R.J. Del Vecchio 3
Episode 3 by R.J. Del Vecchio
OK, again, lots of valid reporting of the actual events. But again, the insertion of stuff that's just wrong or misstated badly.
Morley Safer at Can Ne- four Marines were wounded, not one, as they approached the village and took fire from VC there. Once they took the village, and of course all the VC had scurried out the back, the ARVN officer in charge told them to burn the houses from which the sniper fire had come. That was a standard policy of the ARVN, and the responsibility for the village was his, and the snipers had known that and did it anyhow. Safer did give one Marine a Zippo to use, I had that testimony from one of the Marines who was there. So Safer played the whole thing for super drama on how brutal and nasty we were, and left out the important facts of the events.
Caputo is a jerk, when he talks about how maybe the Americans were as afraid of the British Redcoats as the VN villagers were of the Americans. There weren't any "Americans" then, there were colonists all of British descent, speaking the same language as the Redcoats, and they had not been indoctrinated by communist agents that the Redcoats were horrible foreign invaders who would rape the women and kill the children, etc, etc.
And Marlantes really got me with the "they knew it was unwinnable". That was NOT what was said, but it was acknowledged the war could be lost. The war was always winnable, if enough resources and enough will was brought to bear. And by '72, when we were gone and the ARVN repulsed the Easter Invasion of a dozen NVA divisions with hundreds of tanks and far more, far better artillery than the ARVN had, that was the clear demonstration that we had, no matter how messily and with so many mistakes, achieved the goal of getting the South to be able to take care of themselves. When supplied and supported, as the Moscow and Beijing were supplying and supporting Hanoi, that is. But when the supply and support from us went down while from the communist bloc it went up..... there was only one way for it to end.
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