietnam 1964-1972, by Maj Paul Burbage and others.
Monograph 3. Airpower and the 1972 Spring Invasion, by Col John A. Doglione and others.
Monograph 4. The Vietnamese Air Force, 1951-1975, An Analysis of Its Role in Combat, by William W. Momyer, Gen, USAF, Ret.
Monograph 5. Fourteen Hours at Koh Tang, 29 December 1975, by Capt Thomas D. Des Brisay.
Monograph 6. Last Flight From Saigon, by Thomas G. Tobin, LtCol, USAF.
Monograph 7. Airpower and the Airlift Evacuation of Kham Duc, by LtCol Alan L. Gropman.
Monograph 8. LINEBACKER II: A View From the Rock, by BrigGen James R. McCarthy and LtCol George B. Allison.
Monograph 9. Air Force Heroes in Vietnam, by Maj Donald K. Schneider.
Also available online at:
Book call no.: 959 A2981u 7 vols.

U.S. Air Force. Office of Air Force History. Case Studies in the Development of Close Air Support, edited by Benjamin Franklin Cooling. Washington, 1990. 606 p. (Special Studies)
Southeast Asia, by John J. Sbrega, pp 411-490. (Notes, pp 474-485; Bibliographical Essay, pp 486-490).
A Retrospect on Close Air Support, by I.B. Holley, Jr., pp 535-555.
Also available online at:
Book call no.: 358.4142 C337

The United States Air Force in Southeast Asia, 1961-1973: An Illustrated Account, edited by Carl Berger. Revised Edition. Washington, U.S. Air Force, Office of Air Force History, 1984. 383 p.
Chapter I. Introduction, by Carl Berger, pp 3-13.
Chapter II. Air Operations in South Vietnam, 1962-1964, by Dr. R. Frank Futrell, pp 15-35.
Chapter III. The In-Country Air War, 1965-1972, by LtCol Ralph A. Rowley, pp 37-67.
Chapter IV. The Air War Against North Vietnam, by Jacob Van Staaveren, pp 69-99.
Index, pp 374-383.
Book call no.: 959.7 U582 1984

War from Above the Clouds: B-52 Operations During the Second Indochina War and the Effects of the Air War on Theory and Doctrine. Maxwell AFB, AL, Air University Press, 2002. 138 p.   (Fairchild paper)
Also available online at:
Book call no. 959.704348 H432w


Some of the documents cited in this section are student papers written to fulfill PME school requirements.

Drake, Ricky James. The Rules of Defeat: The Impact of Aerial Rules of Engagement on USAF Operations in North Vietnam, 1965-1968. Maxwell AFB, AL, Air University Press, June 1993. 38 p. (Air University. School of Advanced Airpower Studies. Thesis)
"This paper examines the effect of these rules (ROEs) on the military execution of the Rolling Thunder air campaign, as well as their impact on American aircrews and the enemy. ROEs violated United States Air Force doctrine and stood in stark contrast to accepted principles of war."
Bibliography, pp 35-38.
Also available online at:
Doc. call no.: M-U 43998-1 D762r

Drew, Dennis M.  ROLLING THUNDER 1965: Anatomy of a Failure. Maxwell AFB, AL, Air University, Center for Aerospace Doctrine, Research, and Education, October 1986. 60 p. (CADRE Paper, Report No. AU-ARI-CP-86-3)
"This study illustrates how American air power doctrine developed in a manner incompatible with the employment required over North Vietnam and how even the best military advice can be ignored if it does not conform to the objectives of the civilian leadership. Moreover, the study indicates that even if the military had been allowed to carry out its desired intensive bombing campaign, the results might not have changed. Finally, the study indicates the problems inherent in developing effective air power doctrine across the spectrum of modern conflict."
Notes, pp 52-58.
Also available online at:
Doc. call no.: M-U 37097-36 No.86-3

Ellsworth, John K. Operation ROLLING THUNDER: A Strategic Implications of Airpower Doctrine. Carlisle Barracks, PA, U.S. Army War College, 2003. 24 p.
Also available online at:
Doc. call no. M-U 39080-537 E472o

Rand Corp. A Note on Tactical vs. Strategic Air Interdiction, by Edmund Dews. Santa Monica, CA, April 1970. 10 p. (Memorandum, RM-6239-PR)
"That this is more than just a semantic problem is clear when one considers its doctrinal and force-structure implications."
Doc. call no.: M-U 30352-9 No.6239-PR

Research Guide to Contemporary Historical Examination of Current Operations (CHECO) Reports of Southeast Asia (1961-1975), compiled by Secretary of Air Force Southeast Asia Declassification and Review Team. Maxwell AFB, AL, Air Force Historical Research Agency, 1992.     110 p.
Subject Index, pp 92-106.
Author Index, pp 107-110.
Doc. call no.: M-U 33443-4 1992

Smith, Russell H. Gradualism and the Air War Against North Vietnam. Maxwell AFB, AL, May 1971. 17 p. (Air University. Air War College Military Essay)
"Gradualism is defined and differentiated from flexible response. The planning for and conduct of the air war are analyzed against accepted Air Force doctrine."
Bibliography, p 17.
Doc. call no.: M-U 32983 S6584g

Whatley, Douglas E. The Effectiveness of U.S. Airpower in the Air Campaign Over North Vietnam. Maxwell AFB, AL, April 1970. 46 p. (Air University. Air War College. Research Report)
"The author concludes that United States airpower failed to accomplish its objectives because of overly restrictive controls, limitations, political miscalculations and the doctrine of gradualism."
Notes, pp 38-43.
Bibliography, pp 44-46.
Doc. call no.: M-U 32983 W555e


Drew, Dennis M. Two Decades in the Air Power Wilderness--Do We Know Where We Are? Air University Review 37:2-13 September-October 1986.
"The 1964 version of basic doctrine, the doctrine with which the Air Force would enter the Vietnam War, paid only lip service to anything more than general war or tactical nuclear warfare. Very little had changed since 1961," pp 5-11.
Notes, p 13.
Also available online at:

Frisbee, John and Ulsamer, Edgar. The Air War in Vietnam. Air Force Magazine 55:48-71 September 1972.
In the lead-off report Frisbee gives an overview of the invasion, allied reaction, and the tactical situation as it stood at the end of July. Ulsamer's detailed description of USAF's across-the-board response to the invasion begins on p 60."

Ginsburgh, Robert N.  Strategy and Airpower: The Lessons of Southeast Asia. Strategic Review 1:18-24 Summer 1973.
Effective Use of Airpower, pp 21-24.
Notes, p 24.

Guilmartin, John F., Jr. Bombing the Ho Chi Minh Trail: A Preliminary Analysis of the Effects of Air Interdiction. Air Power History 38:3-17 Winter 1991.
"In the history of aerial warfare, few subjects have created more disagreement, debate, and controversy than air interdiction of land lines of communication to block the flow of supplies and reinforcement. The debate over the efficacy of air interdiction is active and relevant today for historians of aerial warfare, for those charged with the development of military doctrine, and in the realm of national security policy formulation. Although the focus of this paper is on the experience of United States air forces in the Indochina War, 1965-73, the relevance of the topic extends beyond the study of American strategies and their implementation in that conflict."

Hopkins, Charles K. LINEBACKER II--A Firsthand View. Aerospace Historian 23:128-135 Fall 1976.
"LINEBACKER II was a massive, concentrated, and highly coordinated air operation over North Vietnam conducted for a period of 12 days in the latter part of December 1972. The heart of the operation was the role played by Strategic Air Command's (SAC) B-52 bombers. That this was necessarily so from the nature of the objectives in no way deprecates nor detracts from the importance of the missions flown by the many tactical aircraft involved in the operation under the control of Pacific Air Forces (PACAF) and the Navy."
References, p 135.

LeMay, Curtis E.  'Aerospace Power Is Indivisible.' Air Force and Space Digest 44:62+ November 1961.
"We must keep firmly in mind the fact that aerospace power is indivisible. This is stated in our basic doctrine. This basic doctrine hasn't changed over the years, not because our doctrine has become dogma, but because this principle has stood the test of time and experience."
"...we need to restate firmly that the United States Air Force is an entity whose elements all contribute to the aerospace power that is vital for our defense."

Leonard, Raymond W. Learning from History: Linebacker II and U.S. Air Force Doctrine. Journal of Military History 58:267-303 April 1994.
"This analysis will ... consider how members of what we may call the Air Force 'doctrinal community' have interpreted the bombing, and how these interpretations have influenced their overall concept of air power doctrine."
"The conclusions derived from the research presented here is that a consensus Air Force interpretation of Linebacker II, stressing both its great success and its apparent validation of traditional Air Force doctrine, emerged almost immediately after the bombing. The consensus itself was based on a rather small handful of thin arguments and debatable evidence, most of which appeared in the literature in one form or another within a few years of the bombing. This consensus interpretation, rather than critical historical analysis, dominated the Air Force discussion of that air campaign until the late 1980s, when for a variety of reasons a much more critical interpretation began to appear."
Extensive notes throughout article.
Also available online at:

Moorer, Thomas H.  What Admiral Moorer Really Said About Airpower's Effectiveness in SEA. Air Force Magazine 56:24-25 November 1973.
"I am convinced that Linebacker II served as a catalyst for the negotiations which resulted in the cease-fire, the return of our POWs, and the complete withdrawal of our forces from Vietnam. Airpower, given its day in court after almost a decade of frustration, confirmed its effectiveness as an instrument of national power--in just nine and a half flying days."

Nalty, Bernard C. An Uncommon War: The US Air Force in Southeast Asia. Air Power History 41:27-37 Fall 1994.
"This essay addresses the USAF Southeast Asia Monograph Series dealing with air operations against North Vietnam, resistance to the North Vietnamese invasion of the South in 1972, and the evacuation of Saigon in 1975. Instead of concentrating on the experiences of individuals, the author searches for larger themes underlying the combat activity that the monographs describe."

Pape, Robert A., Jr. Coercive Air Power in the Vietnam War. International Security 15:103-146 Fall 1990.
"This article, first, outlines a theory of coercion that identifies the conditions under which coercive attacks are likely to be effective. Second, it compares this new theory's predictions with the failures and successes of different American air offensives against North Vietnam."
Giulio Douhet, p 115.
The Douhet Model, p 129.
Also available online at:

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