Vietnam: One Soldier's Experience

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AuthorHouse, Sep 24, 2008 - Biography & Autobiography - 190 pages
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Vietnam: One Soldier's Experience is a unique portrayal in the life of a combat soldier who served with one of the Army's elite units, the 82nd Airborne, during the height of the Vietnam War and his subsequent transition back to mainstream America. Danny Coughlin succeeds in taking the reader on a vicarious journey that allows them to engulf his experiences in a manner that helps bring them to a fuller understanding of the Vietnam War and its aftermath. Mr. Coughlin accomplishes this through the use of various concepts, such as, fear, morals, attitude, race, sex, drugs and uses a multitude of fascinating and eye opening stories that help illustrate these concepts. For example, his illustration of fear, from many different levels, not only leaves the reader with a greater understanding of the emotion but, at times, invokes the emotion in the reader. The Third Brigade of the 82nd Airborne was sent to Vietnam in order to help combat the 1968 Tet Offensive by the Vietnamese. Since only one brigade of the 82nd Airborne was dispatched, a small unit in military terms, the 82nd worked with various units: Marines, Special Forces, 101st Airborne, 1st Calvary, 9th Infantry, 25th Infantry, Vietnamese Regular Army, among others. They were deployed by the military, as needed, to help these units. This enabled the author to see a multi-faceted Vietnam, from the Regular North Vietnamese Army in the mountains near the DMZ to the Viet Cong and rice paddies north and west of Saigon, to the challenge of fighting the enemy in the Mekong Delta, a lowland, wet area, filled with rivers, streams and swamps. The geography and the enemy were not the only distinctions, each American unit had its own attitude, culture, and strategy for combating the enemy. These varied experiences present a body of work that is not evidenced in other stories of this elk *** Editor's note: Danny Coughlin wrote this book over a dozen years ago but choose not to release it at that time When asked why he released it now, he replied I used some excerpts from the manuscript in one of my classes and the response was overwhelming. The enthusiasm and thirst for knowledge about the subject brought me to a realization that this is a story that should be told.

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