Ordered to advance, the fighters were accompanied by other personnel who darted into the fire to retrieve wounded bodies, only to be cut down themselves. Bowden shines in recounting the actions of Americans like Jim Coolican, a dedicated Marine adviser to the Hac Bao, an elite Vietnamese unit, who sensed the impending assault, played a major role in the initial defense of the small command compound in the city center and then rejoined the Hac Bao through the remainder of the grueling battle. Another Marine, Ernie Cheatham, comes through as a larger-than-life leader, a former N.
He stayed up late reading pamphlets of older wars on the eve of battle to teach himself and his men the mechanics of close-in urban warfare, and then scavenged improvised equipment to enable them to fight through city blocks held by the enemy. One of their best friends was the Ontos, a light-armored tracked vehicle armed with six millimeter guns, originally meant to be an antitank weapon. Its design exposed its crew to fire whenever they had to crawl outside to load it, and its fearsome backblast rocked the small vehicle, but it proved invaluable in breaking through the thick masonry of the French colonial buildings.
As heroic as these deeds are, Bowden does not neglect the uglier aspects of war, including racism, substance abuse and atrocities committed by both sides. Bowden goes to some lengths to document and recount the many civilians trapped inside the kill zone as Americans moved block by block. The book focuses on the grunts who did the fighting, mostly the Second Battalion, Fifth Marine Regiment, but also on the Army battalions under the command of Cols. Dick Sweet and Jim Vaught.
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They stumbled, unsuspecting, into the headquarters of the National Liberation Front north of Hue, where they had been sent with inadequate artillery and air support. The fighting for Hue had ground on for almost a month, costing more casualties than any other engagement in the war. Bowden attempts a detailed accounting, arriving at an estimate of over 10, combatants and civilians killed. A few flaws mar an otherwise stellar book. The stories of the Vietnamese pale in comparison with the dramatic stories of American soldiers. This is perhaps inevitable. Not only did Bowden have to rely on translators, but he also spent less time in Vietnam.
However, he does introduce us to Che Thi Mung, a young village woman who reconnoitered American positions in the months preceding the assault, led North Vietnamese soldiers into Hue and fought bravely as the Americans closed in. Anderson , Paperback. Battle of the Bulge : Bastogne [Campaign]. Report item - opens in a new window or tab. Seller assumes all responsibility for this listing. Item specifics Condition: Very Good : A book that does not look new and has been read but is in excellent condition. No obvious damage to the cover, with the dust jacket if applicable included for hard covers.
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- Why Vietnam Isn’t Talking About - POLITICO Magazine.
May be very minimal identifying marks on the inside cover. Very minimal wear and tear. See all condition definitions - opens in a new window or tab.
About this product. World War 2. Modern - Post World War 2.
Why was the Tet Offensive the turning point of the Vietnam War?
However, the bloody fighting for Saigon, Hue and other cities actually resulted in a catastrophic defeat for the North. In this excellent assessment of the key battle of the Vietnam conflict, James Arnold details the plans and forces involved and explains how, despite the outcome of the battle, the American people and their leaders came to perceive the war for Vietnam as lost.
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Osprey - Tet Offensive - Turning Point in Vietnam (Campaign 4) | eBay
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Book excerpt: ‘Hue ‘68’
Great Book This breaks down the Tet Offensive in an easy-to-understand way that gives you more insight into the political and military conflicts going on at the time. Why is this review inappropriate? Back to home page. Listed in category:. Email to friends Share on Facebook - opens in a new window or tab Share on Twitter - opens in a new window or tab Share on Pinterest - opens in a new window or tab Add to Watchlist.