Serendipity Talk: Lessons from the Vietnam War

This talk will focus on events leading to U.S. involvement in Vietnam culminating in an avoidable war with casualties over two million, including 58,000 Americans. There will be a discussion of the French colonial era, the rise of Ho Chi Minh and the Viet Minh, South Vietnamese politics, and U.S. policy decisions. There will also be a detailed examination of the conduct of the war, with an emphasis on the tactical decisions leading to heavy casualties among Americans and their communist opponents. This will be an interactive session soliciting questions and comments.

Ed Linz, a 1965 graduate of the Naval Academy, is the author of five books, including recent works on the Great Depression and the Vietnam War. During the Vietnam War he served on a nuclear attack submarine and later was Commanding Officer, USS KAMEHAMEHA (SSBN-642). He holds advanced degrees from Oxford University and George Mason University. Linz lives in Maine and Virginia. He was the recipient of a heart transplant in 1994.


No registration is required. The Zoom link will be e-mailed to all those subscribed to the OLLI newsletter the morning of the talk. If you do not receive the newsletter and would like to attend, please join the email list at