“Fighting The Wolves At The Door”: From Advisor In Vietnam To Department Head At West Point

Robert A. Doughty


BG(R) Robert Doughty grew up in Louisiana, and graduated from West Point with the Distinguished Class of 1965. He branched Armor and, after a tour in Germany, deployed to Vietnam as an Advisor in 1968. Aside from a brief stint at Fort Leavenworth, and a tour in Germany from 1979-1981, his career revolved around education and teaching. He earned a Master’s Degree at UCLA and a PhD at the University of Kansas, and then served on the faculty at Leavenworth before returning to West Point, where he spent the remainder of his career. He retired in 2005 after 40 years on active duty, and 20 years as the head of the History Department. In this interview, he talks about his childhood and his decision to attend West Point. He describes his tour in Vietnam and provides his perspective on working with the ARVN, paying particular attention to the qualities of the Vietnamese Soldiers he worked with. He discusses his experiences with the Army History Program, his own scholarship, the West Point Department of History under the leadership of BG Thomas Griess, BG Roy Flint, and finally his tenure as the department head. He concludes by examining institutional issues at West Point.


conflicts Vietnam War
topics West Point History Writing the Soldier's Life Courage Leadership USMA 1965
interviewer BG(R) Lance Betros
date 14 March 2006


name Robert A. Doughty
institution USMA
graduation year 1965
service Armor
unit MACV; 1st Squadron 4th Armored Cavalry Regiment, 2nd ARVN Division
specialty Head, Department of History
service dates 1965 2005