The Best and the Brightest Test | Mid-Book Test - Easy

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This test consists of 15 multiple choice questions and 5 short answer questions.

Multiple Choice Questions

1. Who was named to head the U.S. command in Saigon in January 1962?
(a) Robert McNamara.
(b) Maxwell Taylor.
(c) Chester Bowles.
(d) Paul Harkins.

2. What does Halberstam say McNamara learned that he had to do in order to argue against nuclear weapons?
(a) Make a good argument for conventional weapons.
(b) Discredit military analysts in favor of nuclear weapons.
(c) Demonize his opponents.
(d) Make emotional appeals to the electorate.

3. What was Kennedy's relationship with the press during his presidential campaign?
(a) He had the support of most of the press.
(b) He had a number of hostile enemies in the press.
(c) He had a contentious relationship with the press.
(d) He had to quash a few stories that were critical to his campaign.

4. What does Halberstam say Kennedy had done in response to the meeting with Russians in Vienna?
(a) He reduced America's nuclear arsenal.
(b) He sent an advisory committee to Vietnam.
(c) He removed troops from Poland.
(d) He increased troop strength in Berlin.

5. What was Kennedy's position on the Cold War policies of his predecessors?
(a) He was going to continue them.
(b) He was going to end them.
(c) He did not want to follow them.
(d) He was going to improve on them.

6. Where was the war going badly, at the time when the White House was losing faith in Diem?
(a) In Pleiku.
(b) In Quang Nam.
(c) In the Mekong Delta.
(d) Around Saigon.

7. How many soldiers had the U.S. sent to Vietnam in its first commitment of troops?
(a) 20,000 troops.
(b) 100,000 troops.
(c) 400 Special forces and 3,000 troops.
(d) 8 military advisers.

8. When did Kennedy first send advisers to Vietnam?
(a) June 1963.
(b) October 1961.
(c) February 1962.
(d) May 1962.

9. What had McNamara done by the time he took over as Secretary of Defense?
(a) Studied and identified the problems at the Pentagon.
(b) Reviewed American foreign policy.
(c) Instituted successful reforms at Ford.
(d) Consulted with Kennedy about his goals and methods.

10. On which issue does Halberstam say Kennedy compromised with the military?
(a) The use of napalm.
(b) Free fire zones.
(c) Bombing in the north.
(d) The use of jets.

11. On which issue does Halberstam say the military lost its battle with the White House?
(a) The use of jets.
(b) Bombing in the north.
(c) The commitment of troops.
(d) The use of napalm.

12. Why didn't Kennedy offer the position of Secretary of State to David Bruce?
(a) Bruce was felt to be too academic.
(b) Bruce was felt to be too conservative.
(c) Bruce was felt to be too old.
(d) Bruce was felt to be too young.

13. Whom did Kennedy want to act as Secretary of State?
(a) Adlai Stevenson.
(b) He was going to act as his own Secretary of State.
(c) Chester Bowles.
(d) He was going to abolish the position of Secretary of State.

14. Whose input did the French and Americans ignore about Vietnam, in Halberstam's account?
(a) Generals.
(b) Military advisers.
(c) Diplomats.
(d) Lower-level officers.

15. What events does Halberstam say affected American perceptions of its global priorities?
(a) The escalation of the Cold War and the fall of China.
(b) The tension over civil rights in America.
(c) The agitation of labor unions in America and Europe.
(d) The revolution in Cuba.

Short Answer Questions

1. What did Chester Bowles think was the most important issue to confront?

2. What did Kennedy ask Chester Bowles for advice on?

3. What does Halberstam say was Robert McNamara's role in the White House policy discussions?

4. What committee had Kennedy served on in the Senate?

5. Who was Kennedy's military analyst on the 1961 fact-finding mission?

(see the answer keys)

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