Category Archives: Viet Nam

Rule 5: Ngoc Quyen

Never saw anything like this on patrol in 1969. Would have been welcome.

Still no freedom of speech in Viet Nam

MM

“Vietnam’s one-party state keeps a tight clamp on dissent and routinely jails activists, bloggers and lawyers who speak out against the communist regime.

The 37-year-old blogger faced a maximum of 12 years in prison, and her lawyer said the heavy [ten-year] sentence she received at the closed-door trial was ‘harsh’.”

Via Yahoo News

Our Vietnam War Dead

These are the men of 60th Company, OC 504-68, who were killed in Vietnam. We graduates of that 1968 class of Infantry Officers Candidate School at Fort Benning, Georgia, commemorate them each Memorial Day.

One graduate:  1LT Jacob Lee Kinser.

Two Tactical Officers:  CPT Reese Michael Patrick and 1LT Daniel Lynn Neiswender.

Four drop-outs:  CPL Sherry Joe Hadley, SP4 Reese Currenti Elia Jr., SP4 Robert Kendrick Chase, and PFC Jeffrey Sanders Tigner.

An American Hero: A Texas Son

“Roy Benavides served two tours in Vietnam as a Green Beret.  During his second tour in 1968 he would be involved in an enemy action for which he was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross.

“In 1973, after more detailed accounts became available, Special Forces Lieutenant Colonel Ralph R. Drake insisted that Benavidez receive the Medal of Honor. By then, however, the time limit on the medal had expired. An appeal to Congress resulted in an exemption for Benavidez, but the Army Decorations Board denied him an upgrade of his Distinguished Service Cross to the Medal of Honor. The Army board required an eyewitness account from someone present during the action; however, Benavidez believed that there were no living witnesses of the “Six Hours in Hell.”

“Unbeknownst to Benavidez, there was a living witness, who would later provide the eyewitness account necessary: Brian O’Connor, the former radioman of Benavidez’s Special Forces team in Vietnam. O’Connor had been severely wounded (Benavidez had believed him dead), and he was evacuated to the United States before his superiors could fully debrief him.”

Read it all.

Via Andy at MyOldRV

Charger Dustoff

Was reading a piece in the latest issue of The VVA Veteran magazine on a documentary called When I Have Your Wounded, the legacy of Army Major Charles L. Kelly, the founder of Dustoff medevacs in Vietnam. Which you can watch free here and you should because it’s worth the hour or so it takes.

Got me to thinking about Charger Dustoff, the call sign of a frequency I used to call medevacs while at Moc Bai, when I was an Army lieutenant advising Vietnamese light-infantry militia, about a klick southeast of LZ Baldy. It was then occupied at first by the 196th Light Infantry Brigade and subsequently by the 7th Marine Regiment. All I ever knew was the call sign Charger Dustoff, which came and took our Vietnamese wounded about 25 kilometers southeast to the 91st Evacuation Hospital at Chu Lai.

The Vietnamese preferred Charger to the Vietnamese dustoffs, first because Charger would come in a hurry while the Vietnamese pilots took their time about it, and second, as their lieutenants told me, the American doctors would work to save a limb whereas the Vietnamese surgeons simply whacked off a damaged arm or leg, making the survivor a beggar for life.

Thanks to Google, I learned that Charger was part of the 236th Medical Detachment out of Da Nang. They initially were assigned to the 196th at Baldy. But when the 196th left Baldy to the 7th Marine Regiment, Charger stayed around, operating out of Hawk Hill, about 16 klicks southeast of Baldy.

And so we used them through December of 1969 when I left Moc Bai to take a desk job at province headquarters in Hoi An. Two stories, one about their pique at having their time wasted and a second one about their fearlessness:

One morning we had a Vietnamese troop who was losing a lot of blood from multiple gunshot wounds while we waited for Charger to come get him. But the medics couldn’t stop the bleeding and he died just as the bird was settling into our little LZ. The pilots were pissed off, partly at our wasting their time and partly because they didn’t much like ferrying wounded Vietnamese anyway. But before they could lay into me about it, they got a call from an American unit and flew off to take care of them.

The other story is about one time after midnight on radio watch when I heard a Marine lieutenant come up on the 7th Regiment’s artillery net seeking a medevac for a dying troop on a distant hilltop under fire. He was told to forget it because the big, twin-rotor CH-46 they used couldn’t be risked for one guy.

At that news the lieutenant broke down and started begging. I got his freq and connected him with Charger who were only too happy to fly into a hot LZ in the dark to get his man. This was at a time when few aircraft of any kind flew at night in Vietnam, let alone helicopters. They got him out safely and I heard later that the wounded young Marine survived. I also heard that the regimental XO was mighty pissed at me for interfering in Marine business.

John Kerry: Moral Midget

Bill Kristol on Twitter: John Kerry entered public life 45 years ago slandering his fellow American servicemen. He leaves it slandering America’s finest ally.

Lurch singlehandedly created the “baby killer” meme which dogged us for decades. Now he ignores the 500,000 Syrians killed in favor of slandering Israel.

Good riddance to a moral midget.

Via Twitter

Bob Dylan was never my poet

I sorta liked “A Hard Rain Is A’Gonna Fall,” but otherwise. Folk music was a joke. And the hard rain didn’t really fall. LBJ retired to the ranch. The only people who got really wet were us veterans of his fuckedup war. Howsomeever.

“We are not a folk but a church, and our native music is church music–the Battle Hymn with its quotation of Isaiah 63, for example, or “The Year of Jubilo,” whose hymnal roots I analyzed here. Our popular poetic language is that of our national epic, the King James Bible. We sang the go-to-meeting songs of the Methodists and other Protestant denominations. This informed the spirituals of black slaves who gave us our first original art form. American folk music? Gospel is as close as we get to such a concept.”

The most authentic thing Dylan ever did—besides going electric—was to refuse to go accept his Nobel Prize for Literature. He knew he was a phony.

Read the rest from a practicing Modern Orthodox Jew.