AS SEEN IN:
"A Bright Shining Lie"
AS PLAYED BY:
John Paul Vann (July 2, 1924 – June 9, 1972) was a Lieutenant Colonel in the United States Army, later retired, who became well-known for his role in the Vietnam War [as a whistleblower and the first civilian commander of US troops].
Journalist Neil Sheehan wrote a Pulitzer Prize-winning Vietnam history and biography of Vann, A Bright Shining Lie: John Paul Vann and America in Vietnam. In this book, Sheehan examines Vann's alleged career-stunting incident involving a morals charge during his service in West Germany, and how this possibly affected Vann's future actions and resulting career path in Vietnam. In 1998, HBO made a film (IMDB link) adapted from the book, with Bill Paxton playing the role of Vann.
For more, go to Wikipedia's entry.