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Topic: 50 years ago today- Vietnam- Orange Kool-Aid
Replies: 8   Last Post: Sep 16, 2020 9:26 PM by: morbidtiger®
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50 years ago today- Vietnam- Orange Kool-Aid

emoji_events [15]
Posted: Sep 16, 2020 3:30 PM
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A few days after that platoon from our company was attacked at night on the side of that mountain, my platoon was ordered to go up the same one. Our platoon lieutenant was on R&R so I was the ranking E-5 among the several we had with us. That was because I had arrived in Nam first and was an assigned squad leader for that week. Nobody told me officially that I was in charge but I was the one communicating with the company commander on the radio. We had about 18 men to start and didn't get too far up the mountain in the heat before a couple of guys decided they had heat exhaustion and we had to call for a medevac chopper to get them taken care of ( Spud earlier mentioned guys "opting out" but this was not too common while in the field)' It wasn't much longer that a couple other guys did the same thing ( I believe the happenings to the other platoon had a lot more to do with this than the heat). The trouble was - the choppers won't take the guy's rucksacks or M-16s so the rest of us had extra packs which weigh about 90 pounds and 4 extra rifles to carry up a steep slope. After a while it became obvious that we could not reach the top during daylight hours and would be faced with the same fate as the other platoon so I informed the Captain that we needed to start back down. He told us that we had to continue and that the new battalion commander was circling above us in his command chopper and that we would be disobeying a Direct Order if we did not continue up the mountain. After some serious discussion with the rest of the platoon we decided that any repercussions from that serious offense would be better than not making it to the mountaintop before dark. We told the captain that if the Colonel wanted to discuss it further , he could meet us at the bottom of the mountain and started back down. Expecting court martial, we reached the flat ground and watched the battalion commander's chopper come in for a landing. Instead of the punishment we deserved, he brought us orange Kool-Aid and ice cream ...... in the middle of the war, we got treats for bad behavior. Guess the new commander did not want our disobedience on his record. Not bragging at all - should have gotten what we asked for. Never told this story anywhere before - for obvious reasons. Fire away.

Message was edited by: clover65®


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Thanks for your service and for doing the right thing.

[4]
Posted: Sep 16, 2020 3:55 PM
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Chain of command is great, except when it's definitely not.

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Re: 50 years ago today- Vietnam- Orange Kool-Aid

emoji_events [6]
Posted: Sep 16, 2020 5:46 PM
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I had mentioned in an earlier post that I had threatened to pull my platoon off the top of a mountain that we had rigged with several tons of explosives because the air liaison officer (a major) said it was too foggy to pick us up in choppers. We had a 106 recoiless rifle and water buffalo on the hill with us and we sure were not taking them down the mountain, so we were going to blow them up. After a back and forth with the liaison officer all day, it was just about dark when we heard the choppers coming. I don't know what would have happened if we had blown up our equipment, but I suspect it would not have been nice. It still would have been better than writing letters home to a grieving parent ...... maybe even mine.

I also refused to clear an Army minefield at the Hai Van pass. My reason that I gave the Army captain was that they did not have a map of the minefield ....... which they placed ......... so if they wanted it cleared they needed to figure out another way other than using my Marines. Our class leader at Engineer School in Camp Lejeune lost both legs and an eye clearing a mine field in Viet Nam. I already knew this when I decided I was not going to do it. My company commander supported my decision!


Clover you have a great memory or diary

[4]
Posted: Sep 16, 2020 7:01 PM
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Write a book like Joe please

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Re: Clover you have a great memory or diary

[1]
Posted: Sep 16, 2020 8:41 PM
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I keep telling him the SAME THING!!!

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Clover - love your storytelling - it is a blessing to have you

[1]
Posted: Sep 16, 2020 8:22 PM
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Recount what happened on here. Thank you for sharing.

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"A life is not important except in the impact it has on other lives." - Jackie Robinson


Re: 50 years ago today- Vietnam- Orange Kool-Aid

[1]
Posted: Sep 16, 2020 8:27 PM
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I've recently been reading _#### in a very small place_, which is a fairly dry, but absolutely fascinating, book about the siege at Dien Bien Phu which was the event that knocked the French out of Vietnam. The Viet Minh were incredibly disciplined, moving large artillery pieces up hills for long distances, but those French and Vietnamese defenders were some seriously bad arsed fellas. They had to survive night after night of wave attacks before they ultimately had to surrender due to loss of personnel and equipment (i.e. bullets). French foreign legion units were some serious fighters. Your post just got me thinking about how the U.S. managed to make most of the same mistakes that the French made 10 years earlier.


Re: 50 years ago today- Vietnam- Orange Kool-Aid

[2]
Posted: Sep 16, 2020 9:03 PM
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“Ike’s” warning when he left the Whitehouse was the military-industrial complex, a formidable union of defense contractors and the armed forces. In 1969, a good high school friend was drafted and paid the price for his name on a wall. He was a pleasant soul who always had the class laughing with his jokes and opposed any fighting.
https://www.honorstates.org/index.php?id=302266


During My Army Years The Favorite Kool-Aid of The Cooks

[1]
Posted: Sep 16, 2020 9:26 PM
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Was Fruit Punch / Cherry Bug Juice....Stuff would rot your teeth on the spot.

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