The Allied war effort in Indochina (the French colonies of Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam) was a war of aggression which allowed many millions of US dollars of arms sales. All allied service men that I cam into contact with did their duties to the best of their abilities. As an Australian serving with the First Battalion Royal Australian Regiment in Vietnam during 1968 - 1969, I feel that it is my duty to inform readers of how the Australian infantry soldiers saw the war and how they felt about fighting the Vietnamese. Because of the fact that this story is so vast, I am splitting the full story into two volumes. "A Gracious Enemy & After the War Volume One cover events in Indochina from 1770 to 1975, when the Americans withdrew from Vietnam after loosing more than 50,000 war dead. It must be remembered that the US army has a rate of 10 soldiers in support for every "Grunt" at the "Sharp End". When viewed in this way, the American KIA figure for the the Twelve years of US involvement is extremely high. After the American withdrawal in 1975, the Vietnamese Army invaded Kampuchea and removed the Pol Pot Regime from power. The yet to be completed "A Gracious Enemy & After the War Volume Two", deals with events in and outside of Vietnam after 1975 and includes the arrival and successful integration into Australian society of the Vietnamese Boat People
In 1975, the last American soldier was withdrawn from Vietnam after the shameful bungling at the American embassy in Saigon as Vietnamese tanks came crashing through the gates on their way to liberate Indochina from American capitalist exploitation! The new national governments took over in all Indochina countries (Cambodia, Laos & Vietnam). Many of the heroes who sacrificed all to ensure victory now came out of the forests and some of them took for themselves property, houses, flats and cars belonging to many of the former ruling classes. Unlike the the scenes in Europe after WW2, there was not wholesale revenge and killings of former ruling classes, the new government choosing instead to send the former rulers to re-education camps. There were some cases where people denounced others in order to obtain their wealth or power. Such is the mean-spirit of jealous people! They caused many to flee from their homelands in Indochina. Many of these people became 'Boat People' and successfully settled in Australia, becoming Australian citizens and successful business people. This is the story of a cross section of these brave people.
The full story, of the three Indochina Wars, including warts and all. The first was the Indochinese People fighting against the French colonists and their suppliers and allies from the USA. The second was the people of Indochina (Cambodia, Laos & Vietnam) fighting against an allied coalition force made up of Australia, New Zealand, South Korea, Thailand, South Vietnam and the USA. The Second Indochina War is usually referred to as the Vietnam War. This book examines the re-adjustment of Vietnamese society after the uprising of the Tay Son Brothers in 1770, their stopping of the Trin and Nguyen families oppression of the Vietnamese people.The coming of the Catholic Church and how this affected the people is examined. As well the activities of Pineau de Bahrain, who was a missionary and the Bishop of Adran - he did much to ensure the French takeover of the majority of South East Asia. That was followed by the French takeover and full colonisation and rule by France. To better control the people, the French forbade the use of Chinese characters in writing and transcribed the entire Vietnamese language into the Latin alphabet, which was then taught in all schools. During WW2, for the first time, Asian People could see that the Caucasian People (White men) could be beaten, That resulted in the First Indochina War which ended with the French defeat at Dien Bien Phu. The Second Indochina War ended in 1975 with the withdrawal of the last American soldier from Vietnam. The Third Indochina War ended when the Vietnamese Army invaded Kampuchea, resulting in Vietnamese tanks entering its capital while the Pol Pot administration fled into the jungle.
Example in this ebook CHAPTER I On the 24th of January, 1805, I made my début on the parade as ensign in the first West York, powdered and equipped in full uniform, with an artificial tail of considerable length tied round my neck, a cocked hat square to the front and a sword five inches shorter than the regulation, made in proportion to my height, being only four feet eleven inches, and within one month of attaining my fourteenth year. My diminutive figure soon attracted the attention of the leading company of the regiment, composed of gigantic Yorkshire grenadiers, and excited so much merriment among them, and so encreased my previous confusion, that my eyes became dim and my feet seemed scarcely to touch the ground. However, some kind expressions from the officers who came forward and surrounded me, and their gay appearance soon dispelled my inquietude. A short time proved sufficient to instruct me in the duties required; and the varied amusements caused the early months of my career to glide rapidly on. Our uniform was plain, faced with green, but suddenly altered owing to an officer of expensive habits, who ordered a new coat to be made and covered with a profusion of gold lace, in which he appeared at the mess table, and so captivated his companions by his rich display, that a unanimous burst of admiration broke forth. Although the lieutenant colonel was as much averse from any thing of the sort as it was possible for any one to be, the new pattern was carried by acclamation, and a tacit consent wrung from the commanding officer, intermixed with his hearty execrations. Frequently, after the alteration, he used to wear his old coat at the mess table by way of a treat, when, to his extreme mortification, the very officer who caused the change would throw out hints about officers being unregimentally dressed. Such was the ingenuity of this individual, that on being refused leave of absence, he waited personally on a general, and afterwards declared that he had represented the necessity of his appearance at home in such moving words, that he not only obtained double the time originally asked for, but also drew tears of sympathy from the general's eyes. In the early part of the summer, General Sir John Moore inspected us on our parade ground, and was pleased to pass his high encomiums on the very fine appearance and steadiness of the men while under arms. Indeed the militia at large were equal to the line2, in the execution of their evolutions and discipline, and were well adapted for the defence of their native shores, at this epoch threatened with invasion by the French. Had their services been required to repel such an aggression,—led on by experienced generals, without doubt they would have proved themselves equal to cope with any troops in the world; and those who had an opportunity of judging at that time, will, I am confident, fully coincide with me and join in just admiration at the high state of perfection that national force had been brought to. During the summer the troops in the numerous towns and camps in Kent were reviewed. Our brigade left Ashford and joined two battalions of the rifle corps, 95th3, at Bradbourne Lees and manœuvred before the Duke of York. The 43rd and 52nd light infantry regiments were organised under the immediate superintendence of Sir John Moore4 (assisted by Major General McKenzie) at Hythe, and Shorncliff camp, in the most exemplary manner. Those corps were indeed the admiration of all, for their discipline, and the rapidity of their light movements, all of which being executed on the moveable pivot, by divisions, or sections, formed columns, squares, lines, and echelon, without a halt, by merely marking time. To be continue in this ebook...