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Do you agree with this interpretation of the problems faced by the United StatesSoldiers in Vietnam?

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Introduction

Do you agree with this interpretation of the problems faced by the United States Soldiers in Vietnam? Source a was published 17 years after the War, (Vietnam; 1964-1975).In this time more information was made available, but witnesses accounts maybe inaccurate due to this lapse in time The author is an American journalist, not a solider or frontline reporter, so his experience is not first hand. Consequently the text's "slant" is different. The title displays limitations; it's likely to be biased as it refers to the My Lai massacre. When in four hours, on an early Saturday morning in March 1968, between 300-400 villagers were killed as a regular search and destroy mission went terribly wrong. Under official orders, Unit Charlie Company had details the area; My Lai, was housing Vietcong members and sympathiser the unit had also been instructed that the villagers had left for market as it was a Saturday; the unit were under the impression to kill all who were left. But in reality no Vietcong were found or killed, only villagers, as they hadn't all left for market. ...read more.

Middle

This is not true. Because, the American forces were not conscripted at the same time, soldiers did not finish the tour of duty together. Consequently the army was a range of skills, "all the time", rookie to officer. And how a maximum of 40% of recruits ever returned home The source is biased, showing narrow mindedness. There's no balance of advantages or disadvantages. E.g. "The tour of duty, in Vietnam was one year. Soldiers were likely to die in that year." There are advantages, such as; an enthusiastic, energetic and fresh army. There are no figures, to support this quote. It doesn't mention American Soldiers had to differentiate between peasants and Vietcong. Neither does it mention the pressure on recruits; like, the 1968 Tet offensive, (Vietcong launched a major attack towards America. 70,000 VC soldiers took America by surprise on Tet holiday, 1500 U.S army killed). Or of the anti war movement, which effected a soldiers motivation, "I kill to live" a U.S private quoted, A view formed from the one sided media coverage perhaps? ...read more.

Conclusion

This is important as the methodical use of this warfare proved a challenge to America, due to it being scenario America was not accustomed to. Through out the war America found no real answer to this tactic. Perfected by Mao tse-tung's red army It required Vietcong units to operate as individuals, eliminating the enemy by retreating and returning to battle any survivors. The main aim was to exhaust the enemy. Guerrilla fighters summarised the tactics like so; * The enemy attacks, we retreat. * The enemy camps, we raid. * The enemy tire, we attack. * The enemy retreats, we pursue. Neither does it mention the psychological effect this had on its victims; The American army. How soldiers were constantly at fear of losing their life; through ambush, surprise, and especially to the horrific use of deadly, unhygienic and the most painful booby traps and mines. 11% of America deaths were due to this and even if troops did not come in contact with such traps, the very fear drove many men to state of mental incapacity, even long after the war. Consequently I don't agree with source a's interpretation of problems faced by united statues soldiers, because it does not justify what it is implying. ?? ?? ?? ?? Glenn Bridges 10BT ...read more.

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