In this book James E. Westheider explores the social and professional paradoxes facing African-American soldiers in Vietnam. Service in the military started as a demonstration of the merits of integration as blacks competed with whites on a near equal basis for the first time. Military service, especially service in Vietnam, helped shape modern black culture and fostered a sense of black solidarity in the Armed Forces. But as the war progressed, racial violence became a major problem for the Armed Forces as they failed to keep pace with the sweeping changes in civilian society. Despite the boasts of the Department of Defense, personal and institutional racism remained endemic to the system. Westheider tells this story expertly and accessibly by providing the history and background of African American participation in the U.S. Armed Forces then following all the way through to the experience of African Americans returning home from the Vietnam war.