A Bright Shining Lie: John Paul Vann and America in Vietnam Test | Mid-Book Test - Medium

Neil Sheehan
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This test consists of 5 multiple choice questions, 5 short answer questions, and 10 short essay questions.

Multiple Choice Questions

1. John Paul Vann's frustrations with the war grow because of which of the following reasons:
(a) Media coverage of the war is deemed unfair and biased against the government in Saigon.
(b) He is merely an advisor and doesn't get to go fight anyone.
(c) He gets no real help from Huynh Van Cao or from his own commanders.
(d) The Vietcong are extremely powerful and the US is hopelessly outmatched.

2. In what city is the 7th Infantry Division (and John Paul Vann) stationed?
(a) Ap Bac.
(b) Hanoi.
(c) My Tho.
(d) Saigon.

3. Who is John Paul Vann's immediate superior?
(a) General Huynh Van Cao.
(b) General William Westmoreland.
(c) Colonel Daniel B. Porter.
(d) Lyndon Johnson.

4. To save face following the Battle of Ap Bac, General Cao does which of the following?
(a) Surrendered command to John Paul Vann.
(b) Fled to neighboring Cambodia in disgrace.
(c) Launched a massive aerial offensive against Hanoi.
(d) Staged a dangerous mock attack on the same site for PR reasons.

5. Which of the following cities is the site of the Vietnamese imperial palace?
(a) Hanoi.
(b) Hue.
(c) Saigon.
(d) My Tho.

Short Answer Questions

1. What are the two key reasons why the ARVN forces did not soundly defeat the VC at Ap Bac?

2. President John F. Kennedy proposes _______________ as a way to deal with possible peasant uprisings spurred on by the Vietcong.

3. Ho Chi Minh lived in which country (other than Vietnam) prior to the Vietnam War?

4. President Ngo Dinh Diem is made president of South Vietnam by the _______________.

5. The helicopters that carry the ARVN troops to the battle location are affectionately known by what name?

Short Essay Questions

1. In what ways does John Paul Vann interact with his superior officers during his assignment to Vietnam?

2. What are some of the reasons why the South Vietnamese people as a whole do not rally behind the Americans?

3. Why is the use of terminology in reference to Ho Chi Minh's forces important for the Americans and South Vietnamese to establish?

4. What types of people come to pay their respects to John Paul Vann in Arlington in 1972? Why do you think they are there?

5. What are the key components of Ziegler's battle plan? How many men and how much air and armor support are sent to Ap Bac?

6. Which American adviser is responsible for drawing up the basic plan of attack for the ARVN?

7. In what ways does John Paul Vann's life embody the spirit of the United States in the Vietnam War?

8. Why is the Battle of Ap Bac considered perhaps the most important confrontation of the entire Vietnam War?

9. What do you think John Paul Vann's motivations are when he is first sent to Vietnam to advise the South Vietnamese military in 1962?

10. What features of John Paul Vann's burial at Arlington stood out?

(see the answer keys)

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