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The State of Things

Viet Nam's Haunting Legacy

Haunting Legacy: Viet Nam and the American Presidency from Ford to Obama

George W. Bush and Bill Clinton were born in the same year and came of age during the Viet Nam War. They took different roads to avoid fighting in the conflict, but that didn't hurt their presidential campaigns or their ability to lead. Every U.S. president since Nixon has been affected by the American involvement in Viet Nam. Legendary journalist Marvin Kalb and his daughter, Deborah Kalb, examine the relationship between the war and the American presidency in their new book, "Haunting Legacy: Viet Nam and the American Presidency from Ford to Obama" (Brookings Institution Press/2011). The Kalbs join host Frank Stasio to discuss why the legacy of the Viet Nam War endures and what it means for the current war in Afghanistan.

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