Western popular memory of the Vietnam War is dominated by persistent myths and stereotypes. Some of the more familiar stereotypes include the morale-shattered ‘grunt’ or American infantryman, turning eventually into the traumatized veteran; the female Viet Cong fighter with a pistol at her hip; and the far-sighted and relentlessly determined North Vietnamese Politburo. Among the more prominent myths of the conflict are that of an American public which turned against war when. ‘body bags’ began to arrive home from the battlefield; a South Vietnamese population which was united in its yearning for the reunification of their country under the leadership of Ho Chi Minh; and a war that was, from the American point of view, ‘unwinnable’.
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- Rethinking the Vietnam War
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