In This Review

Reading Athena's Dance Card: Men Against Fire in Vietnam
Reading Athena's Dance Card: Men Against Fire in Vietnam
By Russell W. Glenn
Naval Institute Press, 2000, 214 pp
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Combat remains mysterious as well as terrible. That is the central conclusion of this study by a thoughtful soldier-turned-analyst at the RAND Corporation. On the basis of a careful review of the literature, in addition to his own surveys of veterans from the First Cavalry Division and officers at the U.S. Army's Command and General Staff College, Glenn explores some of the central questions concerning combat in Vietnam. Did most soldiers fire their weapons in combat? What were the effects of the 12-month tour of duty for individuals and 6-month tour for commanders? The answers are familiar in some respects, but the scholarship and dispassionate analysis are impressive.