Neil Sheehan, who was no supporter of the Vietnam war, wrote a devastating review of Lane’s work in the New York Times Book Review. He found that Lane had interviewed men who had never served in Vietnam and who had otherwise lied about their service. Sheehan had been in contact with two officers from Whitmore’s unit who denied Whitmore’s story.
His review had no effect. (…)
The book might well have died a quiet death, but in 1997, the University of Mississippi Press chose to reprint it and it remains on its list as “one of the finest memoirs of the Vietnam experience.” Jeff Loeb wrote a fawning afterword to the reprint. When I called Loeb and asked him had he ever doubted Whitmore’s tale, he answered “no comment.”