Vietnam Helicopter Crew Member Stories Volume II: Volume II

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Capabilities Text to speech. He enjoyed a distinguished and exciting military career prior to turning his attention to education. During his career as an educator, he taught nearly twenty years, mostly at Harrisonville-Scipio Elementary School. He graduated from Scipio High School when he was sixteen years old. He traveled extensively while in the military and especially enjoyed the island nations and the people throughout the Pacific area and Southeast Asia. He had six brothers retired from the various branches of the armed forces.

Between his brothers and himself, they accumulated more than years of military service to the United States of America. Additional information Publisher Xlibris US. Content protection This content is DRM free. Additional terms Terms of transaction. Ratings and reviews No one's rated or reviewed this product yet. The circumstances of the attacks were murky. The second "attack" led to retaliatory air strikes , and prompted Congress to approve the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution on 7 August Following an attack on a U.

Operation Rolling Thunder and Operation Arc Light expanded aerial bombardment and ground support operations. It was additionally aimed at bolstering the morale of the South Vietnamese. Bombing was not restricted to North Vietnam. The ostensibly neutral Laos had become the scene of a civil war , pitting the Laotian government backed by the US against the Pathet Lao and its North Vietnamese allies.

Between and , the U. The objective of stopping North Vietnam and the Viet Cong was never reached. Following the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution, Hanoi anticipated the arrival of US troops and began expanding the Viet Cong, as well as sending increasing numbers of North Vietnamese personnel southwards. At this phase they were outfitting the Viet Cong forces and standardising their equipment with AK rifles and other supplies, as well as forming the 9th Division.

Between and the Army's strength rose from about , to nearly a million men. The war had begun to shift into the final, conventional warfare phase of Hanoi's three-stage protracted warfare model. The Viet Cong was now tasked with destroying the ARVN and capturing and holding areas; however, the Viet Cong was not yet strong enough to assault major towns and cities.

Previously, communist forces had utilised hit-and-run guerrilla tactics. At Binh Gia, however, they had defeated a strong ARVN force in a conventional battle and remained in the field for four days. On 8 March , 3, U. Marines were unilaterally dispatched to South Vietnam.

The first deployment of 3, in March was increased to nearly , by December. Regardless of political policies, U. General William Westmoreland informed Admiral U. Pacific forces, that the situation was critical. The plan was approved by Johnson and marked a profound departure from the previous administration's insistence that the government of South Vietnam was responsible for defeating the guerrillas. Westmoreland predicted victory by the end of Instead he emphasized continuity.

The opponents were locked in a cycle of escalation. The American buildup transformed the South Vietnamese economy and had a profound effect on society. South Vietnam was inundated with manufactured goods. Meanwhile, the one-year tour of duty of American soldiers deprived units of experienced leadership. As one observer noted "we were not in Vietnam for 10 years, but for one year 10 times.

Australia, New Zealand, Thailand, and the Philippines [] all agreed to send troops. South Korea would later ask to join the Many Flags program in return for economic compensation. In November , the U. However, the communist insurgents remained elusive and demonstrated great tactical flexibility. By , these operations had generated large-scale internal refugees, numbering nearly 2. This ended a series of coups that had happened more than once a year. In , Thieu became president with Ky as his deputy, after rigged elections.

Although they were nominally a civilian government, Ky was supposed to maintain real power through a behind-the-scenes military body. However, Thieu outmanoeuvred and sidelined Ky by filling the ranks with generals from his faction. Thieu was also accused of murdering Ky loyalists through contrived military accidents. Thieu, mistrustful and indecisive, remained president until , having won a one-candidate election in The Johnson administration employed a "policy of minimum candor" [] in its dealings with the media.

Military information officers sought to manage media coverage by emphasizing stories that portrayed progress in the war. Over time, this policy damaged the public trust in official pronouncements. As the media's coverage of the war and that of the Pentagon diverged, a so-called credibility gap developed. These actions were part of a diversionary strategy meant to draw US forces towards the Central Highlands. The Tet Offensive began on 30 January , as over cities were attacked by over 85, enemy troops, including assaults on key military installations, headquarters, and government buildings and offices, including the U.

During the first month of the offensive, 1, Americans and other allied troops, 2, ARVN, and 14, civilians were killed. The PAVN's own official records of their losses across all three offensives was 45, killed and , total casualties. The failure to spark a general uprising, and the fact that no units within the ARVN defected, meant both war goals of Hanoi had fallen flat at enormous costs. Prior to Tet, in November , Westmoreland had spearheaded a public relations drive for the Johnson administration to bolster flagging public support.

At one point in , Westmoreland considered the use of nuclear weapons in Vietnam in a contingency plan codenamed Fracture Jaw , which was abandoned when it became known to the White House. Negotiations stagnated for five months, until Johnson gave orders to halt the bombing of North Vietnam. At the same time, Hanoi realized it could not achieve a "total victory" and employed a strategy known as "talking while fighting, fighting while talking", in which military offensives would occur concurrently with negotiations. Johnson declined to run for re-election as his approval rating slumped from 48 to 36 percent.

Vietnam was a major political issue during the United States presidential election in The election was won by Republican party candidate Richard Nixon. President Richard Nixon began troop withdrawals in The policy became known as " Vietnamization ". Theater commander Creighton Abrams shifted to smaller operations, aimed at disrupting logistics, with better use of firepower and more cooperation with the ARVN. In September , Ho Chi Minh died at age seventy-nine. The anti-war movement was gaining strength in the United States.

Nixon appealed to the " silent majority " of Americans who he said supported the war without showing it in public. But revelations of the My Lai Massacre , in which a U. Army platoon raped and killed civilians, and the " Green Beret Affair ", where eight Special Forces soldiers, including the 5th Special Forces Group Commander, were arrested for the murder [] of a suspected double agent, [] provoked national and international outrage.

The top-secret history of U. The Supreme Court ruled that its publication was legal. Following the Tet Offensive and the decreasing support among the U. Open refusal to engage in patrols or carry out orders and disobedience began to emerge during this period, [] with one notable case of an entire company refusing orders to engage or carry out operations.

Forces was characterised by lowered morale, lack of motivation, and poor leadership. In the last years of the Army's retreat, its remaining forces were relegated to static security. The American Army's decline was readily apparent in this final stage. Racial incidents, drug abuse, combat disobedience, and crime reflected growing idleness, resentment, and frustration An entire American army was sacrificed on the battlefield of Vietnam.

Beginning in , American troops were withdrawn from border areas where most of the fighting took place and instead redeployed along the coast and interior. US casualties in were less than half of casualties after being relegated to less active combat. Only five high-ranking Congressional officials were informed of Operation Menu. In March , Prince Sihanouk was deposed by his pro-American prime minister Lon Nol , who demanded that North Vietnamese troops leave Cambodia or face military action. Lon Nol began rounding up Vietnamese civilians in Cambodia into internment camps and massacring them, provoking harsh reactions from both the North Vietnamese and South Vietnamese government.

The invasion of Cambodia sparked nationwide U. Four students were killed by National Guardsmen in May during a protest at Kent State University in Ohio , which provoked further public outrage in the United States. The reaction to the incident by the Nixon administration was seen as callous and indifferent, providing additional impetus for the anti-war movement. Air Force continued to heavily bomb Cambodia in support of the Cambodian government as part of Operation Freedom Deal.

This offensive would also be the first time the PAVN would field-test its combined arms force. During the withdrawal the PAVN counterattack had forced a panicked rout. The NVA and Viet Cong quickly overran the northern provinces and in coordination with other forces attacked from Cambodia, threatening to cut the country in half. The war was central to the U. President Thieu demanded changes to the peace accord upon its discovery, and when North Vietnam went public with the agreement's details, the Nixon administration claimed they were attempting to embarrass the president.

The negotiations became deadlocked when Hanoi demanded new changes. Nixon pressured Thieu to accept the terms of the agreement, threatening to conclude a bilateral peace deal and cut off American aid while promising an air-response in case of invasion. On 15 January , all U.

There was a sixty-day period for the total withdrawal of U. In the lead-up to the ceasefire on 28 January, both sides attempted to maximize the land and population under their control in a campaign known as the War of the flags , fighting continued after the ceasefire, this time without US participation and continued throughout the year. On 15 March , Nixon implied the US would intervene again militarily if the North launched a full offensive, and Secretary of Defense James Schlesinger re-affirmed this position during his June confirmation hearings. Public and congressional reaction to Nixon's statement was unfavorable, prompting the U.

Senate to pass the Case—Church Amendment to prohibit an intervention. Logistics would be upgraded until the North was in a position to launch a massive invasion of the South, projected for the —76 dry season. Tra calculated that this date would be Hanoi's last opportunity to strike before Saigon's army could be fully trained. Within South Vietnam, there was increasing chaos as the departure of the US military and the global recession that followed the Arab oil embargo compromised an economy partly dependent on U. After two clashes that left 55 South Vietnamese soldiers dead, President Thieu announced on 4 January , that the war had restarted and that the Paris Peace Accord was no longer in effect.

This was despite there being over 25, South Vietnamese casualties during the ceasefire period. The strike was designed to solve local logistical problems, gauge the reaction of South Vietnamese forces, and determine whether U. At the start of , the South Vietnamese had three times as much artillery and twice the number of tanks and armoured cars as the opposition.

They also had 1, aircraft and a two-to-one numerical superiority in combat troops over their Communist enemies. Congress also voted in further restrictions on funding to be phased in through and to culminate in a total cutoff in Phuoc Binh, the provincial capital, fell on 6 January Ford desperately asked Congress for funds to assist and re-supply the South before it was overrun. The speed of this success led the Politburo to reassess its strategy. On 10 March , General Dung launched Campaign , a limited offensive into the Central Highlands, supported by tanks and heavy artillery.

If the town could be taken, the provincial capital of Pleiku and the road to the coast would be exposed for a planned campaign in Once again, Hanoi was surprised by the speed of their success. Dung now urged the Politburo to allow him to seize Pleiku immediately and then turn his attention to Kon Tum.

He argued that with two months of good weather remaining until the onset of the monsoon, it would be irresponsible to not take advantage of the situation. While the bulk of ARVN forces attempted to flee, isolated units fought desperately. Civilians flooded the airport and the docks hoping for any mode of escape. By 28 March 35, VPA troops were poised to attack the suburbs. With the fall of the city, the defense of the Central Highlands and Northern provinces came to an end. With the northern half of the country under their control, the Politburo ordered General Dung to launch the final offensive against Saigon.

Hanoi wished to avoid the coming monsoon and prevent any redeployment of ARVN forces defending the capital. For two bloody weeks, severe fighting raged as the ARVN defenders made a last stand to try to block the North Vietnamese advance. On 21 April, however, the exhausted garrison was ordered to withdraw towards Saigon.

An embittered and tearful president Thieu resigned on the same day, declaring that the United States had betrayed South Vietnam. In a scathing attack, he suggested U. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger had tricked him into signing the Paris peace agreement two years earlier, promising military aid that failed to materialize. Thousands of refugees streamed southward, ahead of the main communist onslaught.

On 27 April , North Vietnamese troops encircled Saigon. The city was defended by about 30, ARVN troops.

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To hasten a collapse and foment panic, the NVA shelled the airport and forced its closure. With the air exit closed, large numbers of civilians found that they had no way out. Chaos, unrest, and panic broke out as hysterical South Vietnamese officials and civilians scrambled to leave Saigon. Martial law was declared.

American helicopters began evacuating South Vietnamese, U. Operation Frequent Wind had been delayed until the last possible moment, because of U. Ambassador Graham Martin 's belief that Saigon could be held and that a political settlement could be reached. Schlesinger announced early in the morning of 29 April the evacuation from Saigon by helicopter of the last U. Frequent Wind was arguably the largest helicopter evacuation in history. It began on 29 April, in an atmosphere of desperation, as hysterical crowds of Vietnamese vied for limited space. Frequent Wind continued around the clock, as North Vietnamese tanks breached defenses on the outskirts of Saigon.

In the early morning hours of 30 April, the last U. Marines evacuated the embassy by helicopter, as civilians swamped the perimeter and poured into the grounds. Many of them had been employed by the Americans and were left to their fate. On 30 April , NVA troops entered the city of Saigon and quickly overcame all resistance, capturing key buildings and installations. A tank from the th Division crashed through the gates of the Independence Palace at During the course of the Vietnam War a large segment of the American population came to be opposed to U.

Public opinion steadily turned against the war following and by only a third of Americans believed that the U. Early opposition to U. Kennedy, while Senator, opposed involvement in Vietnam. Many young people protested because they were the ones being drafted , while others were against the war because the anti-war movement grew increasingly popular among the counterculture.

Some advocates within the peace movement advocated a unilateral withdrawal of U. Opposition to the Vietnam War tended to unite groups opposed to U. Others, such as Stephen Spiro , opposed the war based on the theory of Just War. High-profile opposition to the Vietnam War increasingly turned to mass protests in an effort to shift U.

Riots broke out at the Democratic National Convention during protests against the war. On 15 October , the Vietnam Moratorium attracted millions of Americans. In , China extended diplomatic recognition to the Viet Minh 's Democratic Republic of Vietnam and sent heavy weapons, as well as military advisers led by Luo Guibo to assist the Viet Minh in its war with the French China's support for North Vietnam when the U. In the summer of , Mao Zedong agreed to supply Hanoi with 90, rifles and guns free of charge.

Starting in , China sent anti-aircraft units and engineering battalions to North Vietnam to repair the damage caused by American bombing, man anti-aircraft batteries, rebuild roads and railroads, transport supplies, and perform other engineering works. This freed North Vietnamese army units for combat in the South. Sino-Soviet relations soured after the Soviets invaded Czechoslovakia in August The Chinese also began financing the Khmer Rouge as a counterweight to the Vietnamese communists at this time. China "armed and trained" the Khmer Rouge during the civil war and continued to aid them for years afterward.

When Vietnam responded with an invasion that toppled the Khmer Rouge, China launched a brief, punitive invasion of Vietnam in Using airspeed and direction, COSVN analysts would calculate the bombing target and tell any assets to move "perpendicularly to the attack trajectory. The Soviet Union supplied North Vietnam with medical supplies, arms, tanks, planes, helicopters, artillery, anti-aircraft missiles and other military equipment. Soviet crews fired Soviet-made surface-to-air missiles at U.

Over a dozen Soviet citizens lost their lives in this conflict. Following the dissolution of the Soviet Union in , Russian officials acknowledged that the Soviet Union had stationed up to 3, troops in Vietnam during the war. Some Russian sources give more specific numbers: Between and , the hardware donated by the Soviet Union included 2, tanks, 1, APCs , 7, artillery guns, over 5, anti-aircraft guns, surface-to-air missile launchers, helicopters. In addition, Soviet military schools and academies began training Vietnamese soldiers—in all more than 10, military personnel.

These programs were pivotal in detecting and defeating CIA and South Vietnamese commando teams sent into North Vietnam, as they were detected and captured. Cooperation with Czechoslovakia on the development of North Vietnamese air capabilities began as early as As a result of a decision of the Korean Workers' Party in October , in early North Korea sent a fighter squadron to North Vietnam to back up the North Vietnamese st and rd fighter squadrons defending Hanoi.

They stayed through , and pilots were reported to have served. The contributions to North Vietnam by the Republic of Cuba under Fidel Castro have been recognized several times by representatives of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam. There are numerous allegations by former U. Presidential candidate and former Vietnam prisoner of war, according to his book Faith of My Fathers. East German authorities had also begun providing material and technical aid to help develop and modernise the North Vietnamese economy and military. The Polish People's Republic had played a substantive role in brokering and serving as an intermediary for peace-talks between Hanoi and Saigon, as part of a delegation under the International Control Commission alongside Western European nations.

On the anti-communist side, South Korea a. Official records are vindictive of the role of ROK Forces in the war, as State Department reports publicly questioned their usefulness in the conflict, as they have "appeared to have been reluctant to undertake offensive operations, and are only useful in guarding a small sector of the populated area". Approximately , South Korean soldiers were sent to Vietnam, [] each serving a one-year tour of duty.

Maximum troop levels peaked at 50, in , however all were withdrawn by South Korea claimed to have killed 41, Viet Cong. Thai forces saw much more action in the covert war in Laos between and , though Thai regular formations there were heavily outnumbered by the irregular "volunteers" of the CIA-sponsored Police Aerial Reconnaissance Units or PARU, who carried out reconnaissance activities on the western side of the Ho Chi Minh trail.

Both nations had gained experience in counterinsurgency and jungle warfare during the Malayan Emergency and World War II, and their governments subscribed to the Domino theory. New Zealand was however a reluctant participant. Officials prophetically expected a foreign intervention to fail, were concerned that they would be supporting a corrupt regime and didn't want to further stretch their country's small military which was already deployed to Malaysia.

Australia began by sending advisors to Vietnam in , and combat troops were committed in More than 60, Australian personnel were involved during the course of the war, of which were killed and more than 3, wounded.

Australia, with decades of experience from both the Malayan Emergency and its AATTV role in , recognised the necessity of a true counter-insurgency , which relied on providing village-level security, establishing civilian trust and economic incentives and improving ARVN capabilities. Some 10, Filipino troops were dispatched to South Vietnam and were primarily engaged in medical and other civilian pacification projects.

More noteworthy, the naval base at Subic Bay was used for the U. Seventh Fleet from until the end of the war in Beginning in November , Taiwan secretly operated a cargo transport detachment to assist the United States and South Vietnam. Brazil , under a U. Canada, India and Poland constituted the International Control Commission , which was supposed to monitor the ceasefire agreement. There was an active strategy of recruitment and favorable treatment of Montagnard tribes for the Viet Cong , as they were pivotal for control of infiltration routes.

FULRO to fight for autonomy or independence. This provoked a backlash from the Montagnards, some joining the NLF as a result. Following Vietnamization many Montagnard groups and fighters were incorporated into the Vietnamese Rangers as border sentries. A large number of war crimes took place during the Vietnam War. War crimes were committed by both sides during the conflict and included rape, massacres of civilians, bombings of civilian targets, terrorism , the widespread use of torture and the murder of prisoners of war.

Additional common crimes included theft, arson, and the destruction of property not warranted by military necessity. A probable war crime that was neither investigated nor brought to charge was the Thuy Bo massacre , while the Son Thang massacre warranted investigation, and its perpetrators faced court martial and served less than a year in prison. Of the war crimes that were reported to military authorities, sworn statements by witnesses and status reports indicated that incidents had a factual basis.

Simons as "a severe violation of the laws of war". Rummel estimated that 39, were killed by South Vietnam during the Diem-era in democide from a range of between 16, and , South Vietnamese civilians; for to , Rummel estimated a total of 50, killed in democide, from a range of between 42, and , Thus, the total for to is 81,, from a range of between 57, and , deaths caused by South Vietnam. Torture and ill-treatment were frequently applied by the South Vietnamese to POWs as well as civilian prisoners.

Hawkins and William R. Anderson witnessed detainees either confined in minute "tiger cages" or chained to their cells, and provided with poor-quality food. A group of American doctors inspecting the prison in the same year found many inmates suffering symptoms resulting from forced immobility and torture. South Korean forces were accused of war crimes as well. Ami Pedahzur has written that "the overall volume and lethality of Viet Cong terrorism rivals or exceeds all but a handful of terrorist campaigns waged over the last third of the twentieth century", based on the definition of terrorists as a non-state actor, and examining targeted killings and civilian deaths which are estimated at over 18, from to Some mines were set only to go off after heavy vehicle passage, causing extensive slaughter aboard packed civilian buses.

During the Vietnam War, American women served on active duty performing a variety of jobs. Although a small number of women were assigned to combat zones, they were never allowed directly in the field of battle. The women who served in the military were solely volunteers. They faced a plethora of challenges, one of which was the relatively small number of female soldiers. Living in a male-dominated environment created tensions between the sexes. By , approximately 7, women had served in Vietnam in the Southeast Asian theater.

To address this problem, the ANC released advertisements portraying women in the ANC as "proper, professional and well protected. Although female military nurses lived in a heavily male environment, very few cases of sexual harassment were ever reported. Unlike the American women who went to Vietnam, both South and North Vietnamese women were enlisted and served in combat zones. Women were enlisted in both the North Vietnamese Army NVA and the Viet Cong guerrilla insurgent force in South Vietnam, many joining due to the promises of female equality and a greater social role within society.

All-female units were present throughout the entirety of the war, ranging from front-line combat troops to anti-aircraft, scout, and reconnaissance units. Some, like in the WAFC, fought in combat with other soldiers. Others served as nurses and doctors in the battlefield and in military hospitals, or served in South Vietnam or America's intelligence agencies.

During the war more than one million rural people migrated or fled the fighting in the South Vietnamese countryside to the cities, especially Saigon. Among the internal refugees were many young women who became the ubiquitous "bargirls" of wartime South Vietnam, "hawking her wares—be that cigarettes, liquor, or herself" to American and allied soldiers.

Women also played a prominent role as front-line reporters in the conflict, directly reporting on the conflict as it occurred. The French-speaking Australian journalist Kate Webb was captured along with a photographer and others by the Viet Cong in Cambodia and travelled into Laos with them; they were released back into Cambodia after 23 days of captivity. The experience of American military personnel of African origin during the Vietnam War had received significant attention.

For example, the website "African-American Involvement in the Vietnam War" compiles examples of such coverage, [] as does the print and broadcast work of journalist Wallace Terry. An Oral History of the Vietnam War by Black Veterans , includes observations about the impact of the war on the black community in general and on black servicemen specifically. Points he makes on the latter topic include: As a result, by the war's completion in , black casualties had declined to During the early stages the Viet Cong mainly sustained itself with captured arms, often of American manufacture [] or crude, self-made weapons [] and shotguns made of galvanized pipes.

They relied on ambushes, superior stealth, planning, marksmanship, and small-unit tactics to face the disproportionate US technological advantage. The US service rifle was initially the M14 until it was replaced by the M16 rifle. For a period, the gun suffered from a jamming flaw.

Vietnam Helicopter Crew Member Stories Volume Ii

The MAC machine pistol was supplied to many special forces troops in the midpoint of the war. The AC was a heavily armed ground-attack aircraft variant of the C Hercules transport plane. The Huey is a military helicopter powered by a single, turboshaft engine, and approximately 7, UH-1 aircraft saw service in Vietnam. Ground forces also had access to B and F-4 Phantom II and others to launch napalm , white phosphorus , tear gas and chemical weapons , precision-guided munition and cluster bombs.

The Vietnam War was the first conflict where U. The National Security Agency ran a crash program to provide U. However, limitations of the units, including poor voice quality, reduced range, annoying time delays and logistical support issues, led to only one unit in ten being used.


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On a per capita basis, the 2 million tons dropped on Laos make it the most heavily bombed country in history; The New York Times noted this was "nearly a ton for every person in Laos. Air Force official Earl Tilford has recounted "repeated bombing runs of a lake in central Cambodia.

The Bs literally dropped their payloads in the lake. Ten percent of the population of Ho Chi Minh City was suffering from serious venereal diseases when the war ended, and there were 4 million illiterates throughout the South. By , the Viet Minh had lost influence over the Cambodian communists. Under the leadership of Pol Pot , the Khmer Rouge would eventually kill 1—3 million Cambodians out of a population of around 8 million, in one of the bloodiest genocides in history.

The relationship between Vietnam and Cambodia, then ruled by the Khmer Rouge communist party, escalated right after the end of the war. In response to the Khmer Rouge taking over Phu Quoc on 17 April and Tho Chu on 4 May , and the belief that they were responsible for the disappearance of Vietnamese natives on Tho Chu, Vietnam launched a counterattack to take back these islands.

In response, China invaded Vietnam in The two countries fought a brief border war, known as the Sino-Vietnamese War. From to , some , ethnic Chinese left Vietnam by boat as refugees or were expelled. The Pathet Lao overthrew the monarchy of Laos in December , establishing the Lao People's Democratic Republic under the leadership of a member of the royal family, Souphanouvong. The change in regime was "quite peaceful, a sort of Asiatic ' velvet revolution '"—although 30, former officials were sent to reeducation camps, often enduring harsh conditions for several years. The conflict between Hmong rebels and the Pathet Lao continued in isolated pockets.

The millions of cluster bombs the US dropped on Southeast Asia rendered the landscape hazardous. In Laos alone, some 80 million bombs failed to explode and remain scattered throughout the country, rendering vast swathes of land impossible to cultivate and killing or maiming 50 Laotians every year. Most Asian countries were unwilling to accept these refugees, many of whom fled by boat and were known as boat people.

China accepted , people. Included among their ranks were "about 90 percent" of Laos's "intellectuals, technicians, and officials. Agent Orange and similar chemical substances used by the U. Scientific reports have concluded that refugees exposed to chemical sprays while in South Vietnam continued to experience pain in the eyes and skin as well as gastrointestinal upsets. In one study, ninety-two percent of participants suffered incessant fatigue; others reported monstrous births.

There is substantial evidence that the birth defects carry on for three generations or more. In the post-war era, Americans struggled to absorb the lessons of the military intervention. We thought that we were going into another Korean War , but this was a different country. Who was Ho Chi Minh? So, until we know the enemy and know our allies and know ourselves, we'd better keep out of this kind of dirty business. According to a Gallup poll, 62 percent of Americans believed it was an unjust war. Failure of the war is often placed at different institutions and levels.

Some have suggested that the failure of the war was due to political failures of U.

Capabilities

Yet in Vietnam the Army experienced tactical success and strategic failure A new humility and a new sophistication may form the best parts of a complex heritage left to the Army by the long, bitter war in Vietnam. Others point to a failure of U. As he remarked, "I still doubt that the North Vietnamese would have relented. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger wrote in a secret memo to President Gerald Ford that "in terms of military tactics, we cannot help draw the conclusion that our armed forces are not suited to this kind of war.

Even the Special Forces who had been designed for it could not prevail. Hanoi had persistently sought unification of the country since the Geneva Accords, and the effects of U. The costs of the war loom large in American popular consciousness; a poll showed that the public incorrectly believed that more Americans lost their lives in Vietnam than in World War II. More than 3 million Americans served in the Vietnam War, some 1. Westheider wrote that "At the height of American involvement in , for example, there were , American military personnel in Vietnam, but only 80, were considered combat troops.

As of , the U. By war's end, 58, American soldiers had been killed, [A 2] more than , had been wounded, and at least 21, had been permanently disabled. As the Vietnam War continued inconclusively and became more unpopular with the American public, morale declined and disciplinary problems grew among American enlisted men and junior, non-career officers. Drug use, racial tensions, and the growing incidence of fragging —attempting to kill unpopular officers and non-commissioned officers with grenades or other weapons—created severe problems for the U.

By , a U. Army colonel writing in the Armed Forces Journal declared: The morale, discipline, and battle-worthiness of the U. Armed Forces are, with a few salient exceptions, lower and worse than at any time in this century and possibly in the history of the United States. Army recorded more than attacks by troops on their own officers. Eighty-three officers were killed and almost were injured. The Vietnam War called into question the U. Marine Corps General Victor H.

Krulak heavily criticised Westmoreland's attrition strategy, calling it "wasteful of American lives… with small likelihood of a successful outcome. Furthermore, throughout the war there was found to be considerable flaws and dishonesty by officers and commanders due to promotions being tied to the body count system touted by Westmoreland and McNamara.

Ron Milam has questioned the severity of the "breakdown" of the U. Investigating one combat refusal incident, a journalist declared, "A certain sense of independence, a reluctance to behave according to the military's insistence on obedience, like pawns or puppets The grunts [infantrymen] were determined to survive The last conscript was inducted into the army in One of the most controversial aspects of the U. They were used to defoliate large parts of the countryside to prevent the Viet Cong from being able to hide their weapons and encampments under the foliage.

These chemicals continue to change the landscape, cause diseases and birth defects, and poison the food chain. Early in the American military effort, it was decided that since the enemy were hiding their activities under triple-canopy jungle, a useful first step might be to defoliate certain areas. This was especially true of growth surrounding bases both large and small in what became known as Operation Ranch Hand. Corporations like Dow Chemical Company and Monsanto were given the task of developing herbicides for this purpose.

American officials also pointed out that the British had previously used 2,4,5-T and 2,4-D virtually identical to America's use in Vietnam on a large scale throughout the Malayan Emergency in the s in order to destroy bushes, crops, and trees in effort to deny communist insurgents the concealment they needed to ambush passing convoys. Kennedy on 24 November , that "[t]he use of defoliant does not violate any rule of international law concerning the conduct of chemical warfare and is an accepted tactic of war.

Precedent has been established by the British during the emergency in Malaya in their use of aircraft for destroying crops by chemical spraying. The defoliants, which were distributed in drums marked with color-coded bands, included the " Rainbow Herbicides "— Agent Pink , Agent Green , Agent Purple , Agent Blue , Agent White , and most famously, Agent Orange , which included dioxin as a byproduct of its manufacture. About 11—12 million gallons Navy patrol boats were vulnerable to attack from the undergrowth at the water's edge.

In and , the Kennedy administration authorized the use of chemicals to destroy rice crops. Air Force sprayed 20 million U. Another purpose of herbicide use was to drive civilian populations into RVN-controlled areas. Vietnamese victims affected by Agent Orange attempted a class action lawsuit against Dow Chemical and other U.

McNamara's Folly: The Use of Low-IQ Troops in the Vietnam War

Weinstein dismissed their case. In some areas of southern Vietnam, dioxin levels remain at over times the accepted international standard. In , Anh Duc Ngo and colleagues of the University of Texas Health Science Center published a meta-analysis that exposed a large amount of heterogeneity different findings between studies, a finding consistent with a lack of consensus on the issue on the effect of Agent Orange in Vietnam. There is data near the threshold of statistical significance suggesting Agent Orange contributes to still-births, cleft palate, and neural tube defects , with spina bifida being the most statistically significant defect.

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Veterans Administration has listed prostate cancer , respiratory cancers , multiple myeloma , Diabetes mellitus type 2 , B-cell lymphomas , soft-tissue sarcoma , chloracne , porphyria cutanea tarda , peripheral neuropathy , and spina bifida in children of veterans exposed to Agent Orange. Estimates of the number of casualties vary, with one source suggesting up to 3. The military forces of South Vietnam suffered an estimated , killed between and and additional deaths from to and in Defense Department officials believed that these body count figures need to be deflated by 30 percent.

Between , [74] and , [75] Cambodians were estimated to have died during the war including between 40, and , combatants and civilians from US bombings. Unexploded ordnance , mostly from U. According to the Vietnamese government, ordnance has killed some 42, people since the war officially ended. The Vietnam War has been featured extensively in television, film, video games, music and literature in the participant countries.

In Vietnam the diary has often been compared to The Diary of Anne Frank and both are used in literary education. In American popular culture, the "Crazy Vietnam Veteran", who was suffering from posttraumatic stress disorder , became a common stock character after the war. The war is also depicted in popular video games , especially in first-person shooter war genre , such as Line of Sight: Vietnam , Vietcong , Battlefield Vietnam , Vietcong: Fist Alpha , Elite Warriors: Vietnam , The Hell in Vietnam , Battlefield: Vietnam , Call of Duty: Black Ops , Call of Duty: Declassified , Rising Storm 2: Vietnam , and in Far Cry 5 as an additional content.

The war also saw depiction in another genre , in the form of third-person shooter , MMORPG , real-time strategy and role-playing , such as Rambo: Myths play a central role in the historiography of the Vietnam War, and have become a part of the culture of the United States. Much like the general historiography of the war, discussion of myth has focused on US experiences, but changing myths of war have also played a role in Vietnamese and Australian historiography.

Recent scholarship has focused on "myth-busting", [] attacking the previous orthodox and revisionist schools of American historiography of the Vietnam War. This scholarship challenges myths about American society and soldiery in the Vietnam War. Kuzmarov in The Myth of the Addicted Army: Vietnam and the Modern War on Drugs challenges the popular and Hollywood narrative that US soldiers were heavy drug users, and in particular destroys the concept that the My Lai massacre was caused by drug use. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

For a full history of wars in Vietnam, see List of wars involving Vietnam. For other uses of "Nam", see Nam disambiguation. This article has multiple issues. Please help improve it or discuss these issues on the talk page. Learn how and when to remove these template messages. This article may be too long to read and navigate comfortably.

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Taiwan [2] [18] [17] [3]. Military engagements during the Vietnam War. Massacres of the Vietnam War. Terminology of the Vietnam War. Viet Cong and War in Vietnam — War in Vietnam —63 and Strategic Hamlet Program. Joint warfare in South Vietnam, — Gulf of Tonkin incident. Further information on the final North Vietnamese offensive: Ho Chi Minh Campaign. Russell Tribunal and Fulbright Hearings. China in the Vietnam War. Southeast Asia Treaty Organization.

South Korea in the Vietnam War. Thailand in the Vietnam War. Republic of China in the Vietnam War. Canada and the Vietnam War. Vietnam War , and Vietnam War casualties. List of massacres in Vietnam. Weapons of the Vietnam War. Mayaguez incident and Indochina refugee crisis. Vietnam War body count controversy. Vietnam portal United States portal War portal Cold War portal s portal s portal s portal. Fitzgibbon's family the start date of the Vietnam War according to the US government was officially changed to 1 November Lists and Statistics, dated 26 February , [59] and the book Crucible Vietnam: Memoir of an Infantry Lieutenant.

The Vietnam War Chronicles — cited elsewhere in this article gives a figure of 58, U. Cornell University Library Digital Collections. Retrieved April 8, Cesky a slovensky svet. Retrieved 24 February Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. Directorate of Intelligence , Central Intelligence Agency.

Retrieved 20 July Similar Swedish aid was to go to Cambodian and Laotian civilians affected by the Indochinese fighting. This support was primarily humanitarian in nature and included no military aid. Area Handbook for Brazil , p. University of Malaya Student Repository. Retrieved 17 October Archived PDF from the original on 16 October The Tunku had been personally responsible for Malaya's partisan support of the South Vietnamese regime in its fight against the Vietcong and, in reply to a Parliamentary question on 6 February , he had listed all the used weapons and equipment of the Royal Malaya Police given to Saigon.

These included a total of 45, single-barrel shotguns, armoured cars and smaller numbers of carbines and pistols. Writing in , he revealed that "we had clandestinely been giving 'aid' to Vietnam since early Published American archival sources now reveal that the actual Malaysian contributions to the war effort in Vietnam included the following: It is undeniable that the Government's policy of supporting the South Vietnamese regime with arms, equipment and training was regarded by some quarters, especially the Opposition parties, as a form of interfering in the internal affairs of that country and the Tunku's valiant efforts to defend it were not convincing enough, from a purely foreign policy standpoint.