>have to work on a merit badge, hang out with older mentor who used to be an electronics/communication guy in Vietnam >he shows me some equipment, "We won because of our equipment. Look how perfectly machined this tuning cap is. In this radio, you have to slip this switch so you can transmit while you whisper..." >takes a genuine pride in craftsmanship, can work agonizingly slow but is fun to be around and I really enjoy it >finally decide to ask him about Vietnam >tells me some of his impressions, how he's regretful that we abandoned the Hmong and Montagnard peoples >says the Montagnards were the rightful people of South Vietnam, that they were the ones that traditionally lived there >says he didn't talk about the war for decades after, thinks that his country abandoned him, he was spat on when he got back >I didn't want to press the issue too much and strain anything
>>53555004 no he didn't that was all a shame, a ruse. he was a killer just like every other communist leader.
In North Vietnam during the 1950s, political opposition groups were suppressed; those publicly opposing the government were imprisoned in hard labor camps. Many middle-class, intellectual Northerners had been lured into speaking out against Ho's communist regime, and most of those who did were later imprisoned in gulags or executed; this became known as the Nhân Văn–Giai Phẩm affair. Some prisoners died of exhaustion, starvation, illness (often having received no medical attention), or assault by prison guards. Political scientist R. J. Rummel suggests a figure of 24,000 camp deaths during Ho's rule of North Vietnam between 1945 and 1956.
The government launched "rent reduction" and "land reform" programs, which resulted in significant political oppression. Declassified Politburo documents confirm that 1 in 1,000 North Vietnamese (i.e., about 14,000 people) were the quota targeted for execution during the "rent reduction" campaign. During the land reform, testimony from North Vietnamese witnesses suggested a ratio of one execution for every 160 village residents, which extrapolated nationwide would indicate nearly 100,000 executions. According to these the witnesses, the person executed was either executed by firing squad or buried to head level, then were plowed over. Those not executed were forced into hard labor camps Because the campaign was concentrated mainly in the Red River Delta area, a lower estimate of 50,000 executions became widely accepted by scholars at the time.
>>53555219 Widespread use of terror. Murder, kidnapping, torture and general intimidation were a routine part of VC/NVA operations and were calculated to cow the populace, liquidate opponents, erode the morale of GVN government employees, and boost tax collection and propaganda efforts. This extensive use of terror on a daily basis received comparatively little attention from Western journalists occupied with covering the big unit war. Terror was meant to demonstrate that both the rural and urban dweller were powerless against the Viet Cong and that the government could not protect them. Terror extended beyond targeted murders and kidnappings, and included the frequent mortaring of civilians in refugee camps, and the placing of mines on highways frequented by villagers taking their goods to urban markets. Some mines were set only to go off after heavy vehicle passage, causing extensive slaughter aboard packed civilian buses.
Another terror method involved deliberate random shelling of populated areas with 122-mm rockets. Areas victimized included Saigon, Danang and other major cities. At other times the Viet Cong eschewed the use of stand-off weapons and directly attacked villages and hamlets with the express intention of killing men, women and children to sow havoc, panic and insecurity. A 1968 attack on the hamlet of Son Tra in Quang Ngai province for example, used flamethrowers to incinerate 78 civilians, wounded many more, and destroyed most of the hamlet.
>>53555219 Several spectacular incidents of terror stand out in VC/NVA operations, although these were not publicized in the Western media to the extent of the American-perpetrated My Lai Massacre.
Hue: During Tet for example, Communist forces seemed to have carefully planned for mass killings, with prepared hitlists carried both by the invading VC units and local infrastructure operatives. One of the sites of the worse atrocity was the city of Hue. Civil servants, officers, teachers and religious figures were rounded up first and executed after quick "revolutionary" trials. A second roundup fingered leaders of civic organizations, intellectuals, professionals and individual civilians and their families who had worked for the Americans. A barber for example who had cut the hair of Americans had both his hands cut off before being liquidated. The greatest number of people eliminated however appeared to be during the Viet Cong retreat from the city. They were usually shot and buried in well-concealed mass graves that were eventually to yield some 2,800 corpses. Lack of visible wounds on some bodies, including 2 Catholic priests, indicated that they had been buried alive. The 2,800 bodies in Hue were part of a larger group of some 5,800 civilians in the city targeted in Viet Cong attacks for liquidation or abduction. Most of the remaining victims have never been found. Dak Son: 1967 the VC used flamethrowers to incinerate 252 civilians, mostly women and children at the village of Dak Son, in Phuc Long Province. Phu Tan: In 1970, at the village of Phu Tan, near Da Nang, the NVA killed an estimated 100 civilians as they huddled in bunkers for shelter, by tossing in grenades and satchel charges.
>We were in this bar in Saigon and this kid comes up, this kid carrying a shoe-shine box. And he says “Shine, please, shine!” I said no. He kept askin’, yeah, and Joey said “Yeah.” And I went to get a couple of beers, and the box was wired, and he opened up the box, fucking blew his body all over the place. And he’s laying there, he’s fucking screaming. There’s pieces of him all over me, just… like this, and I’m tryin’ to pull him off, you know, my friend that’s all over me! I’ve got blood and everything and I’m tryin’ to hold him together! I’m puttin’… the guy’s fuckin’ insides keep coming out! And nobody would help! Nobody would help! He’s saying, sayin’ “I wanna go home! I wanna go home!” He keeps calling my name! “I wanna go home, Johnny! I wanna drive my Chevy!” I said “With what? I can’t find your fuckin’ legs! I can’t find your legs!” … I can’t get it out of my head. A dream of seven years. Everyday I have this. And sometimes I wake up and I don’t know where I am. I don’t talk to anybody. Sometimes a day, a week. I can’t put it out of my mind.
I can't find a source because searching the terms is difficult but remember reading something about patrols being sent out essentially directionless. Whoever commanded the squads in a platoon would basically just make up whatever for their men to walk around in to find enemies because the upper commands did not give them any cohesive gameplan. So you had thousands upon thousands of people walking around the jungle until someone shot at them or they were forced to return to base because someone inevitably fell into a trap.
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