Vietnam War Bibliography:

Morale, Discipline, and Military Justice

William T. Allison, Military Justice in Vietnam: The Rule of Law in an American War. Lawrence: University Press of Kansas, 2007. xiv, 230 pp.

The Army Lawyer. Published by the Judge Advocate General's School, Charlottesville, Virginia, beginning in August 1971. All issues are available online through the Library of Congress.

Bey DR, Zecchinelli VA. "Marijuana as a coping device in Vietnam." Military Medicine 1971;136(5):448–450.

Thomas C. Bond, "Fragging: A Study," Army. 24:4 (April 1977), pp. 45-47. A study of a sample of 28 prisoners at Ft. Leavenworth who had been convicted by court-martial of fragging. Bond reports that 87.5% reported having been intoxicated on alcohol and/or drugs at the time of the incident, and that two-thirds reported having made no effort to avoid being caught. I would note that the figure is mathematically impossible (there is no number of men that would represent 87.5% of a sample of 28) and that the sample surely would not be representative of the overall population of fraggers (the perpetrators who did make an effort to avoid being caught, who I believe constituted a majority, were unlikely to end up in Ft. Leavenworth). This article had previously been published in the American Journal of Psychiatry, Vol. 133 (1973), starting on p. 1328. I believe that version probably either is more complete than the one in Army, or has some reference to a location where a more complete version has been published.

Frederic L. Borch, Judge Advocates in Combat: Army Lawyers in Military Operations from Vietnam to Haiti. Washington: Office of the Judge Advocate General and Center of Military History, 2001. xix, 413 pp. Chapter 1, "Vietnam," is pp. 3-57.

Frederic L. Borch III, Vietnam: Army Lawyers in Southeast Asia, 1959-1975. Fort Leavenworth, Kansas: U.S. Army Command and General Staff College Press, 2003. x, 159 pp.

Richard Boyle, Flower of the Dragon: The Breakdown of the U.S. Army in Vietnam. Foreword by Rep. Paul N. McCloskey. San Francisco: Ramparts Press, 1972. 282 pp.

"Cincinnatus" (Cecil B. Currey), Self-Destruction: The Disintegration and Decay of the United States Army During the Vietnam Era. New York: Norton, 1981. 288 pp. The way the author, Cecil B. Currey, claimed to have had closer contact with the problems he was discussing that was actually the case, when he published this book under a pseudonym, has tended to discredit it.

Cecil Barr Currey, Long Binh Jail: An Oral History of Vietnam's Notorious U.S. Military Prison.  Washington: Brassey's, 1999.  xix, 192 pp.

Jack Crouchet, Vietnam Stories: A Judge's Memoir. Niwot: University Press of Colorado, 1997. xv, 261 pp. Crouchet was a US Army judge in Vietnam, July 1968-July 1969. Some of the cases in the book are composites and some names have been changed, but Crouchet consulted extensive records while writing the book, in order to insure that matters not deliberately being altered would be accurate.

General Accounting Office reports on drug abuse.

Major LeRoy F. Foreman, "Religion, Conscience and Military Discipline," Military Law Review, Vol. 52 (January 1971), pp. 77-101.

Richard Franks, FLC Legal: The War in Vietnam That Was Never Reported. Austin Macauley, 2018. 299 pp. Marine officers in Danang prosecuting and defending in court-martial cases, 1969-70.

Goodwin DW, Davis DH, Robins LN. "Drinking amid abundant illicit drugs: The Vietnam Case." Archives of General Psycyiatry, 1975;32(2):230–233.

Herbert Green, "Interview with Herbert Green." Oral history interview, conducted by Stephen Maxner, May 9, 2000. 42 pp. Green went into the Judge Advocate General (JAG) Corps, as an officer, in order to avoid being drafted. He was assigned to Fort Sam Houston in Texas; he has interesting comments around p. 8 on the legal problems involving in-service conscientious objectors there. Late in 1967 he volunteered to go to Vietnam, which he and those around him all still thought of as a "good war." Went in January 1968, worked for IIFF. The text is copyright by, and has been placed on-line in the Virtual Vietnam Archive of, the Vietnam Project at Texas Tech University.

Col. Robert D. Heinl, Jr., "The Collapse of the Armed Forces." Armed Forces Journal, June 7, 1971. Heinl, a Marine and a military historian, described the collapse of discipline in the Army in rather strong terms, but said things were not that bad in the Marine Corps. The text is available online at a Montclair State University web site.

Don W. Griffis, Eagle Days: A Marine Legal/Infantry Officer in Vietnam. Tuscaloosa: University of Alabama Press, 2007. xiv, 174 pp. Griffis, a Marine lawyer, arrived in Vietnamm June 1968, assigned to the legal office of Force Logistics Command, in the Danang area. But he quickly took on a second job as commander of the Provisional Rifle Company, an infantry unit made up of Marines who like Griffis had other jobs, but who served part-time as combat infantry, strengthening local security. Served until June 1969.

Charles Henderson, Jungle Rules: A True Story of Marine Justice in Vietnam. New York: Berkley Caliber (Penguin), 2006. xii, 479 pp. Centers on a legal case that occurred in the period 1967-1968. A black Marine, subject to racial harrassment, killed one of his white tormenters. Henderson says that although names and backgrounds of individuals have been changed, the events in the book are true, based on investigation records, court transcripts, and his conversations with a Marine Captain who was assigned to the Office of the Staff Judge Advocate, First Marine Aircraft Wing, Danang, at the time of the events. There is a pretty good subject index. But the sources Henderson cites could not have given him a lot of the details in this book, including many conversations. Those have to have been invented, so I would classifiy this as semi-fiction.

Lt. Col. John J. Hodge, USA, "Drug Knowledge and Attitudes in the Army" Military Review, June 1972 (vol. LII, no. 6), pp. 85-93.

Ingraham LH. "'The Nam' and 'the world': Heroin use by U.S. Army enlisted men serving in Vietnam." Psychiatry, 1974; 37(2):114–128.

LTC Edward L. King, The Death of the Army: A Pre-mortem. New York: Saturday Review Press, 1972. vii, 246 pp.

Jeremy Kuzmarov, "The myth of the 'addicted army': drug use in Vietnam in historical perspective." War & Society 27 (October 2007), pp. 121–141.

Jeremy Kuzmarov, The Myth of the Addicted Army: Vietnam and the Modern War on Drugs. University of Massachusetts Press, 2009.

Lt. Gen. Stanley R. Larsen, oral history interviews conducted in 1976. A 285-page .pdf file, made up of multiple sections paginated separately. Larsen's tour in Vietnam, which began in August 1965, is in the fifth section, beginning on the 123d page of the overall .pdf file. Larsen arrived in Vietnam August 1, 1965, and was made commander of Task Force Alpha, a command for the Army forces in II and III Corps. This evolved into I Field Force, controlling only II Corps. Larsen was there until August 1, 1967. He also has some comments on morale and discipline issues in the Army (not limited to Vietnam) later on.

George Lepre, Fragging: Why U.S. Soldiers Assaulted Their Officers in Vietnam. Lubbock: Texas Tech University Press, 2011. xiv, 318 pp.

Brigadier General Theodore C. Mataxis, USA, "This Far, No Farther: How Army Handles Dissenters in Uniform" Military Review, March 1970, pp. 74-82.

Military Law Review. Published by the Judge Advocate General's School, Charlottesville, Virginia, beginning in September 1958. All issues are available online through the Library of Congress. This is a law journal, so the articles discuss what the law is (don't expect articles discussing what life and day-to-day work are like for Army lawyers in Vietnam). A sample:

The Court-Martial of Corporal Nutting: A Memoir of the Vietnam War. Skyhorse, 2014. 208 pp. Nutting arrived in Vietnam late in 1966. He served initially in F Company, 2/3 Marines, later became a scout-sniper. He was court-martialed for possession of marijuana.

Major General Wilton B. Persons, vol. I, oral history interviews conducted in 1985. pp. i-vi, 1-216. Persons, a graduate of the USMA and of Harvard Law School, was staff judge advocate at USARV June 1969 to June 1970. Discussion of his Vietnam tour begins on p. 153. The famous Green Beret murder case was beginning right when he arrived, and took a lot of his attention (there is also some discussion of this case in vol. II, below).

Major General Wilton B. Persons, vol. II, oral history interviews conducted in 1985. pp. 217-417. Persons was staff judge advocate at USARV June 1969 to June 1970, and at USARPAC July 1970 to June 1971; then he went to Europe. Discussion of his Vietnam tour end on p. 267.

Major General Wilton B. Persons, vol. III, oral history interviews conducted in 1985. pp. i-v, 418-606, appendices A-K. Persons was in Europe 1971-75, and was Judge Advocate General July 1975 to July 1979. Vol. III has quite a bit that is indirectly related to Vietnam, such as drug problems in the Army in Europe in the 1970s.

Maj. Gen. George S. Prugh, Law at War: Vietnam, 1964-1973. Washington: Department of the Army & GPO, 1975. xi, 161 pp.

Colonel Robert B. Rigg, USA, Ret., "Future Military Discipline" Military Review, September 1970, pp. 15-23

Robins LN, Helzer JE, Davis DH. "Narcotic use in Southeast Asia and afterward: An interview study of 898 Vietnam returnees." Archives of General Psychiatry. 1975;32(8):955–961.

William J. Shkurti, Soldiering On in a Dying War: The True Story of the Firebase Pace Incidents and the Vietnam Drawdown. Lawrence: University Press of Kansas, 2011. xiv, 339 pp. At Firebase Pace, a besieged American position near the Cambodian border in Tay Ninh province, there were incidents of combat refusal in October 1971. Later that month, the firebase was abandoned, hastily enough that artillery pieces were left behind. These incidents were heavily publicized at the time.

Gary E. Skogen, Not All Heroes: An Unapologetic Memoir of the Vietnam War, 1971–1972. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 2013. 258 pp. Skogen was a CID investigator based at Chu Lai, trying to crack down on drug use.

Matthew J. Swanson, "Managing the Second Front: MACV's Response to Drug Abuse, 1965–1973." M.A. thesis, University of Nebraska at Lincoln, 2002. viii, 100 pp. The full text is available online through STINET.


Numerous congressional committee hearings on drug abuse among U.S. military personnel can be found in Drugs and the Drug Trade

Military Legal Resources. A substantial collection of material that has been placed online by the Library of Congress.

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Copyright © 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2014, 2023, Edwin E. Moise. This document may be reproduced only by permission. Revised April 27, 2023.