The Vietnam War started in 1956 when the United States was attempting to stop North Vietnam from spreading communist to South Vietnam. During this time, most men volunteer and some were even drafted. The United States supported South Vietnam in hopes to drive out the communist by fighting them off. The war on American troops was difficult because American troops soon fought communist in the south, called the Viet Cong; yet also fighting against the North Vietnamese (Spector). As the war progressed, many American troops had suffered from injuries fighting hard against the North Vietnam and Viet Cong. Over the years of the war there have been many battles that have been fought; one in particular is the Battle of la Drang. On November 14, 1965 American troops decided to land in la Drang Valley using a new tactic of air mobility as their first evasion against the North Vietnamese (Galloway YouTube). The Battle of la Drang lasted four days and three nights with many casualties; roughly 240 American soldiers were killed and had over 300 wounded and about 1800 North Vietnamese soldiers were killed in the mist of the intense battle (Steinman 30). This battle was one of the first major battles between the United States and North Vietnam. The setting is a Landing Zone (LZ), code name, X-Ray, which is located in the central highlands just north of South Vietnam in 1965. Private First Class (PFC) Her from the farm lands of Minnesota was drafted into the war and is attached to the 1st Battalion, 7th Air Cavalry, Airmobile, 1st Cavalry Division, in Charlie Company. His Platoon Sergeant is Sargent First Class (SFC) Schuette, followed by his squad leader, Staff Sergeant (SSG) Olson. PFC Her journals of his experiences of war, the things he sees and goes through.
November 13, 1965
1030 Hundred Hours
I overheard our platoon sergeant, SFC Schuette, briefing our squad leaders about the mission. As a PFC or just a private, we are usually uninformed of what is going on unless told otherwise. It seems like Lieutenant Colonel Hal Moore, our commander, had given the orders of a search-and-destroy mission into the la Drang Valley using air mobility (Galloway). UH-1B Huey helicopters are being used to airlift the 7th Cavalry Regiment of the 1st Battalion, a total of 450 men, into this valley (Galloway). But there seems to be an issue, LZ X-Ray seems to be too small. “The space at X-Ray amounted to more clear ground than a football field” (Moore & Galloway 61). This caused and issue and it seems that there will be multiple trips into LZ X-Ray. Also, if I remember correctly, these helicopters can only hold up to six men (YouTube). Would this be like of retaliation against the North Vietnamese after they attempted to destroy Plei Me? This is a search-and-destroy mission; I just hope we continue to meet light resistant and put an end to them and their supplies.
2137 Hundred Hours
As our squad leaders, SSG Olson, briefed us...