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

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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. What was the logic behind the U.S.'s actions after the 1961 fact-finding mission?
(a) Inaction would allow trade to develop.
(b) Wait for the Vietnamese elections.
(c) A show of force would intimidate the Vietcong.
(d) Further delay would defuse the situation.

2. What does Halberstam say was the result of the Thanksgiving Day Massacre?
(a) Averell Harriman was named Assistant Secretary of State for Far Eastern Affairs.
(b) Troops were withdrawn from the Mekong Delta.
(c) Kennedy increased the number of troops in Vietnam.
(d) Maxwell Taylor was removed from his position.

3. What were Diem and Nhu's politics relative to the Vietnamese population's politics?
(a) Diem and Nhu favored market capitalism more than the people did.
(b) Diem and Nhu relied on the military to enforce their political will.
(c) Diem and Nhu were more monarchical than Vietnamese typically were.
(d) Diem and Nhu were more communist than the people.

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

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

Short Answer Questions

1. What does Halberstam say happened that strained the relationship between Diem and the Buddhists?

2. What does Halberstam say Americans were united about in the early 1960s?

3. Which of these was NOT a point of disagreement between the White House and the military, in Halberstam's account?

4. Why didn't Kennedy formulate a China policy, in Halberstam's account?

5. What policy did Rostow support in Vietnam?

Short Essay Questions

1. How did the fall of China and the Cold War affect the Kennedy administration?

2. What does Halberstam say was Robert McNamara's background before becoming Secretary of Defense?

3. What did Lovett and Kennedy discuss during their meeting?

4. Who was McGeorge Bundy, and what was his role in the Kennedy administration?

5. What was McNamara's stance with regard to nuclear weapons?

6. What does Halberstam say was McNamara's relationship with Kennedy?

7. Who was Frederick Nolting, and what was his role in Vietnam?

8. What did Kennedy's representatives report back after their 1961 fact-finding mission?

9. Describe U.S. engagements in Vietnam in the 1950s.

10. Why didn't the U.S. gain the loyalty of the Vietnamese peasants?

(see the answer keys)

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