The Best and the Brightest Test | Final Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. What does Halberstam say was the beginning of the 'credibility gap'?

2. What does Halberstam say conditions were like in South Vietnam by the end of 1964?

3. When does Halberstam say the President's thinking about bombing began to change?

4. What does Halberstam say General Westmoreland was projecting after 1965?

5. What did the report that came out of the fact-finding trip to Vietnam in early 1965 ultimately advocate?

Short Essay Questions

1. What were the alternatives the staff in Vietnam laid out for Maxwell Taylor when he visited Vietnam in the fall of 1964?

2. What was Rolling Thunder and what was its purpose?

3. What does Halberstam say Maxwell Taylor said were the three issues confronting the U.S. in its Vietnam planning?

4. What were the questions people were asking on the issue of bombing the North?

5. What does Halberstam say happened when Westmoreland assumed control?

6. Who was interested in overthrowing Diem?

7. What was the result of the Spring Offensive?

8. What was the intelligence community's assessment of Rolling Thunder?

9. What happened to Diem and Nhu during the coup?

10. What did the Johnson administration tell America as it committed more troops to Vietnam?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

John F. Kennedy and Barack Obama share certain similarities, insofar as they were both young and charismatic leaders with relatively little experience, but represented a new way of doing things. Compare and contrast the early political careers and elections of these two presidents. How were they temperamentally similar? How did they relate to the old guard? How were their ascensions different?

Essay Topic 2

Using evidence from Halberstam's text, describe how the Vietnam War affected America's relationship with the community of nations--particularly China and Russia, its Communist foes. What did the Vietnam war do for American interests abroad? How did it affect America's reputation and image?

Essay Topic 3

What lessons did the U.S. learn from the Bay of Pigs invasion, and how were these lessons visible in the planning for military campaigns in Vietnam? Did the Bay of Pigs invasion sour the U.S. war planners on relying on local forces? Did it foster the argument for bombing instead of troops on the ground?

(see the answer keys)

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