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The Wilson Government and the Davies Peace Mission to North Vietnam, July 1965

John W. Young
Review of International Studies
Vol. 24, No. 4 (Oct., 1998), pp. 545-562
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/20097550
Page Count: 18
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
The Wilson Government and the Davies Peace Mission to North Vietnam, July 1965
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Abstract

The British Labour government under Harold Wilson was involved in several attempts to negotiate an early end to the Vietnam War. Such efforts helped to satisfy critics of the war on the Labour left and in the Commonwealth, to neutralize US pressure to join in the conflict and to emphasize Britain's importance on the world stage. The Davies mission, in which a left-leaning junior minister was sent to Hanoi, was Wilson's most unusual peace bid which ended as a much-criticized fiasco. This story helps to illuminate Wilson's approach to foreign policy-making, the difficulty of pursuing talks without normal diplomatic relations and the obstacles preventing a Vietnam settlement in 1965. The reluctance of both Washington and Hanoi, as well as flaws in the mission's execution, condemned it to failure.

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