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(E) Dien Bien Phu and the Lasva Valley - NEW BOOK
By Nenad N. Bach | Published  07/20/2003 | History | Unrated
(E) Dien Bien Phu and the Lasva Valley - NEW BOOK

Deconstructing War

Dear folks:

I write to draw your attention to a book that just came out, and is available from Short intro follows below.

The author is Reg Shrader, former US military officer in Vietnam, and noted military historian (see bio below). He writes about the war between Muslims and Croats. Probably the first serious work on this uneasy war-within-a-war subject. Schrader studied military formations, intelligence activity, and other issues and came to some very contrarian conclusions.

Shrader compares the situation of the Croat community in central Bosnia to that of the French army units at Dien Bien Phu in 1954. The French camps in the valley of the Nam Yum River were surrounded by the Viet Minh who greatly outnumbered them, and who held the high ground all around the valley (50,000 Viet Minh to 15,000 French Union troops). Naturally, the Viet Minh successfully besieged and overran the French who were unable to clear the Viet Minh from the high ground in order to keep open their lines of communications in the Dien Bien Phu area.

At the time when some popular myths about the Balkan war activities are beginning to unravel (Galbraith/Storm), the myth about the Muslim-Croat war could be the next to be deconstructed .....

Please give it a look.

Sincerely, Miles

Jacket Copy for Charles R. Shrader, The Muslim-Croat Civil War in Central Bosnia, 1992–1994

In The Muslim-Croat Civil War in Central Bosnia, Charles R. Shrader offers the first full-scale military history of a crucial conflict in Bosnia between two former allies. When the Bosnian Serbs and their Serbian allies attacked Bosnia-Herzegovina in March, 1992, the Bosnian Croats and Muslims collaborated to defend themselves. As Serbian pressure increased and it became clear that the West would not intervene, the two allies began to stake out their own claims.
Drawing on testimony and exhibits from cases presented before the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia, Shrader describes the organization and tactical doctrine of the Croatian Defense Forces and the Muslim-led Army of Bosnia-Herzegovina. He analyzes the strengths and weaknesses of the two sides in such fields as communications, training, and logistics. He assesses not only the problems of command and control in the newly formed armies, but also the impact of criminal activity, the mujahedeen, and the intervention of peacekeeping forces.
What looked to many like aggression by the Bosnian Croats, Shrader views as the adoption of an “active defense,” a doctrine embraced by U. S. forces, against a predatory Muslim force. He believes UN and European observes rushed to judgment regarding the aggressive intent of the Croatian command. Far from being the attackers, Shrader concludes, the Bosnian Croats in Central Bosnia were clearly outnumbered, outgunned, and on the defensive. Surrounded by superior Muslim forces, they barely held out in their enclaves in the Lasva Valley until a cease-fire was achieved in February 1994.
Although Shrader’s work is a detailed, meticulous analysis by a neutral expert, not everyone will find his conclusions comfortable. But every serious student of the conflict in Bosnia will have to take his history into account. Enhanced by maps, useful appendices, and a glossary, this should become the standard work on military operations in Central Bosnia and a useful case study of internal warfare and ethnic conflict.
Charles R. Shrader began research for this book while serving as a military consultant on a case before the war crimes tribunal at The Hague and continued his research with field studies of the battle sites.


Dr. Charles R. Shrader retired from the United States Army in 1987 as a Lieutenant Colonel after 23 years service as an Infantry and Transportation Corps officer. He is now an independent historical writer and consultant. Named a Fellow of the Association of the United States Army Institute of Land Warfare in 1999, he has served as the Executive Director of the Society for Military History (1992–2000) and as the President of the National Coalition of Independent Scholars (2000–2002).
Dr. Shrader earned the BA degree in History (cum laude with “High Honors in History”) from Vanderbilt University in 1964, and was elected to Phi Beta Kappa in 1965. He was awarded a doctorate in Medieval History from Columbia University in 1976. He is also a graduate of the US Army Command and General Staff College (1978), the US Army War College (1982), and the NATO Defense College (1984).
Dr. Shrader was commissioned and entered the Army from ROTC in 1964. His assignments as an Infantry platoon leader and battalion operations officer at Fort Carson, Colorado, were followed by two tours with Transportation units in Viet Nam. He later served as a liaison officer between major logistical headquarters and as a truck battalion executive officer in Germany.
For over 17 years Dr. Shrader was active in the study and teaching of history and the administration of historical programs within the Army. He served as an Assistant Professor of History at the United States Military Academy and as a history instructor at the US Army Command and General Staff College. He was the first acting Director of the Combat Studies Institute at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, and later served as Chief of the Oral History Branch of the US Army Military History Institute at Carlisle Barracks, Pennsylvania, where he also held the “General of the Army George C. Marshall Chair of Military Studies” at the US Army War College. He subsequently served as the curriculum director of the NATO Defense College in Rome, and at the time of his retirement from active duty he was Chief, Historical Services Division, US Army Center of Military History, in Washington.
Dr. Shrader has published several articles on medieval history and manuscript studies as well as on topics in American military history. He is the author of Amicicide: The Problem of Friendly Fire in Modern War and of an essay on “Field Logistics in the Civil War” in The US Army War College Guide to the Battle of Antietam (ed. Jay Luvaas and Harold W. Nelson). He also contributed an essay on British-American logistical cooperation in World War I to The Great War, 1914–18: Essays on the Military, Political and Social History of the First World War (ed. R. J. Q. Adams) and several articles to the Dictionary of American Military Biography (ed. Roger J. Spiller and Joseph G. Dawson). He is also the author of U. S. Military Logistics, 1607–1991: A Research Guide (Greenwood Press, 1992), and Communist Logistics in the Korean War (Greenwood Press, 1995). He is the General Editor of a five-volume Reference Guide to United States Military History (Facts-on-File, 1991–1994) and the Editor of the three–volume anthology, United States Army Logistics, 1775–1992 (Center of Military History, United States Army, 1997). Dr. Shrader’s recent works include The First Helicopter War, a study of logistics in the Algerian War of 1954–1962 (Praeger, 1999); The Withered Vine, a study of the logistical support of the Communist insurgency in Greece, 1945–1949 (Praeger, 1999); and The Muslim-Croat Civil War in Central Bosnia, 1992–1994—A Military History (Texas A&M University Press, 2003). He has also written a two-volume study of French and Viet Minh logistics in the First Indochina War, 1945–1954, and a study of the sale of armaments by the Soviet Bloc and the West to Indonesia, 1950–1970. He is currently working on a study of operations research in the U. S. Army and a book on the Regular Army of the United States in the Civil War.

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