Vietnam Facts vs. Fiction.

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Quigley_Sharps, Mar 18, 2009.

  1. Quigley_Sharps

    Quigley_Sharps The Badministrator Administrator Founding Member

    We do not live in Vietnam, Vietnam lives in us.

    Vietnam Facts vs. Fiction.

    This will take your mind off of the little skirmish in Iraq; for a little while anyway.

    I found this article very interesting. The most notable fact is that 2.7 million Americans actually served in the Vietnam Theater of war.

    In the last census nearly 14 million Americans claimed they served in Vietnam.

    Four out of five are lying. I wonder why.

    Vietnam Facts vs. Fiction

    For over 30 years I, like many Vietnam veterans, seldom spoke of Vietnam, except with other veterans, when training soldiers, and in public speeches. These past five years I have joined the hundreds of thousands who believe it is high time the truth be told about the Vietnam War and the people who served there. It's time the American people learn that the United States military did not lose the War, and that a surprisingly high number of people who claim to have served there, in fact, DID NOT.
    As Americans, support the men and women involved in the War on Terrorism. The mainstream media is once again working tirelessly to undermine their efforts and force a psychological loss or stalemate for the United States. We cannot stand by and let the media do to today's warriors what they did to us 35 years ago.
    Below are some assembled facts most readers will find interesting. It isn't a long read, but it will....I guarantee....teach you some things you did not know about the Vietnam War and those who served, fought, or died there. Please share it with those with whom you communicate.
    Capt. Marshal Hanson, U.S.N.R (Ret.)
    Capt. Scott Beaton, Statistical Source

    Vietnam War Facts:
    Facts, Statistics, Fake Warrior Numbers, and Myths Dispelled

    9,087,000 (Million) military personnel served on active duty during the official Vietnam era from August 5, 1964 to May 7, 1975.
    2,709,918 Americans served in uniform in Vietnam
    Veterans represented 9.7% of their generation.
    240 men were awarded the Medal of Honor during the Vietnam War

    1. The first man to die in Vietnam was James Davis, in 1958. He was with the 509th Radio Research Station. Davis Station in Saigon was named for him.

    2. 58,148 were killed in Vietnam

    3. 75,000 were severely disabled.

    4. 23,214 were 100% disabled.

    5. 5,283 lost limbs.

    6. 1,081 sustained multiple amputations.

    7. Of those killed, 61% were younger than 21.

    8. 11,465 of those killed were younger than 20 years old.

    9. Of those killed, 17,539 were married.

    10. Average age of men killed: 23.1 years.

    11. Five men killed in Vietnam were only 16 years old.

    12. The oldest man killed was 62 years old.

    13. As of January 15, 2004, there are 1,875 Americans still unaccounted for from the Vietnam War.

    14. 97% of Vietnam Veterans were honorably discharged.

    15. 91% of Vietnam Veterans say they are glad they served.

    16. 74% say they would serve again, even knowing the outcome.

    17. Vietnam veterans have a lower unemployment rate than the same non-vet age groups.

    18. Vietnam veterans' personal income exceeds that of our non-veteran age group by more than 18 percent.

    19. 87% of Americans hold Vietnam Veterans in high esteem.

    20. There is no difference in drug usage between Vietnam Veterans and non-Vietnam Veterans of the same age group (Source: Veterans Administration Study)

    21. Vietnam Veterans are less likely to be in prison - only one-half of one percent of Vietnam Veterans have been jailed for crimes.

    22. 85% of Vietnam Veterans made successful transitions to civilian life.

    23. Interesting Census Stats and "Been There" Wanabees:

    a. 1,713,823 of those who served in Vietnam were still alive as of August, 1995 (census figures).
    b. During that same Census count, the number of Americans falsely claiming to have served in-country was: 9,492,958.

    24. As of the current Census taken during August, 2000, the surviving U.S. Vietnam Veteran population estimate is: 1,002,511. This is hard to believe, losing nearly 711,000 between '95 and '00. That's 390 per day.

    24. During this Census count, the number of Americans falsely claiming to have served in-country is: 13,853,027. By this census, FOUR OUT OF FIVE WHO CLAIM TO BE Vietnam vets are not.

    25. The Department of Defense Vietnam War Service Index officially provided by The War Library originally reported with errors that 2,709,918 U.S. Military personnel as having served in-country. Corrections and confirmations to this erroneous index resulted in the addition of 358 U.S. Military personnel confirmed to have served in Vietnam but not originally listed by the Department of Defense. (All names are currently on file and accessible 24/7/365).

    26. Isolated atrocities committed by American Soldiers produced torrents of outrage from anti-war critics and the news media while Communist atrocities were so common that they received hardly any media mention at all. The United States sought to minimize and prevent attacks on civilians while North Vietnam made attacks on civilians a centerpiece of its strategy.

    27. Americans who deliberately killed civilians received prison sentences while Communists who did so received commendations. From 1957 to 1973, the National Liberation Front assassinated 36,725 Vietnamese and abducted another 58,499. The death squads focused on leaders at the village level and on anyone who improved the lives o f the peasants such as medical personnel, social workers, and school teachers. - Nixon Presidential Papers.

    Common Myths Dispelled:

    #1. Myth: Common Belief is that most Vietnam veterans were drafted.
    Fact: 2/3 of the men who served in Vietnam were volunteers. 2/3 of the men who served in World War II were drafted. Approximately 70% of those killed in Vietnam were volunteers.

    #2. Myth: The media have reported that suicides among Vietnam veterans range from 50,000 to 100,000 - 6 to 11 times the non-Vietnam veteran population.
    Fact: Mortality studies show that 9,000 is a better estimate. "The CDC Vietnam Experience Study Mortality Assessment showed that during the first 5 years after discharge, deaths from suicide were 1.7 times more likely among Vietnam veterans than non-Vietnam veterans. After that initial post-service period, Vietnam veterans were no more likely to die from suicide than non-Vietnam veterans. In fact, after the 5-year post-service period, the rate of suicides is less in the Vietnam veterans' group.

    #3.Myth: Common belief is that a disproportionate number of blacks were killed in the Vietnam War.
    Fact: 86% of the men who died in Vietnam were Caucasians, 12.5% were black, and 1.2% was other races. Sociologists Charles C. Moskos and John Sibley Butler, in their recently published book "All That We Can Be," said they analyzed the claim that blacks were used like cannon fodder during Vietnam "and can report definitely that this charge is untrue. Black fatalities amounted to 12 percent of all Americans killed in Southeast Asia, a figure proportional to the number of blacks in the U.S. Population at the time and slightly lower than the proportion of blacks in the Army at the close of the war."

    #4 Myth: Common belief is that the war was fought largely by the poor and uneducated.
    Fact: Servicemen who went to Vietnam from well-to-do areas had a slightly elevated risk of dying because they were more likely to be pilots or infantry officers. Vietnam Veterans were the best educated forces our nation had ever sent into combat. 79% had a high school education or better. Here are statistics from the Combat Area Casualty File (CACF) as of November 1993. The CACF is the basis for the Vietnam Veterans Memorial (The Wall): Average age of 58,148 killed in Vietnam was 23.11 years. (Although 58,169 names are in the Nov. 93 database, only 58,148 have both event date and birth date. Event date is used instead of declared dead date for some of those who were listed as missing in action) Deaths Average Age Total: 58,148, 23.11 years Enlisted: 50,274, 22.37 years Officers: 6,598, 28.43 years Warrants: 1,276, 24.73 years E1 525, 20.34 years 11B MOS: 18,465, 22.55 years

    #5 Myth: The common belief is the average age of an infantryman fighting in Vietnam was 19.
    Fact: Assuming KIAs accurately represented age groups serving in Vietnam, the average age of an infantryman (MOS 11B) serving in Vietnam to be 19 years old is a myth, it is actually 22. None of the enlisted grades have an average age of less than 20. The average man who fought in World War II was 26 years of age.

    #6 Myth: The Common belief is that the domino theory was proved false.
    Fact: The domino theory was accurate. The ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) countries, Philippines, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, and Thailand stayed free of Communism because of the U.S. commitment to Vietnam. The Indonesians threw the Soviets out in 1966 because of America’s commitment in Vietnam. Without that commitment, Communism would have swept all the way to the Malacca Straits that is south of Singapore and of great strategic importance to the free world. If you ask people who live in these countries that won the war in Vietnam, they have a different opinion from the American news media. The Vietnam War was the turning point for Communism.

    #7 Myth: The common belief is that the fighting in Vietnam was not as intense as in World War II.
    Fact: The average infantryman in the South Pacific during World War II saw about 40 days of combat in four years. The average infantryman in Vietnam saw about 240 days of combat in one year thanks to the mobility of the helicopter. One out of every 10 Americans who served in Vietnam was a casualty.. 58,148 were killed and 304,000 wounded out of 2.7 million who served. Although the percent that died is similar to other wars, amputations or crippling wounds were 300 percent higher than in World War II ...75,000 Vietnam veterans are severely disabled. MEDEVAC helicopters flew nearly 500,000 missions. Over 900,000 patients were airlifted (nearly half were American). The average time lapse between wounding to hospitalization was less than one hour. As a result, less than one percent of all Americans wounded, who survived the first 24 hours, died. The helicopter provided unprecedented mobility. Without the helicopter it would have taken three times as many troops to secure the 800 mile border with Cambodia and Laos (the politicians thought the Geneva Conventions of 1954 and the Geneva Accords or 1962 would secure the border).

    #8 Myth: Kim Phuc, the little nine year old Vietnamese girl running naked from the napalm strike near Trang Bang on 8 June 1972.....shown a million times on American television....was burned by Americans bombing Trang Bang.
    Fact: No American had involvement in this incident near Trang Bang that burned Phan Thi Kim Phuc. The planes doing the bombing near the village were VNAF (Vietnam Air Force) and were being flown by Vietnamese pilots in support of South Vietnamese troops on the ground. The Vietnamese pilot who dropped the napalm in error is currently living in the United States. Even the AP photographer, Nick Ut, who took the picture, was Vietnamese. The incident in the photo took place on the second day of a three day battle between the North Vietnamese Army (NVA) who occupied the village of Trang Bang and the ARVN (Army of the Republic of Vietnam) who were trying to force the NVA out of the village. Recent reports in the news media that an American commander ordered the air strike that burned Kim Phuc are incorrect. There were no Americans involved in any capacity. "We (Americans) had nothing to do with controlling VNAF," according to Lieutenant General (Ret) James F. Hollingsworth, the Commanding General of TRAC at that time. Also, it has been incorrectly reported that two of Kim Phuc's brothers were killed in this incident. They were Kim's cousins not her brothers.

    #9 Myth: The United States lost the war in Vietnam.
    Fact: The American military was not defeated in Vietnam. The American military did not lose a battle of any consequence. From a military standpoint, it was almost an unprecedented performance. General Westmoreland quoting Douglas Pike, a professor at the University of California, Berkley a major military defeat for the VC and NVA.
    The fall of Saigon happened 30 April 1975, two years AFTER the American military left Vietnam. The last American troops departed in their entirety 29 March 1973.
    FACT: How could we lose a war we had already stopped fighting? We fought to an agreed stalemate. The peace settlement was signed in Paris on 27 January 1973.

    * It called for release of all U.S. prisoners, withdrawal of U.S. forces, limitation of both sides' forces inside South Vietnam and a commitment to peaceful reunification.

    *The 140,000 evacuees in April 1975 during the fall of Saigon consisted almost entirely of civilians and Vietnamese military, NOT American military running for their lives.

    *There were almost twice as many casualties in Southeast Asia (primarily Cambodia) the first two years after the fall of Saigon in 1975 then there were during the ten years the U.S. was involved in Vietnam.

    *Thanks for the perceived loss and the countless assassinations and torture visited upon Vietnamese, Laotians, and Cambodians goes mainly to the American media and their undying support-by-misrepresentation of the anti-War movement in the United States.

    *As with much of the Vietnam War, the news media misreported and misinterpreted the 1968 Tet Offensive. It was reported as an overwhelming success for the Communist forces and a decided defeat for the U.S. Forces. Nothing could be further from the truth. Despite initial victories by the Communists forces, the Tet Offensive resulted in a major defeat of those forces. General Vo Nguyen Giap, the designer of the Tet Offensive, is considered by some as ranking with Wellington, Grant, Lee and MacArthur as a great commander. Still, militarily, the Tet Offensive was a total defeat of the Communist forces on all fronts. It resulted in the death of some 45,000 NVA troops and the complete, if not total destruction of the Viet Cong elements in South Vietnam. The Organization of the Viet Cong Units in the South never recovered. The Tet Offensive succeeded on only one front and that was the News front and the political arena. This was another example in the Vietnam War of an inaccuracy becoming the perceived truth. However, inaccurately reported, the News Media made the Tet Offensive famous.

    Please give all credit and research to:
    Capt. Marshal Hanson, U.S.N.R (Ret.)
    Capt. Scott Beaton, Statistical Source<!-- google_ad_section_end --><!-- / message --><!-- sig -->
  2. Cephus

    Cephus Monkey+++ Founding Member

    I for one thank you for this ,I am a Vet and I served in the Nam .
    I lost a lung and was wounded in the leg and arse .
    I run into many of the false Vietnam vet at the VA
    I've had some words with some on different boards
    Its great to see a lot of the myths put to rest ,I thank God
    for the wife I have everyday shes the one that helped me put my life back together
    when I came home from my second tour .
    Again Thank You and the Gentelmen that took the time to put all down !!!!
  3. RouteClearance

    RouteClearance Monkey+++

    I am already encountering this regrding TGWOT(OIF/OEF). It's really sad and now illegal to make such claims(Stolen Valor Act Of 2006). After I warn the socalled posers about this law and all I have to do is make one call to my local FBI feild office, they shut up go their own way.

    I am extremely lucky to have walked away from the sandbox without a damn scratch, for a Purple Heart is one medal I never want to earn.
  4. Pauly Walnuts

    Pauly Walnuts Monkey++

    Thanks for your duty (for the real warriors), it's gentlemen like you that I met as a young man who inspired me to be United States Marine.
  5. E.L.

    E.L. Moderator of Lead Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    Cephus, Routclearance, and Paulywalnuts, thank you all for your service. [flag]
  6. Tango3

    Tango3 Aimless wanderer

    +1to you guys; I don't have what it takes to be a marine, and I'm not ashamed to admit it. Air force is/was a different world.

    Run into " crack smokin' idiots" all the time..
    Pre- iraq( 2003 I was were sitting in theplant break room with another maintenance guy (a marine 60 gunner); "Tracy", he was talking about training in the phillipines and a new kid off the production floor comes up wants to know if they can recall you back "in" with iraq heating up??
    ..." What branch were you in"?
    "My unit is getting ready to go over they wish I could go with them..."
    what unit was that ?
    its a secret unit; skull and bones."
    tracy was talking about carying the 60 playing with withthe philipine marines, and the kid complains "we had to carry our sea bags all over the base with all our uniforms in them
    ( they were heavy)
    were trying to be polite,but.. turns out the kid got through two weeks of basic and was sent home( bus ticket and a burrito)..
    "Sorry son don't worry about being recalled: if you didn't complete basic you were never in the military."

    Hence forth he was known as the "crack smokin idiot"...[beat][ROFL]
  7. BigO01

    BigO01 Monkey+++ Founding Member

    Hey now cut us "Posers" a break it's blast and great for some of the best laughs I have ever had in my life with this "Pee down their leg" wimps society has cranked out in the last several decades .

    Back in the late 80's me and a buddy were out doing a bit of drinking and playing some pool when low and behold we run into a small group of the do goody little wimps back from our School days .

    We hoped the wouldn't recognize us but to our missfortune they did and had to come and talk to us .

    They were still the same silver spoon in their mouth little wusses they always were and of course when they found he and I worked for a living had to make snide remarks about how they we headed off to be Attorneys and DR.s or take over their Daddys businesses .

    As the evening wore on we got more annoyed and of course drunker when finally one of the little pukes made a comment that pushed me over the edge and I grabed him by his throat and told the POS how I was gonna do to him what me and my SEAL buddies use to do to the Gooks in NAM .
    He and his friends all went white and began shaking like leaves and sweating , I swear he looked like he was about to piss himself when I heard one his dweebs make the comment about how he had better say he was sorry cause those SEALS were a bunch of crazy MF's .

    It was great , they were all on the verge of tears they were so scared , when my buddy finally looked at me with the biggest grin in the world and I couldn't stand it anymore and broke down laughing at the fools so hard I doubled over .

    We then reminded the tards that back in 78 we all had met in SCHOOL AT THE AGE OF 15 and there was no way in hell anyone there had served a Day in NAM .

    The whole NAM vets are crazy whacked out killers on the verge of cracking is great to have fun especially when you scare the crap out of some AHOLE who if they know how old you are and took the time to think would know it's all just an act LMAO !! [ROFL]
  8. dragonfly

    dragonfly Monkey+++

    My oldest son, now 36 and working for "The toughest Sheriff in America", told me that all the deputies are aware that should they happen to run into a "jarhead" of my age, they are very very careful! Seems us old guys have a way of being a helluva lot more than they bargained for, when they put those uniforms and badges on....
    Me, I'm just a lowly OLD 12B30 combat engineer. Went in as RA, and was 17...came out 2 years 8 months and 28 days later, and found I had aged to middle age!
    Strange, what it can do to you.
    Managed to get myself a Presidential citation and one from Gen. Westmoreland as well.
    73rd Engr. Bn.
  9. Cephus

    Cephus Monkey+++ Founding Member

    I did not know about this law ,but ya bet I'll be quoting you on my next trip
    to the VA.
    You are extremely lucky as have my three boys have been
    One retired now=Navy
    One in Germany =ARMY
    One getting ready to go back in a few months =ARMY ,CO for a combat engineer company.(dragon fly he may need a few people on this trip LOL)

    God Keep them all safe .[freedom] Ain't cheap and only accepts one payment and that is BLOOD
    I'd rather be spending it here !!
  10. Tango3

    Tango3 Aimless wanderer

    Scaring the "kiddies" big 001??[LMAO][nono][gone]

    (skull and bones?) me too:
    (" freakin' zipper head, I should a shot yer ass in Da nang; when I had the chance")My daughters asian friends haven't heard that rascist one yet, but I'vegotta be carereful it doesn' bust out at an inopportune time....

    get that Gary Busey face and: "HEY! Smartazz I've still got my Kabar and vise grips!..."[beat][beat][fnny]
  11. ghrit

    ghrit Bad company Administrator Founding Member

    those SEALS were a bunch of crazy MF's .

    That part is true. Don't ask. Some sorts of training does that to you. No, I wasn't one of them, I was Regular Navy. However, there was some exposure --

    Regarding the #9 myth, the loss was more political, either in the peacenik US Congress that took us out of the country or in Saigon. Definatly not a military loss per se. Giap has been quoted as saying he was amazed that there was no followup after the Tet offensive, he said the NVA was on it's heels and could easily have been steamrollered into mush in a matter of days.
  12. RouteClearance

    RouteClearance Monkey+++

    Tht is why Gen. Westmoreland wanted the additional manpower, but congress and the secdef. thought differently. That "Surge" would have all but ended the Vietnam War within 6 months to a year.

    The final estimation is that the US inflicted well over 2,000,000 casualties by the end of the war.
  13. Conagher

    Conagher Dark Custom Rider Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    That was a very good read and informative too....thanks for posting that....and thank you to all the vets out there for their service......[freedom]
  14. Seawolf1090

    Seawolf1090 Retired Curmudgeonly IT Monkey Founding Member

    An excellent read!
    I have had some ask if I served in Vietnam - I ain't THAT old! I enlisted in September of '75 (delayed enlistment) at 18 years of age and actually went into the USAF in January of '76 (avionics tech). Well after we had fully left Vietnam.
    Did four years in the USAF here in sunny Florida - Tyndall AFB.
    Wanted to re-up eight months after getting out, but would have been sent back to Tyndall! I wanted to travel.
    Went into the USN in '80 for six years (electronic tech). We tweaked Kadaffy's nose, sailed across his "line of death" in the Mideast a couple times (he never came out to play), and finally got out, having NEVER been "at the sharp end" in combat.
    I honor all who served, as the frontline troops need the guys and gals supporting them so they can do their jobs! But the guys who did the dirty work deserve special consideration. I was never tested that way, so still don't really KNOW how it was.
    All the guys I know who did see combat never talk about it. Seems the sure sign of a poser is the one bragging about it.
  15. jim2

    jim2 Monkey+++

    A hat tip to all you combat vets, and a hearty "Thanks!!!"

  16. RaymondPeter

    RaymondPeter Simple Man


    A great post! Thank you for putting out the truth about 'Vam and it's REAL vets!
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