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"The "Bad, Bad" Vietcong" Topic


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©1994-2019 Bill Armintrout
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Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP29 Nov 2019 9:18 p.m. PST

"The Vietnam War was a nightmare for the people of Vietnam. Both sides killed innocent civilians caught up in the conflict. We have heard of My Lai. We have also heard of the brutal ways of the South Vietnamese Army.

The Vietcong are portrayed as freedom fighters. But they too were no angels. The massacre at Hue is well known.

In fact many say, now there is Al Qaeda, then it was the Vietcong…."
Main page
link

Amicalement
Armand

Personal logo deadhead Supporting Member of TMP30 Nov 2019 1:15 a.m. PST

This starts off as a sensationalist description of atrocities and largely ignores the role of the NVA.This is all about NLF/Vietcong. There is much suggestion of too much interest in sadism and genital mutilation for example. Far too much for comfort.

The site gets more disturbing if you see the other topics covered. I have a strange feeling this could be something ultra-right wing. there is far too much about Russina rape of German women backed with photos of disturbingly young pro Hitler maidens pre war. This site might be even weirder than I thought.

StoneMtnMinis30 Nov 2019 5:10 a.m. PST

Thanks for posting. For too long the media covered-up the true nature of the vc and the nva.

TGerritsen Supporting Member of TMP30 Nov 2019 5:54 a.m. PST

Facts are facts, the site also has articles of atrocities by US soldiers in the Pacific and Germans in Russia. It's really sad when confronted by the fact that atrocities were committed by all sides rather than the usual narratives that an accusation of ultra right wing is made rather than accepting that it might be accurate.

My father in law was a Doctor in Vietnam in 65/66 and he tells many stories of treating Vietnamese villagers in the wake of Viet Cong attacks on villagers just trying to survive and of young men taken by force to serve the VC. You just don't hear much about it as even then the narrative was that the US was both the bad guy and supporting the bad guy regime.

My father in law is proud that he spent as much time treating local villagers for their every day ailments as he did treating soldiers who were in combat, but he recalls that when US press came around they were only interested in hearing about what harm the US inflicted and implied that as a doctor any involvement he had with the locals must have been for nefarious purposes only. He was very disillusioned by the US press from that day forward due to his experiences there.

My personal feeling is that we should never have been in Vietnam and we should never have supported the corrupt regimes of the South, but that doesn't excuse the atrocities committed by the Viet Cong or the NVA, who were less freedom fighters and more brutal revolutionaries that would stop at nothing to achieve victory with a wake of violence and blood that is pretty extraordinary.

Legion 430 Nov 2019 7:57 a.m. PST

Yes as today with the media, "if it bleeds … it leads." Regardless of the facts. I do remember an incident in the early parts of the war. Where the VC tied to US female missionaries up in a hut and burned it down with them in it. By the time the US SF Team got there, they had been burned alive. Or at Hue the VC executing Catholic Nuns.

Now I'm sure there are some events that were just a horrific that the US/SEATO committed, i.e. My Lai. Albeit less than the VC/NVA. And the historical record can go on and on about this topic.

As we see the historical record shows atrocities happened in many places WWII and some even Korea. But in all cases the Allied Forces in WWII and the UN in Korea it was not "policy" as we saw with some of the WWII Axis forces. Or even Communist forces in Korea. And then Vietnam.

As many have said war is a very bad/dirty business and we should commit to it as the very last resort. But in many cases, e.g. Pearl Harbor, 9/11, etc., etc., there was little choice but to go to war.

Sadly we see such events still happened in recent times, and even today. E.g. the former Yugoslavia, Africa, the Mid East, etc.

Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP30 Nov 2019 11:04 a.m. PST

Glad you enjoyed it boys.


War is hell…


Amicalement
Armand

VCarter Supporting Member of TMP30 Nov 2019 12:46 p.m. PST

The difference between Hue and My Lai was that one side received medals for their participation and the other got court martials.

Do you really need to know much more than that?

Wolfhag30 Nov 2019 6:46 p.m. PST

The difference between Hue and My Lai was that one side received medals for their participation and the other got court-martials.

That could be said for most wars the US has been in. What is the UCMJ for the countries the US has fought against?

Wolfhag

Personal logo deadhead Supporting Member of TMP01 Dec 2019 8:22 a.m. PST

Sorry to bring up yet again the linked article that prompted all this. I fully accept the argument of atrocities on all sides in warfare and will of course admit it is not only ultra right wing groups that can act weirdly.

But do look at the rest of the content on this "uncensored history" site…or at least the titles. I am not sure it would be safe to go much further than that. This is more "sick" than "sad"

Legion 401 Dec 2019 9:08 a.m. PST

That could be said for most wars the US has been in. What is the UCMJ for the countries the US has fought against?
So very true Wolf. Did the North Koreans or Chicoms have a UCMJ ? Certainly not the VC or NVA. And it goes without saying about most we have encountered in Africa, the Med East, A'stan, etc. E.g. Samis, AQ, the Taliban, ISIS, BH, AS, etc., etc.

I am not sure it would be safe to go much further than that.
Yes, sometimes reality "sucks". When brought out into the "light" from the protection of the darkness. I feel in most cases with the West, e.g. US, UK, etc., what can be considered war crimes are very few and very far between.

BUT just as importantly it is not policy/SOP/predilection for us as with the e.g. the WWII Japanese, or today ISIS, etc. Which of course makes their number of war crimes/crimes against humanity massive in comparison. They even video tape them today, etc. As part of their "jihadi terror" campaign. Which is un-excusable, IMO … And should warrant little quarter.

M4rtinFierro03 Dec 2019 9:26 a.m. PST

Correct me if I am wrong here, but doesn't the Geneva Convention only apply to wars?

The U.S. never declared war on North Vietnam. This is why their shot down pilots were called "air pirates".

Personal logo deadhead Supporting Member of TMP03 Dec 2019 11:03 a.m. PST

Extraordinary how often this distinction now applies, even when it is the regular forces of two countries in conflict, but yet not "at war". UK vs Argentina in the Falklands is just one example.

Legion 403 Dec 2019 1:18 p.m. PST

The GCs do apply to wars. Albeit it has been long time since I had any contact with JAG or formal classes. However as we see in the late 20th and early 21st Centuries the definition appears to have changed a bit from the traditional version, I'd think. As deadhead posted.

The big thing I can see is especially recently the non-gov'tal "actors"/groups, i.e jihadis & terrorists coming into their own.. So to speak. E.g. AQ, ISIS, AS, BH and even some of the Taliban, etc.

As we know they are basically fighting an insurgency terrorist action(s). That has made how to handle them somewhat questionable. However, since they don't really represent a nation but more of a radical terrorist movement, etc.

We as the West still need to follow the GCs, whenever possible. But since the terrorists don't follow any GCs and act like murders, thugs, etc. I'm sure in the field combatting these terrorist types can be challenging for the West's troops that generally follows the GCs.

But again as we saw previously the North Koreas, VC/NVA, Somalis, etc., didn't/don't follow the GCs. It adds an additional dimension to a conflict that has already a number of grey areas. And most likely increase the brutality, etc.

catavar04 Dec 2019 5:18 p.m. PST

Correct me if I'm wrong here, but was anyone else punished over My Lai besides one officer? I understand emotions can get out of hand under volatile circumstances. But management looking the other way can set policy as well in my opinion.

Legion 405 Dec 2019 2:19 a.m. PST

I believe some high in the CoC were demoted, etc.

link

Calley was charged with several counts of premeditated murder in September 1969, and 25 other officers and enlisted men were later charged with related crimes.[citation needed]
Court martial[edit]
On November 17 1970, a court-martial in the United States charged 14 officers, including Major General Koster, the Americal Division's commanding officer, with suppressing information related to the incident. Most of the charges were later dropped. Brigade commander Colonel Henderson was the only high ranking commanding officer who stood trial on charges relating to the cover-up of the Mỹ Lai massacre; he was acquitted on 17 December 1971.[92]
During the four-month-long trial, Calley consistently claimed that he was following orders from his commanding officer, Captain Medina. Despite that, he was convicted and sentenced to life in prison on 29 March 1971, after being found guilty of premeditated murder of not fewer than twenty people. Two days later, President Richard Nixon made the controversial decision to have Calley released from armed custody at Fort Benning, Georgia, and put under house arrest pending appeal of his sentence. Calley's conviction was upheld by the Army Court of Military Review in 1973 and by the U.S. Court of Military Appeals in 1974.[93]
In August 1971, Calley's sentence was reduced by the Convening Authority from life to twenty years. Calley would eventually serve three and one-half years under house arrest at Fort Benning including three months in a disciplinary barracks in Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. In September 1974, he was paroled by the Secretary of the Army, Howard Callaway.[93][94]
In a separate trial, Medina denied giving the orders that led to the massacre, and was acquitted of all charges, effectively negating the prosecution's theory of "command responsibility", now referred to as the "Medina standard". Several months after his acquittal, however, Medina admitted he had suppressed evidence and had lied to Henderson about the number of civilian deaths.[95]
Captain Kotouc, an intelligence officer from 11th Brigade, was also court-martialed and found not guilty. Koster was demoted to brigadier general and lost his position as the Superintendent of West Point. His deputy, Brigadier General Young, received a letter of censure. Both were stripped of Distinguished Service Medals which had been awarded for service in Vietnam.[96]

We had a class on My Lai in the Inf Ofc Adv Course. Why it happened, how to prevent war crimes, etc. But that a long time ago, '83. old fart

I was a Rifle Plt Ldr '80-'82 and later Mech Co. Cdr '87-'89. We there instructed You are responsible for everything those under your command do and fail to do.

Also Rank has it's privileges and responsibilities …

My Lia was a very sad day for the US Military. But was an example of the mess the entire war had degenerated to. After Vietnam the US ARMY had to pull itself up by it's boot straps. Revaluate, and rebuild itself after what it had devolved to.

With the need to send 1000s upon 1000s of troops there to fight the war. Plus all the forces the US had deployed all over the world, mostly in West Germany. It was not long before the standards for who was drafted were lowered. Bringing in some who were really not fit to be in the military. Who had problems in civilian life, etc., etc. The entire situation just kept going from bad to worse. The Draftee problem was not the only rub. Much can be blamed on the Leadership in DC and at the high levels in the military.

That is why after the war the US ARMY had do so much to make itself a viable fighting force again. I join ROTC in '75 right after graduating from high school. I saw and was part of that "rebuilding".

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