Date of Award


Degree Type

Master's Essay - Restricted

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)




Charles de Gaulle's critical reaction to American involvement and escalation in Vietnam War from 1963 to 1968 was often regarded by many observers as routine Gaullist anti-Americanism. This observation, however, would not be sufficient to understand the strategic aspect or the Gaullist foreign policy. A more analytic and dispassionate assessment reveals that de Gaulle's critique o! American policy on Vietnam served his overall critique of the present international system. As Edward A. Kolodziej indicates, Gaullist France challenged, successfully or not, the comfortable assumption that the super powers could assure peace, respond sensitively to the security needs of other states, and accommodate meaningfully perceived interests of lesser powers. As a result, throughout the mid-l960's, de Gaulle collided with Americans over almost every issues presented between the two nations, the military organization o! the Atlantic Alliance, the scope and methods o! European unity, the control of nuclear weapons, strategic arms control negotiations, policy in the Far East and Middle East, the international monetary system, and so forth. In this circumstance, his Vietnam policy was not an exception. As a matter or fact, Vietnam was an ideal battlefield for the General to challenge the present bi-polar system of international politics on which every Gaullist critique was focused.