Did you know that there is more to know about the last helicopter out of Saigon on 30 April, 1975. The television footage that has shown the evacuation since 1975 seems to have omitted the actual facts. The footage seems to show American troops being haphazardly abandoning the U. S. embassy; however, the media nearly always fails to explain that all American combat troops had been out of Vietnam since June of 1972.
In January1968, the Communists launched the Tet Offensive that struck all across South Vietnam, including the embassy at Saigon, but the offensive did not achieve victory. Later when U. S. Marines, bolstered by South Vietnamese troops retook the town of Hue, they discovered about 3,000 bodies, burned, beaten or shot, compliments of the benevolent Communists.
Also, U. S. Marines at the 2nd Battle of Khesahn were under siege from January 20, 1968 through 5 April 1968 and the Marine stronghold was to be a grand prize of the Communists; however, the Marines had no intentions of becoming guests of the Communists. The siege failed and the Marines inflicted severe casualties upon the enemy. The Marines were victorious; however, despite their victorious stand against a superior numbered force, the victory did not remain a highlight of the media.
However, the media gave grand coverage to the college students who did not serve, but found time to create havoc in certain parts of the U. S. by inciting riots, which of course was used by the Communists for propaganda.
If you have been told the Americans ran scared, or if the television footage gave you that impression, you should be aware of the facts. There were no U. S. combat troops in Vietnam (unless you count the Marines who guarded the embassy) when the embassy was evacuated. During the entire war, which was never declared by Congress, the American armed forces never lost a major battle, never.
The media for decades has often claimed that the United States lost the war in Vietnam, however, it was not the American warriors that lost. It was the United States Congress that pulled the plug. Congress, due to political considerations, essentially abandoned the South Vietnamese to the Communists. It was not the airmen, coastguardsmen, sailors, and Marines, many of whom gave the ultimate sacrifice that abandoned the South Vietnamese..
People like the Hollywood star, Jane Fonda, visited Vietnam, but not with the USO. Her sympathies were not with the U. S. military; rather, she was against our efforts in Vietnam to save the populace from Communism. Jane Fonda actually posed on an artillery piece for a picture that was also used as propaganda.
Nevertheless, the Communists knew they had been unable to defeat American troops in the field, but once the U. S, Congress refused to continue to finance the war, the results were inevitable. So the next time you see footage of that last helicopter leaving the embassy, you will know that our combat troops were not run out of Vietnam.
The action of Congress regarding Vietnam brings to mind a quote from General William Tecumseh Sherman when he said: “I thought and may have said, the national crisis (Civil war)has been brought about by the politicians, and as it was upon us, they might fight it out.”
Our Vietnam veterans served nobly and honorably and their intent was identical to the veterans of Korea who saved South Korea from tyranny and of the WWI and WWII veterans who saved much of Europe from tyranny. God Bless them all.