There Was a Time

George H. Wittman

The uniques skills of John Guthrie are required for a dangerous mission - being dropped into North Vietnam to work with the Viet Minh against the Japanese.
Publication date:
December 2021
Publisher :
Casemate Publishers
Format Available     Quantity Price
ISBN : 9781636240442

Dimensions : 228 X 152 mm
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• New fiction title from Casemate
• A new insight into the little-known story of the alliance between the OSS and Viet Minh at the end of World War II
• Written by an intelligence veteran and based on the actual events and exploits of various OSS officers and enlisted men

It is the summer of 1945, the last and very dangerous days of World War II. The Office of Strategic Services is in close, cooperative contact with Ho Chi Minh and the fighting cadre of the Viet Minh, working against the Japanese. In the closing months of the war, the OSS parachute a team of special operations soldiers into Tonkin, northern Viet Nam.

Led by Major John Guthrie and his second-in-command, Captain Edouard Parnell, both experienced officers from their earlier assignments in occupied France and Belgium, the team are tasked with working with Ho Chi Minh against the Japanese in the midst of various groups vying for control of Indochina. Guthrie and his team have to adapt to the entirely different context of Vietnamese politics in order to encourage communist operations against the Japanese. Guthrie in particular, struggles with both his personal and professional conflicts. The relationship that Guthrie and the rest of the OSS team develops with the Viet Minh leadership is of distinct annoyance to French ambitions to regain control of their colony, Indochina.

Based on the little-known true story of American and Viet Minh collaboration in 1945, this novel challenges the later-accepted dogma of both those supporting and those opposing the American role in the Viet Nam conflict. This novel notes how what is seen at a later time is often inadequate to understand what actually went on. Its contemporary relevance is simply a mirror of what is always the case in international affairs: today's enemies can and may be tomorrow's friends - and most importantly, the reverse is true also.


...fervid, riveting […] intrinsically intriguing…
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The atmosphere rings true as soldiers battle their own side's inertia as much as the Japanese. […] the book receives points for tackling a little-covered WWII front. Enjoyed it.
Historical Miniatures Gaming Society

Wittman took a literally novel approach to recounting this history by creating fictionalized characters reliving it. In this manner, the reader comprehends what happened through the eyes of the characters so as to better understand the complexities of the multi-national interests in Vietnam - the future of which was up for grabs in the summer of 1945.
Lt. Col. James Zumwalt

About The Author

George H. Wittman served in the US Army during and after the Korean War and, in the following decades, he became intimately involved in national security, global intelligence matters and international business. Along the way, he managed businesses, founded public service organizations, wrote prolifically. He was a veteran of forty-five years of international security operations and analysis.