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. When did the problem with the Buddhist monks begin?
(a) November 1962.
(b) April 1962.
(c) March 1961.
(d) May 1963.

2. What rule does Halberstam say Kennedy was following in trying to appoint a Secretary of State?
(a) Someone who had learned from his mistakes and had diplomatic experience.
(b) Someone who didn't look back at bad decisions, but plowed ahead.
(c) Someone who had a strong intuition.
(d) Someone who had not made many mistakes or offended too many people.

3. How long had Ho Chi Minh's communism associations been known to the U.S., in Halberstam's account?
(a) Since 1931.
(b) Since 1954.
(c) Since 1941.
(d) Since 1946.

4. When Kennedy did not authorize more troops, what does Halberstam say he told the Pentagon?
(a) To plan to redeploy combat troops.
(b) To develop an exit strategy.
(c) To prepare a larger engagement.
(d) To develop plans to expand the war to Cambodia.

5. How does Halberstam say McNamara learned about the affairs in Vietnam?
(a) By seeing for himself.
(b) By conducting academic studies.
(c) By talking to people.
(d) By reading reports.

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

7. What issue did Joseph McCarthy use to energize voters?
(a) Tax cuts.
(b) Civil rights.
(c) Arms reduction.
(d) Communism conspiracies.

8. What does Halberstam say Americans were disunited about in the early 1960s?
(a) How to go about fighting Communism.
(b) How to reduce nuclear weapons.
(c) How to balance the budget.
(d) How to establish peace.

9. What were Eleanor Roosevelt's feelings about Kennedy?
(a) She admired his leadership.
(b) She resented his inexperience.
(c) She distrusted his Catholicism.
(d) She did not entirely trust him.

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

11. Why did the Americans back down on demands for reform in Vietnam in 1962, in Halberstam's account?
(a) Reforms had already been accomplished.
(b) They lost confidence that reforms could be implemented.
(c) Diem had begun to renege on his promises.
(d) Diem could not afford reforms.

12. Why hadn't Roosevelt stopped the French from returning to Indochina after the war, in Halberstam's account?
(a) There was no post-war plan to prevent them.
(b) He could not get a censure from the United Nations.
(c) He did not have the authority to.
(d) He needed France for its support of American monetary policy.

13. 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.

14. When did Kennedy become well known in Washington?
(a) During the Cuban Missile Crisis.
(b) When he first entered politics.
(c) In his race for Senate.
(d) In the 1960 campaign.

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

Short Answer Questions

1. What was the logic behind the U.S.'s actions after the 1961 fact-finding mission?

2. What had McNamara done by the time he took over as Secretary of Defense?

3. What kind of reports does Halberstam say would come from the head of the U.S. command after his 1962 appointment?

4. What position had Robert Lovett been appointed to in 1947?

5. How does Halberstam say Lyndon Johnson felt in the Kennedy administration?

(see the answer keys)

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