Douglas Pike

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Douglas Eugene Pike[1] (July 27, 1924 – May 13, 2002)[2] was a leading historian[3] and foremost scholar on the Vietnam War and the Viet Cong based at Texas Tech University from 1997, was director of the Indochina Archive at the University of California, Berkeley from 1981 and prior to that served as Foreign Service Officer in Asia, with assignments in Saigon (now Ho Chi Minh City), Hong Kong, Tokyo and Taipei.[4] Pike served for 15 years as the State Department's leading analyst.[5] He was considered the leading expert on the VC and NVA before his death in 2002.[6][7]

Pike has a bachelor's degree in journalism from University of Northern Dakota and international communications from UC Berkeley, an MA from American University in Washington (1958), and did a year of graduate work at Massachusetts Institute of Technology Center for International Studies (1963–64).[8]

He was the founder of the journal Indochina Chronology which was subscribed to by academics and diplomats worldwide. He has authored numerous books and articles on the war and the VC.[6] His book PAVN: Peoples Army of Vietnam has been described as "one of the two or three most significant books to emerge from the war".[9]

Early life[edit]

Pike was born in Cass Lake, Minnesota. He grew up in Minot and had planned on a career in journalism but with the outbreak of WW2 he joined the Army Signal Corps and served in the South Pacific.[10] He served between 1943–1946 and reached the rank of Master Sergeant.[2]

The Indochina Chronology[edit]

Pike founded The Indochina Chronology in 1982 to cover both historical and contemporary events in Vietnam, Cambodia, and Laos.[11]

Published works[edit]

  • Douglas Pike, Viet Cong. The organization and techniques of the National Liberation Front of South Vietnam (Massachusetts Institute of Technology 1966)
  • Douglas Pike, War, Peace, and the Viet Cong (Massachusetts Institute of Technology 1969)
  • Douglas Pike, History of Vietnamese Communism, 1925-1976 (Hoover Institution Press 1978)
  • Douglas Pike, PAVN: People's Army of Vietnam (Presidio Press 1986)


  1. ^
  2. ^ a b "Douglas E. Pike". Lubbock Avalanche-Journal. 2002-05-15. 
  3. ^ Elaine Woo (May 17, 2002). "Douglas Pike, 77; Historian, Archivist of the Vietnam War". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 11 September 2011. 
  4. ^  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  5. ^ Chanoff, David (2000-04-30). "Flashback; Twenty-Five Years of Writing on the Vietnam War". The Washington Post. 
  6. ^ a b Martin, Douglas (2002-05-16). "Douglas Pike, Vietnam Expert, Dies at 77". New York Times. 
  7. ^ Buckley, William F. (1970-12-28). "On the right". Warsaw Times-Union. 
  8. ^ "Biographic Data: Douglas Pike". Texas Tech University. Retrieved 17 May 2014. 
  9. ^ Chanoff, David (1986-04-20). "PAVN: Peoples Army of Vietnam". LA Times. 
  10. ^ Woo, Elaine (2002-05-17). "Douglas Pike, 77; Historian, Archivist of the Vietnam War". LA Times. 
  11. ^ "The Indochina Chronology". The Vietnam Center & Archive. 

External links[edit]