Talking ‘Crap’ about the Ho Chi Minh Trail in Laos.
Above Photo: Surveillance Device fashioned as animal excrement.
I did a talk recently on the subject of the Ho Chi Minh Trail during the Vietnam War and now, which is also relevant to the proceedings of my novel BACK.
I spent a day going through a lot of great photos for the slide show I used, including the headline photo, which is actually a movement sensor shaped like a turd that was dropped by the US onto the Ho Chi Minh Trail to detect movement along it.
Other photos I used included the one above, illustrating a B-52 strike on the Trail, as well as the one below to show the aftermath of these bombings, and defoliants which have exposed part of the Trail to the air.
The North Vietnamese were tenacious in repairing the Ho Chi Minh Trail after attacks such as these, and in the end the US had no answer to it, as ever-increasing amounts of material, food and soldiers moved down the Trail from North Vietnam, through Laos and Cambodia and into South Vietnam to strengthen the fight against the US and the South Vietnamese armies.
The Ho Chi Minh Trail has rightly been described as one of the greatest feats of military engineering ever undertaken – surprisingly in the National Security Agency’s official US history of the war.
Nowadays it is littered with unexploded ordnance (UXO) of all kinds, making it a hazardous place to wander without a guide, and I used some slides of this ordnance and of UXO Lao people going about their dangerous work in the jungles and rivers along the Ho Chi Minh Trail today.
I also talked about the POW and MIA issue in Laos, and my visits to some notorious and remote areas in Laos where POWs were reportedly held long after the war had ended.
It seemed to go down well.
See the trailer for our new film, M.I.A. A Greater Evil. Set in the jungles of Laos and Vietnam, the film deals with the possible fate of US servicemen left behind after the US pulled out of the Vietnam War.
For POWs left behind in Laos, see also:
© Peter Alan Lloyd
BACK Parts 1 and 2:
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