User's Guide to the Rand Interviews in Vietnam

by W. P. Davison

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An account of a four-year Rand project to interview ralliers and prisoners from VC and NVA ranks, and refugees, with an analysis of the scope and limitations of the nearly 2500 interview reports it produced. The reports, approximating 62,000 pages, are a rich source of information about NLF military life and operations, general conditions in NLF-controlled areas, and the ways of thinking of NLF partisans. The interviews are being released to permit wider analysis of their data. They are complete except for the minimal deletion of information that would have jeopardized the anonymity of the respondents, who might later be targets of reprisal. Because the interviews were conducted and reported under wartime conditions, and because the respondents were not randomly selected, the reports are highly susceptible of misinterpretation. This guide is intended to minimize misinterpretation.

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