Much-decorated Vietnam War veteran recalls epic days of Tet offensive (Article no longer available from the original source)
Memories of the 26-day-and-night battle for the Hue Citadel that convinced the world that the American occupation of southern Viet Nam was ill-fated might have faded. But not for Hoang Thuc Bao. On January 28,1968 his force got their order to start their task: To liberate the Hue Citadel. Hoang Thuc Bao with 12 other commandos took part in the first attack on an objective essential to the Sai Gon regime, the Hue Citadel. Their tactics so surprised the Americans, that they were able to take the last major target, the Trang Tien Bridge, by 9am the following day. They kept their command of the battlefield after they repelled 21 American counter-attacks.
Vietnam parade marks 40 years since Tet Offensive
Vietnam marked 40 years since the Tet Offensive with military parades of its veterans and re-enactments of the surprise wave of urban attacks that marked a turning point in the war. Former guerrillas and regular soldiers filed past Ho Chi Minh City's Reunification Palace, formerly the presidential palace of the US-backed Saigon regime. Youths in black Viet Cong pajamas with models of AK-47 assault rifles and rocket launchers joined the parade, as did women. "The 1968 Tet Offensive opened a new page in the Vietnam war and struck a blow to the imperialist Americans' will to continue their aggression," said Le Thanh Hai, local Communist Party leader.
Vietnam: The Australian War by Paul Ham
The Australian War is a curate's egg: sometimes revealing and insightful, sometimes sloppy and sparsely referenced - with 814 pages. Yet there are at least 3 examples in the book where Paul Ham has unveiled crucial information about the troubling behaviour of Australian politicians and top military commanders in dealing with the war in Vietnam. It is disturbing to read how the Australian top brass deceived us about the death, on May 24, 1966, of Private Errol Noack - the first national serviceman to be killed in Vietnam. Ham makes it clear that Noack was killed by friendly fire - not by the Viet Cong.
Echoes of the Tet offensive
The Tet offensive marked the moment when what had been seen as a manageable overseas conflict turned into something much more messy. The assaults launched by the Viet Cong against the South Vietnamese and their US military allies in early 1968 were a military fiasco. But the size of the offensive, the dramatic increase in US troop numbers it triggered, and the consequent loss of life on all sides, weighed heavily on US public opinion. The offensive also involved a draining battle for the Khe Sanh airstrip, used as a US Marine base. Khe Sanh became a symbol of the war's futility, abandoned as it was in June 1968, deemed to be of no strategic worth.