Originally published in 1961, before the United States escalated its involvement in South Vietnam, Street without Joy offered a clear warning about what American forces would face in the jungles of Southeast Asia: a costly and protracted revolutionary war fought without fronts against a mobile enemy. In harrowing detail, Fall describes the brutality and frustrations of the Indochina War, the savage eight-year conflict-ending in 1954 after the fall of Dien Bien Phu-in which French forces suffered a staggering defeat at the hands of Communist-led Vietnamese nationalists. With its frontline perspective, vivid reporting, and careful analysis, Street without Joy was required reading for policymakers in Washington and GIs in the field and is now considered a classic.
Bernard B. Fall was born in France and fought with the French Resistance during World War II. While traveling in Vietnam in 1967, he was killed by a Vietcong explosive. His other works include Hell in a Very Small Place (0-306-81157-X) and Last Reflections on a War (0-8117-0904-3).