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Americans do it differently and believe in clearing by fire. OK if you have the resources of ammunition to sustain it but it also gives away your position to the enemy - as does a visit by a helicopter shortly before last light. Brian and I settled down in our lightweight sleeping bags on the ground rather envious of those who had clambered into hammocks nearby.
As we were obviously staying put for some time, many of the GIs wasted no time in getting a brew going and opening up cans of C rations. They discarded the cans and trash without attempting to bury them
Originally posted by Dave Rabbit
From a military perspective, I can tell you that the POLITICIANS who were making money under the table from ARMS MAKERS were the biggest reason for failure in Vietnam. If the troops were allowed to do their job....
... But because PROFITS are made by keeping America IN WAR and not WINNING WARS, which they found out after World War II, the soldiers were bogged down in a BS take two steps forward, 3 steps back mentality which cost the lives of 58,226 and over 1,800 MIA's and POW's.... and this doesn't even include the several thousand lives of our ALLIES.
[edit on 5/29/2006 by Dave Rabbit]
President Lyndon Johnson wanted a war in Vietnam. He wanted it to help his friends who owned defense companies to do a little business. He needed it to get the Pentagon and CIA to quit trying to invade Cuba. And most of all, he needed a provocation to convince the American people that there was really "no other choice".
On August 5, 1964, newspapers across America reported "renewed attacks" against American destroyers operating in Vietnamese waters, specifically the Gulf of Tonkin. The official story was that North Vietnamese torpedo boats launched an "unprovoked attack" on the USS Maddox while it was on "routine patrol".
The truth is that USS Maddox was involved in aggressive intelligence gathering in coordination with actual attacks by South Vietnam and the Laotian Air Force against targets in North Vietnam. The truth is also that there was no attack by torpedo boats against the USS Maddox. Captain John J. Herrick, the task force commander in the Gulf, cabled Washington DC that the report was the result of an "over-eager" sonar man who had picked up the sounds of his own ship's screws and panicked. But even with this knowledge that the report was false, Lyndon Johnson went on national TV that night to announce the commencement of air strikes against North Vietnam, "retaliation" for an attack that had never occurred.