Even today few Americans understand the strategy, doctrine, and tactics of communist guerrilla warfare. Back in the early 1950s, the Rand Corporation conducted com· puter·simulated war games focused on Southeast Asia. The French agony in Indochina had attracted the attention of a few Rand researchers who had begun to wonder whether other wars might occur in this area and how the United States might fight if it became involved. The Rand scenarios ranged from atomic war to guerrilla conflict. WhUe a professor at the California Institute of Technology, I was asked to comment on some of these games. One thing struck me almost immediately-the communist enemy, or red forces, behaved and fought exactly like the Americans, or blue forces. From my limited knowledge of the French Indochina war, I did not think this was the case. The director of the war games, the late Dr. Edwin Paxson, agreed with my comment, but plaintively asked, "How do they behave and fight?" I offered to write a handbook for the red side, based on the Viet Minh operations against the French in Indochina. After research in Paris with the French army and air force, I duly completed my handbook in 1958, but by then it was of interest to no one. However, when John F. Kennedy became president, he stirred up great interest in Indochina and guerrilla warfare. My red team handbook, gathering dust, was quickly revised and declassified. It was published in 1961 as the first edition of this book.
Table of Contents
"PREFACE TO THE ENCORE EDITION -- PREFACE TO THE FIRST EDITION – ACKNOWLEDGMENTS -- MAP: INDOCHINA BEFORE THE TRUCE OF 1954 – INTRODUCTION -- I. VIETMINH MIUTARY DOCTRINE AND THE WAR ( Vo Ngu:yen Giap and the Formulation of Viet Doctrine The Use of Mao's Theory The Time of Self-Appraisal) -- ll. THE VIETMINH MIUTARY ORGANIZATION ( The Political Bureau The General Directorate of Supplies and Maintenance The High Command and General Staff The General Staff After 1953 The Regular Units The Regional Troops The Popular Troops Reorgankation) -- lll. PERSONNEL AND LOGISTICS ( Recruitment Training Medical Services Communications and Logistics) – IV. OPERATIONS AND TACTICS (Principles and Prerequisites Intelligence and Reconnaissance The Infantry and the Mobility Factor The Offensive Controlling the Lines of Communication The Defensive The Case of Dien Bien Phu) -- V. VIETMINH REACTIONS TO FRENCH TACTICS AND AIR POWER (Undermining the Polic:y of Pacification Putting the French on the Defensive Neutralization of Air Power) -- VI. POSTARMISTICE MILITARY DEVELOPMENTS, / by Anne M. Jonas (The Guerrillas Today Standardization and Modernization of the Regular Army Political and Economic Implications of Military Reforms The Role of the Vietminh in Laos) -- VII. CONCLUSIONS (Function and Importance of the Guerrilla Weaknesses of Revolutionary Warfare Advantages of the Revolutionaries Some Lessons for the Future) – EPILOGUE -- SELECTED BIBLIOGRAPHY."