Second Chance: The United States And Indochina In The 1990s

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Second Chance: The United States And Indochina In The 1990s

By Frederick Z. Brown
Council on Foreign Relations Press, 1989
163 pp. $14.95

This thoughtful and balanced volume takes the reader through the complexities of Indochinese politics since the United States pulled out of Vietnam in 1975 and provides a useful framework for a U.S. response to these developments. Brown makes a persuasive case for Washington to shed its emotional baggage and move on to normalized relations with Vietnam once the Cambodian problem is resolved. While Vietnam may not soon shed its Marxist character, what may emerge is some form of national independence away from the communist world and toward ASEAN and other noncommunist southeast Asian trading partners. This hope has indeed been borne out in the year since this book went to press. As Moscow is forced to retrench, Vietnam is increasing its economic and political relations with Thailand, Indonesia, Singapore and Japan while implementing fairly radical market reforms.

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