British involvement in Vietnam peace initiatives, 1966-1967 : marigolds, sunflowers and 'Kosygin Week'

John Dumbrell, Sylvia Ellis

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35 Citations (Scopus)


This article is the first detailed examination of a famous British peace initiative that proved to be a major incident in the history of Anglo-American relations in the 1960s and the Vietnam War peace negotiations. The article traces the evolution of the Harold Wilson-Andrei Kosygin peace initiative of February 1967 and situates it within a plethora of secret, third-party involvement in trying to find an end to the war. It also places the initiative within an increasingly strained Anglo-American relationship, and places some of the blame for its failure on the distrustful and tense working relationship between President Johnson and Prime Minister Wilson. The article was placed in the most appropriate international journal in the field and was written jointly after the authors discovered a mutual research interest. Both authors contributed to the writing of the article, making use of archival research that each had conducted in Britain and the US. Although both authors were familiar with key materials and had given papers on the subject, a collaborative partnership was desirable as a means of finding additional supporting evidence. The article subsequently received discussion on H-NET. Ellis’ reputation as the leading scholar on Anglo-American relations and the Vietnam War, has led to numerous funded invitations to speak on the topic, notably at the Colloquium on Anglo-American Relations and the Vietnam War, held at the University of Nottingham, March 2007. Her work in this area has also led to an invitation to work in collaboration with Professor Tony Edmonds, Distinguished Professor in History at Ball State University, on British public reaction to the war in Vietnam, and to a recent British Academy small grant to work on Harold Wilson’s private papers held in the Bodleian Library, Oxford.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)113-149
JournalDiplomatic History
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2003


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