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The Burns-Novick Vietnam War Film: A Different Perspective

Mon, Jan 22, 2018, 4:00pm - 5:30pm


You are cordially invited to a panel on the topic of
The Burns-Novick Vietnam War Film: A Different Perspective
Dr. Lewis Sorley, Prof. Robert F. Turner, Dr. Mark Moyar

Monday, January 22
4:00 – 5:30 PM

Institute of World Politics
1521 16th Street Northwest
Washington, DC 20036




About the Panel: 

This panel will address the legal issue related to and the military developments specifically after 1968, on the Vietman War. It will include an alternative perspective to the war than the one presented by the Burns-Novick Vietnam War Film. 

About the Speakers:

Dr. Lewis Sorley, a former soldier, is a graduate of West Point and holds a Ph.D. from Johns Hopkins University. His Army service included tank and armored cavalry units in Germany, Vietnam, and the U.S., Pentagon staff duty, and teaching at the United States Military Academy and the Army War College. Lewis Sorley’s books include the three biographies Thunderbolt: General Creighton Abrams and the Army of His TimesHonorable Warrior: General Harold K. Johnson and the Ethics of Command; and Westmoreland: The General Who Lost Vietnam. His biography of Johnson received the Army Historical Foundation’s Distinguished Book Award. An excerpt of Thunderbolt won the Peterson Prize as the year’s best scholarly article on military history. Westmoreland received the Army Historical Foundation’s Distinguished Writing Award. He has also been awarded the General Andrew Goodpaster Prize for military scholarship by the American Veterans Center. His book A Better War: The Unexamined Victories and Final Tragedy of America’s Last Years in Vietnam was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize. His edited work Vietnam Chronicles: The Abrams Tapes, 1968-1972 received the Army Historical Foundation’s Trefry Prize for providing a unique perspective on the art of command. A second edited book, The Vietnam War: An Assessment by South Vietnam’s Generals, provides the under-represented South Vietnamese view on the war. He has also written Honor Bright: History and Origins of the West Point Honor Code and System and edited a two-volume work entitled Press On!: Selected Works of General Donn A. Starry.

Prof. Robert F. Turner holds both professional and academic doctorates from the University of Virginia School of Law, where in 1981 he cofounded the Center for National Security Law and continues to serve at the Center as a Distinguished Fellow. Between 1965 and 1968 he served as Director of Research for the National Student Committee for Victory in Vietnam and took part in more than 100 programs (debates, teach-ins, panels, etc.) on the war, including debates against key SDS leaders and other war opponents. He wrote a 450-page undergraduate honors thesis on the war (1966-67). Upon graduation, he was commissioned as an Army lieutenant through ROTC, turned down a law school deferment, and volunteered for duty in Vietnam. He worked briefly in Vietnam as a civilian journalist in 1968 and then served two Army tours with MACV on detail to the North Vietnamese/Viet Cong Affairs Division of a branch of the U.S. Embassy. After leaving the Army as a Captain in 1971, he became a Research Associate and then Public Affairs Fellow at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution on War, Revolution, and Peace, where he served as Asia & Pacific editor of the Yearbook on International Communist Affairs and authored the first major English-language history of Vietnamese Communism. Dr. Turner has taught seminars on the war at the University of Virginia for more than 25 years.

Dr. Mark Moyar is the Director of the Project on Military and Diplomatic History at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, DC. The author of six books and dozens of articles, he has worked in and out of government on national security affairs, international development, foreign aid, and capacity building. He holds a B.A. summa cum laude from Harvard and a Ph.D. from Cambridge. Dr. Moyar’s newest book is “Oppose Any Foe: The Rise of America’s Special Operations Forces” (Basic Books, 2017). The first comprehensive history of America’s special operations forces, the book builds upon research he conducted while working at US Special Operations Command. In his book “Aid for Elites: Building Partners and Ending Poverty with Human Capital “(Cambridge University Press, 2016), Dr. Moyar illuminated the nexus of international development, governance, and security, and the value of human capital in each of these sectors. Dr. Moyar is the author of two groundbreaking histories of the Vietnam War: “Triumph Forsaken: The Vietnam War, 1954-1965” (Cambridge University Press, 2006), and “Phoenix and the Birds of Prey: Counterinsurgency and Counterterrorism in Vietnam” (Naval Institute Press, 1997; Bison Books, 2007). Dr. Moyar is a member of the Hoover Institution Working Group on the Role of Military History in Contemporary Conflict. From 2004 to 2010, he served as a professor at the U.S. Marine Corps University, where he held the Kim T. Adamson Chair of Insurgency and Terrorism, and from 2013 to 2015 taught at the Joint Special Operations University. Dr. Moyar has worked as a consultant for the senior leadership of the Special Operations Joint Task Force-Afghanistan, U.S. Central Command, U.S. Special Operations Command, the International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan, and the NATO Training Mission-Afghanistan.