Vietnam: Lotus in a Sea of Fire

[T]he war has destroyed not only human lives but all human values as well. It undermines all government structures and systems of society, destroys the very foundations of democracy, freedom, and all human systems of values. Its shame is not just the shame of the Vietnamese, but of the whole world. The whole family of humankind will share the guilt if they do not help to stop this war.

Vietnam: Lotus in a Sea of Fire is Thich Nhat Hanh’s impassioned plea to the world to consider ways to hasten the end of the Vietnam War. The book is a moderately insightful look into some important historical factors that help the reader to understand the Vietnamese mindset during the war.

I found the book hard to get into; however, the second half was strong and made up for the first half. Especially valuable was learning about the connection between Vietnamese nationalism and Buddhism. The book is valuable from a historical perspective, but not meaningfully insightful outside of that.

Book cover for Vietnam
Lotus in a Sea of Fire
Thich Nhat Hanh