251. I served with the US Army in 1966-67 as an engineer officer with the 4th Infantry Division, primarily in Qui Nhon and Pleiku. In 1969-70 I was with the 18th Engineer Brigade in Chu Lai and Phu Bai. In November and December 1998, I was privileged to spend three weeks in Vietnam on vacation, with other US veterans of that war. It is such an incredibly beautiful country that it is hard to describe to those who have not been there. I'm working on a book, Return of the Warriors, about my experiences there and those of my companions on the 1998 trip...we had not known one another previously, since we had been in different units and in Vietnam at different times. Some were with the 4th Infantry and others with the 25th Infantry Division. It appears that your website is quite lengthy, so it will be some time before I get through it all but I have enjoyed the several pages I read in different parts of it. (Robert Reilly).
252. The page is really nice, I told my father about your page and he will visit it tonight. I am a history buff of sorts. Your page enlightened me on the details surrounding the events in South Vietnam during those hard years. It is a shame that my country did not have the political willpower to match the military commitment they had made in Southeast Asia. I pray, that some day, when I am visiting the 'Wall' in Washington D.C. (which I do whenever I can) that I run into one of those politicians who refused to give our troops the 'go ahead' and resolve to win and do honor to the people of South Vietnam instead of leaving them in a lurch... I shall give them a piece of my mind. I count it as a dark day in our history, the day of the final flight from Saigon in 1975. Much like the 'Trail of Tears'.... or waiting so long before getting involved in World War II. (Almost "Too" long eh). I should like it very much that the United States would somehow do something to make up in part for that shameful exit and for the lack of execution of a winning plan in Vietnam. I should like to visit Vietnam someday... as its been part of my psyche, naturally, since I was a young child. I grew up in the 60's, wondering why so many of the kids here were so reluctant to 'do their duty' and serve with our forces over there. I still do not condone the draft dodgers, but I at least now understand the fact that our military and the SVA were never given a chance. So, though I would like to go... I worry sometimes that the people, when they see me... will they blame me? Or, do they suppose it is time to 'get on with it' so to speak and make the best out of our mutual future? Generally, I'm in favor in free trade, and renewing contacts there, but are you concerned that the people that will prosper will be the same Communists of old? Tin, I am so impressed by the story of your brother. I'm constructing a new web page on history and politics... and I wonder if you would mind if I put a link to your page on it. I have a few Vietnamese friends at work. Most were small children when they fled there, and they do not have much to say about it. (Michael Burlison)/
253. I likely did meet your brother briefly during that time, as I was 4th Division Engineer Liaison Officer in Qui Nhon. However, I was a captain, thus did not socialize with general officers. I do remember meeting him at a staff briefing of some sort. Certainly spellbinding. My recollection is that he was observing, listening, with only a question or two to offer for clarification. (Robert Reilly).
254. Thank you for the wonderful insight to General Hieu. His leadership,
patriotism and professional skill are traits we should all emulate. I knew him
briefly in 1962-63 when I was the battalion advisor (Capt) to VN Captain Vo Huu
Hanh, the CO of the 20th Ranger Bn--under operational control of the 22d
Division, commanded by Col Tri. I believe Capt Hanh was a 1951 graduate of the
VNMA at Dalat. (I was USMA class of 1952). I was also in Gen Hieu's area in
1966-67 when I was Bn XO (Maj) of 2-28 Inf, 1st US Infantry Div, in Lai Khe. My
third tour in 1970, I was CO, (Lt Col) 1-14th Inf, 4th US Infantry Div.
255. I thank you for the invite to the updated page. I know of the general. He was one of the few who was respected by the US military general staff in Vietnam. The man fought and was not afraid to fight. What saddens me is that he fought for a government that did not deserve him...(Tony Ciccariello).
256. I visited the Links Page and saw that all ten links reserved to our
competent General Nguyen Van Hieu a special spot. I thank God and the Virgin
Mary for rewarding somehow a man I had said should replace former President Ngo
Dinh Diem, for that man should be a competent and virtuous general like Generals
Nguyen Van Hieu, Nguyen Duc Thang, etc... so that Vietnam has a president whose
entire live is dedicated to the military like the 34th president of the United
States, Dwight Davis Eisenhower. I recall having read long time ago a book that
recounted that when General Eisenhower was appointed supreme commander of the
battle-front in Europe, he only took along with him a Bible.
257. I have read about your brother's death. I am sorry. He sounded like a good man. I take it that no autopsy was performed. I noticed that no one mentioned seeing a gun cleaning kit or even a rag for cleaning a gun on his desk. Was there in fact a bullet retrieved from the ceiling? That would indicate a self inflicted wound. Was your brother a Catholic? Being raised a Catholic myself I know that suicide was considered a sin. A semi-automatic pistol with a hair trigger might be the blame. Sometimes an over familiarity with a weapon can lead to careless behavior. Without knowing the gun, how recently fired, the exact placement of the fatal round, no autopsy etc. it is almost impossible to determine cause of death. You would have to exhume the body and after all these years that probably would be a waste of time and a desecration. What ever happened to Gen. Toan? (James Bruno).
258. I read your brothers website and it was impressive. By the way, you DO write very well. What a wonderful way to honor his memory!!! (Karen Korthe).
259. Visited your site today (Sat 5 Aug), the Coach vs. Quarterback analogy is apt. Phu & Truong were Good division commanders, but not suited for the Corps level. Others even less gifted would include Luong (Abn), Thuan, even worse Minh (your friend), Loc, & Lam. Yes, promotions include a certain amount of politics, but when promotions are based entirely on politics, not competency, your military is in deep trouble! (Adam Sadowski).
260. I don't mind at all that you have put my comments in the blurb of your book. I am just happy that I could be just a bit of a help in making Gen. Hieu better known to an American public. It is something of an honor also. Also, whenever I can, I will dust off my laid-aside Gen. Hieu folder and see if I can add to the explosive notes I have already taken on Gen. Hieu's comparison with Gen. George S. Patton, Jr. Your book deserves attention. (James Miguez).
261. I toured your pages this afternoon at length, and found much of great interest there. I am so glad you told the story of General Hieu. As a combat infantryman I was out in the field most of the time, and my impression of the Vietnamese generals...and many of our own as well, was one of corruption. I am so glad to hear of this fine man, and of your pride for him. You do him honor, and because of this site, I honor him also. I was with the 1st Air Cavalry at Phan Thiet...LZ Betty...but out humping your countryside we called the park most of the time. (Gary Jacobson).
262. Thanks for your beautiful site. I know you put alot of hard work into it. Thanks for all the information. Keep up the great work. God Bless You Always...(Marie).
263. I found your last two posts (of Ambassador Bunker and Mr. Granger) excellent and to the point. Both of them giving the reader first hand documents of the US intelligence analysis of the Vietnam situation. Your last post on the situation in Vietnam in March perhaps should have been the "situation in April" for the NSC document is dated April 5, 1975 just a few days before your brother's mysterious death. Not only does this document give pertinent information on troop strength, morale, tactics, etc., but it also shows Gen Toan's thinking at the time of this crucial event. It also shows his "profane" attitude toward politics and war. Was it Gen. Hieu and Vice President Huong he was cursing?
Perhaps if Mr. Granger, the author of this NSC document is still alive, you could quiz him on whether or not he talked to Gen. Hieu and as to what were Gen. Hieu's view on the subject. It seems that Generals Hieu and Toan did get into an argument over tactics and Gen. Hieu was murdered. (James Miguez).
264. Thus the letter is dated only three days before your brothers death--and Gen. Toan is still talking about helicopters--for crying out loud--when a task force of tanks are heading straight for Saigon via the nearest highway. To me this shows how completely ignorant the upper brass of ARVN were--with the exception of your brother--of to what the real battlefront priorities were.
It strikes me as odd that a plane of the South Vietnamese air force should leave Bien Hoa on the morning of the 8th to strike at the Presidential Palace; while a short time later a defeated general of Ban Me Thout, now the new chief of staff of III Corps should show up at Gen. Hieu's headquarters with a contingent of II Corps soldiers in tow to drive away the MPs who regularly guarded Gen Hieu and the Headquarters. And it is not too much later the Gen. Hieu is found shot to death in his Deputy Commander's and driven away quickly in total darkness by his commander, Gen. Toan, a man who was once a subject of Gen Hieu's investigation into military corruption. There is something fishy here, not to mention the unscientific character of the autopsy and police investigation. What can one say? (James Miguez).
265. To pay tribute to a general who was honest and competent is to be commended. Those who were involved in the death of general Hieu should clear up the matter so that history doesn't carry along a dirty trace forever and so that justice is redeemed, especially so that one doesn't go down to one's grave with a heavy conscience. Wish you much success. (Do Hung).
266. I just read your article "My brother's death". Your observations as noted in it are similar to the ones of those who followed and understood the events of that time. As regarding to the Freedom of Information, I don't think they would reveal anything yet because those involved in this matter are still alive. I will refer General Hieu's Page to all my friends. (Tran Trong Thuong).
267. I was able to read the web-site book announcement. I think you ought to mention somewhere in the press release the point made by the review. Actually two points: 1) American readers, and maybe even many Vietnamese-Americans, know very little about the people the U.S. fought with, and what is known tends to be unflattering; 2) This book not only gives us insight into the South Vietnamese perspective and performance, but it also tells us about a South Vietnamese officer who was extraordinary both for his leadership and his integrity. It might sound obvious to you, but sometimes you have to emphasize the obvious for those who are more distant from the story and the issues. (Jay Tolson).
268. I have spent an hour or so going through many of the documents on your website for your brother Gen. Hieu and found it fascinating history of a man and his times. Congratulations on your project and your devotion to preserving the memory of your brother. (Joe Galloway).
269. I got to your web site and was very impressed by it. I am sorry that my memory of events 25 years ago is not better. General Hieu was obviously a great soldier who put his country and his people foremost. It was a tragic ending for him and I can understand your determination to insure that his memory is honored as a true patriot of South Vietnam. (Fred C. Weyand, General, U.S. Army (retired).
270. I was happy to see your last post taken from Gen. Weyand. It was downright informative. The U.S. Congress and especially the Democrats played a good part in setting up the debacle of '75. My article on Hieu and Patton will be written soon I believe. Also, I have some ideas for an historical novel, concerning you brother, Vietnam, and the American experience. Have you ever thought of such a project? (James Miguez).
271. I spent a few hours tonight reading the information on your site. What an wonderful tribute to a great and honorable man! I am the Web Site Administrator for Bravo Troop, 1st Squadron, 9th Cav, All Years. I am currently constructing my Links page and would appreciate your permission to add a link to your site. I sincerely honor you for what you are doing with your web site. The American Veterans say, "It's about time!".....I feel it is for you, too. Thank you for sharing the truth of honor. (Loretta Stager, California).
272. I finished the book on General Hieu and found it very interesting. Having served in 3 Corps and being deeply involved in Vietnamization I was reminded of the challenges involved in that area. The author provides insights and background which are both interesting and helpful. My own suspicion is that General Hieu was not assassinated by his fellow officers but murdered by the NVA prior the final offensive in 3 Corps. It is a legitimate military objective to remove the command structure of an opponent. The NVA with no Air Force and limited Artillery used assassination to great effect throughout the war. I do agree that there was an attempt at a cover-up. It is a significant loss of face to have such poor security at a headquarters that your two star gets whacked right under your nose. Additionally, I suspect that it was an inside job assisted by traitors within the ARVN. These traitors and spies are also always part of any military operation and the NVA and VC were exceptionally good at infiltration. Who these people were and at what level in the HQ they were operating is anybody's guess. That General Hieu was assassinated for exposing corruption is in my opinion doubtful. By April 1975 the ill gotten money was probably already out of the country. Had it occurred earlier I would be more inclined to agree. Finally you can't discount the idea that he accidentally shot himself. I damn near did the same thing while cleaning my pistol in 1969. I failed to insure the gun wasn't loaded, pointed it at a wall and pulled the trigger. BOOM...big hole in the wall and much cursing from those on the other side, who I fortunately missed. The infantry armor tandem is too long to discuss here, but the use of foot soldiers and cavalry together is militarily as old as horses and men. I thought it interesting when I heard a report that 60% of the population in Viet Nam was born after the war. The whole experience is rapidly becoming abject history for all except the participants. The story of General Hieu is a good one and the book contributes effectively to the history of the Viet Nam war. (Thomas F. Marcotte).
273. I stumbled across your site, and I am so enthralled with your fervor to bring circumstances of your brother's life to light.. Thank you so much for the information and the historical context in which it is presented. For many of us Vietnam ended after our tour were completed. Not so, for the brothers in arms we left in Vietnam. May General Hieu and his spirit live forever in the halls of Military History and in the heart of us warriors. (James Weber, 101st Airborne RVN 1967-68).
274. I know it's not fair to judge from a single incident (or two, actually). The fact is that the one time a large ARVN force was available to help us when we needed help they didn't come out. I have and had no way of knowing how many men we lost because the ARVN's wouldn't come out of their compound, but I know my battalion took at least 20 casualties during that day and a half (that's one platoon). That they didn't come to help us also allowed a large NVA force to enter Hue and reinforce the enemy already there. How many Marines died as a result is anyone's guess. I guess it must have happened at some time but I have never heard of an American force sitting by while an ARVN force was being shot up only a mile away. No one wants to die, but we were willing to die for them, and did. All I know is that I would not be alive today if an enemy took over my country, I would have died with a gun in my hand, and still might. I guess that's politically incorrect nowadays but I guess I'm just old fashioned. My sincere respect to a fellow warrior however. Meant to also say that it looks like this General really loved his country. I'm sure that if he was commanding that ARVN force they would have come out to help us. (Larry L. 5/7 1st. Cav '68)
275. Your site is very interesting...what you have created is really quite unique.. there is not much on the web from the perspective of former ARVIN. (Prof. Steven Leibo, Sage Colleges).
276. I have visited your site and found it to be very interesting. There is not a great deal of information available in English regarding the Army of the Republic of Vietnam and therefore I appreciate the opportunity to direct my readers to your site. (Mike Ruffle, Grunt!).
277. I thoroughly enjoyed your website. I was impressed by the fact that your brother was such a devout Catholic and that he was proud of his baptismal name and signed his official documents as such. I am a Catholic and I love the people of Vietnam. I feel that our country let your brother down. I also realize we caused him some consternation, as most of our senior officers thought they knew it all. If only we would have come into your country with a little more humility, and would have listened more. That all said, I must compliment you on your website. It is fantastic. Thank you for informing the world about your brother. I hope his family has done well and found peace here in the United States. (John McCoy Webmaster, Bravo Black Lions).
278. My father is very interested in your book "Major General Nguyen Van Hieu, ARVN". He has read some of the extracts from the book on the internet and found it most interesting. He would like to know if this book is available in Vietnamese and where he could mail order it from (we live in Sydney Australia). (Jennifer).
279. I just entered your General Hieu's Page and found in there numerous additional information and many valuable articles. You are to be congratulated for your efforts. On top of that, you have published an entire book in English so that the American readers understand the value and the combat spirit of the ARVN, of the generals, among whom is Major General Hieu. Your efforts ought to be honored. (Pham Phong Dinh).
280. Just a few words to tell you how much I appreciated the tribute you have rendered to your brother in dedicating this site to him. He appeared an excellent general and an excellent catholic. Il is unfortunate that men of his caliber were not more numerous in Vietnam in the years 60-70. History would have been different. (Pierre-Gabriel Messier).
281. Everyone is familiar with Gen. George S Patton, Jr., old blood and guts, the swashbuckling, winningest general in World War II, who has been the subject of a critically-acclaimed major motion picture; yet few people are familiar with his quiet counterpart in Southeast Asia, Gen. Nguyen Van Hieu, the Vietnamese patriot and unsung hero of the ARVN. These two capable military officers--one widely known and the other neglected, just as one was brash and the other reserved--seem to be as far apart in style of leadership as one can possibly imagine. Here East and West never meet. Yet upon close examination, these officers are found to be so very much alike in the conduct of their general commands. Indeed the similarities between the two soldiers are striking--so much so that the case can be made that Gen. Hieu must have read Patton's book, studied it, and taken it to heart.
Topic of comparison (Patton's book page):
George S. Patton, Jr. War as I Knew It: The Battle Memoirs of "Blood 'N Guts, Annotated by Colonel Paul D. Harkins, (Bantam Books: 1980).
Patton possessed an encyclopedic knowledge of the history of battles, an exceedingly thorough understanding of the ways and thoughts of the enemy, and a masterful comprehension of the roadways and terrain--ancient and modern--on which the army campaign was to sweep.
Hieu was quite in deliberation yet decisive in execution, a master of maps and briefings yet thoroughly tactical in the field, communicative with allies, comprehensive on the larger plan yet good with details, and possessing a technological edge.
Both came from backgrounds that were rich in history and culture.
In some ways Hieu was more spiritual--while Patton achieved his glory and fame on earth--the unsung hero of the ARVN will perhaps yet gain his luster in heaven when the final battle will take place between good and evil. Here the weapons will be different, the outcome of the battle sure. No more losses, or wounded, and gone will be the dying cries of men and the bitter betrayals of friends turned enemy. In this war of perfect strategy held from on high and flawless tactics below, the trumpet will sound. Out into the field shall come St. Michael and all his glorious cohorts, the all-around commander Nguyen Van Hieu included; orders will be given, dispatched, executed, and with a shout of force the forces of evil shall fall before the mighty power of Him we call Lord. Victory! Victory! Victory! shall be ours at last! Happiness shall flow! Quickly souls of the just prevail and the poor inherit the earth. Now the slaves are set free; and the hungry fed. Charity reigns. Nothing more needs to be said, then, as silently we see when our hearts are pure. May the soul of the brave Lt. Gen. Nguyen Van Hieu, untiring soldier and fearless patriot of Vietnam, faithful son as he is, incorruptible in life and death, eternally rest in peace. Amen. (James Miguez).
282. Maybe if South Vietnam won the war and brought prosperity to the population, it would jeopardize the American plan of getting close to Communist China. It might be well possible that the CIA had General Hieu killed because he was able and virtuous and would have been able to do something in those dark days of 1975? As you well know, in his Decent Interval book, Frank Snepp named Dang Van Quang and Tran Thien Khiem as informants of the CIA. It's sad that generals with strong patriotic character had died, and those incompetent generals became big shots then escaped to the United States to enjoy a tranquil retirement. I recommend that you read "Politics of Heroin" to research more about the evil actions of the incompetent trio Quang-Khiem-Toan. (Pham Kim).
283. We have not corresponded for a considerable time. Since I approached you for information regarding Vietnamese names for brothers, fathers and so forth, I now have 38 Chapters finished in my book. It is due for publication later this year. My work is historical fiction. However, its main characters have a basis in fact, only names are changed. I am in dire need of an ARVN hero. I plan to use the life of your honorable and honest general as the profile for my ARVN hero unless you have objections. Surely, you do not. I have enjoyed your site and the wonderful information found on it. It has provided me with an in depth understanding of ARVN organizational structure, unit identifications and much, much more. Thank you for the significant information provided. The site is the best I have found during my research. (Carle "Gene" Dunn).
284. It seems that you have spent a lot of time researching the general's life, and the comments from your readers seem quite positive. When the time comes, I hope that you consider placing your collection at the Vietnam Archive. As Dr. Reckner described, it is projects such as yours that will influence future historians' views of the Second Indochina War. (Major Dave Toczek, West Point).
285. I fought with General Hieu when I was in the First Cavalry Division in 1967 and 1968. I commanded a platoon of CH-47 helicopters and I remember this Eagle Claw battle well and the coordination with Vietnamese and Korean units. We fought on The Bong Son Plain and into the An Lao Valley. I am greatly disappointed that I never met General Hieu. The First Cavalry Commander I knew very well. When he commanded the Army Aviation Center at Fort Rucker Alabama, I arranged and taught class on aerial artillery adjustment which General Tolson asked me to prepare. When he and then Colonel Putnam went to Viet Nam, they asked that I go with them. This Universe is a big place but it is small enough that I served beside such a hero. (Carle "Gene" Dunn, LTC, retired).
286. I did get to meet MG Hieu in 1972. I was in charge of the MACV I Corps message center in Danang. We were located next to his headquarters. He was an impressive man. (Lee, MACV Advisory Team 1, Danang 1972).
287. I have read with fascination the homepage of Lieutenant General Nguyen Van Hieu created by you. This homepage is really beautiful et full of documents. Thank you for rendering alive the epic life of Lieutenant General Hieu, one of the elite officers of the Army of the Republic of Vietnam that I only came to know after the loss of our country. The Geneva Agreement of 1954 was signed when I had not started going to school yet. My father retired from the Army in 1955. General Do Cao Tri (who was Major at that time) told my father that he knew the Viet Cong would not leave the South alone. They would find the way to gobble up the entire South. Therefore when I started to grow up was when the South began the struggle of self-defense against the invading North Communists. I thank you again for honoring the combatants of the Republic of Vietnam. (Dung)
288. I came across your website, I would like to say that you have done a wonderful job in glorifying your brother and making his name live. This email is about a list of arvn soldiers. Is there a list of arvn soldiers that fought and or died in vietnam between 1965-1975???? I would like to see a complete list. I am looking for my grandfather. I would like to know the complete status of his service to arvn. When he died and how he died. Is there a such list?...if so can you give me the url or info on it. (Kevin Nguyen).
289. I was just been directed to the photo page of General Hieu, your brother, by somebody unknown (or rather just known) by the name of Ken Bui. The page is really exquisite, I have seen all the photos of General Hieu once and yet they still stir up deep emotions in me! I write you this letter to thank you for letting the public know about General Hieu, an ARVN combatant who possessed talents, virtue, but suffered an unfortunate destiny. May General Hieu be with God. (Le My Dung).
290. It is only to this day that I got the news from uncle Hieu's family. I told my parents about this news. My father told me that he did receive a report of the Military Security, but things weren't clear at all and he mentioned one detail that I don't know if you are aware of or not since you haven't touched upon it: a little moment before uncle Hieu's death, a female soldier entered his office. You ought to pay attention to this fact. My father said there were 3 factors: 1 is the communists, 2 is Thieu, 3 is the CIA. I was very touched by your articles. I have relayed your web site to my relatives. My father served with uncle Hieu in the 1st Corps and 2nd Corps. He had to undergo re-education for almost 13 years, and is now in poor health. His last position was deputy chief of staff of personnel at the JGS. (Loan).
291. I have continued my research and I have found more evidence as to your brother's greatness and as to comparisons in military history. One such instance was Major General Richard Taylor, son of US president Zachary Taylor (and hero of the Mexican War). Gen. Taylor was a literary type (similar to your brother) who was also learned in the history of war. Confederate Gen. Taylor was instrumental in the success of Gen. Stonewall Jackson's Shenandoah campaign in 1862, much in the way that your brother, Gen. Hieu, was behind the credit other generals received in the Vietnam war. There is certainly nothing new in this phenomenon of "underwriter" generals.
There are other comparisons that could be made to enliven the story of your brother and to bring out his true place in military history. I have not the time to put them all down. Gen. Taylor was also denied victories, as he put it, by "bureaucratic" officers under whose command the army languished. There is no doubt that Gen. Hieu was to be found in the ranks of Gen. Robert E. Lee, Gen. Stonewall Jackson, Gen. Richard Taylor, and Gen. George S. Patton, Jr. Incidentally, George Patton's grandfather was killed in the Battle of Winchester in the Shenendoah campaign, the very same campaign Gen. Taylor helped Gen. Jackson to win! (James Miguez).
292. I did not know the General, but still found Gen. Hieu's page very interesting and informative. I will return to it again to read it with even more care. Though those days are passed they still effect our daily lives... ... as an American I came to care very deeply for Viet-Nam, and made many friends there. I spent most of my 18 months and 18 day ..more around the ARVN and civilians than Americans... so made more Vietnamese friends there in Vietnam...than most Americans. I was only a Spc-4... equal to a Corporal...but with a little more authority, and being far from my CO(Commanding Officer) as a Target Acquisition Specialist I had a lot of freedom to see he people in my area( Gio Linh and Camlo Districts). I don't think that a lot of Americans in the larger units really got to know the people in their areas as well and did not understand the situation that both the ARVN and civilians were in. .... Even so I think there were many Americans like me that felt a duty to Both Countries... America...and.. Vietnam... Even with 25 years having passed I still want to know all that I can learn. That is why I am glad to see pages such as General Hieu's informative page. Just as I did not know general Hieu, I do not know you... But appreciate all that the General did ... and your work in presenting the information. Thank You Tin Nguyen! (Carl L. Moore SVN 02APS69 -m 20OCT70 Target Acquisition Specialist-Gio Linh, Camlo Districts ).
293. I served and lived in a peasant village in Vietnam during 1970. The village was about 20 miles southwest of Da Nang. I heard that in March 1971, the Communists wiped out the village, but I can't find out for sure. A few of my American friends were turned away from the area every time they tried to visit. I had many Vietnamese friends living in Phu Da. I have a web site at www.CapVeterans.com that has pictures and maps of Phu Da (Duc Duc). I love your dedication towards your General. Did you serve with him? (My girlfriend is from the Bronx.) (Jack Cunningham).
294. For a long while, I got to visit General Hieu' Page again. If we just glance through this site, we would not notice the big difference between this site and some other sites regarding other men. After reading all the articles concerning General Hieu, I detected many values in Him that all the writers were able to touch upon a few. Taking the articles as a whole, it is a great enterprise depicting a great General. I also see that up to now, he has been given the rank of Major General, Lieutenant General, even General or Marshal, that still seems inadequate. In my opinion, may be a more exact word would be Illustrious General Nguyen Van Hieu. What do you think? I pray that you receive abundant help from the Holy Spirit in order to continue to work on honoring our Illustrious General, a Great Man of his people. (Nguyen Dinh Phuc, Vancouver, BC Canada).
295. I just glanced back at the French and English versions and realized that you have been blessed by God with a strength surpassing yours friends, many of them! I think it was because of the intercession, guidance of your Brother or rather of someone who in life was a General and in death became a Deity. You not only have translated different writings, but also comments, feelings and thoughts of many readers of different backgrounds...and yet were able to reflect closely the idiosyncracies of each writer. That reminds me of the buddhist monk named Duong Tam Tang, who had translated a buddhist book from Chinese characters back into Sanskrit (its original copy had been lost on his return to China) that latter the experts have determined the translation text is not only the closest to the original text but somehow is more beautiful. (Nguyen Dinh Phuc).
296. Your site is doing fine. Nice balance! I have been looking at the Gia Dinh 81/BCND site (dreamwater.com). They have some very good photos of Doan Van Quang Aug 65-Aug 69 CO of the LLDB. Perhaps with permission they'll let you use one. No photos of Lam Son, though. Two times CO of the LLDB Feb -Aug 64 & Aug 69-Jan 70. I was hoping that other readers would have sent you other bios appearing in the Whos Who in Viet Nam series. I sympathize with you over the political heat you must have taken over the corruption articles. I had hoped that others would have sent in articles praising the various generals. I see that you have not been able to reprint the Tran Ba Di article from the NY Times yet. For every Do Cao Tri who got all the press he deserved, there were others like your brother, Tran Ba Di, Doan Van Quang & Lam Son who are little known. I see the growing literature of autobiographies in Vietnamese. Also, web sites for the different units in Vietnamese. Unfortunately, I can read little of them. All my best to your site. (Adam C. Sadowski).
297. Thank you for collating into one place some of the emails I sent to you earlier on Gen. Hieu. I have been meaning to finish the article I promised to you, but circumstances have not allowed. However, I think that I may get to it now, and simply put forward the facts as history shows.
The parallel with the war history of Gen. Taylor is appropriate, for it shows another general who is a literary type as was Hieu, it shows also a recognizable historical figure (son of US President and Gen. Zachary Taylor) who clearly and signally contributed to the success of Gen. Stonewall Jackson, much in the same way that Hieu aided Gen. Do. Also Gen. Taylor wrote a book on his time and experiences in the war, with his appraisal of tactics and strategies, an important book from the victor of the Battle of Winchester that was no doubt read and studied by Gen. Patton.
I also have come across an article on the US war maneuvers in Louisiana before the start of WWII. This took place in my home state and on the very same ground that Gen Taylor won a significant battle in the Red River campaign. It was here that Col. Eisenhower got his recognition for his later appointment as Supreme Allied Commander, and the same war game in which Gen Patton took part.
The importance of this historical fact is that it shows how the American Army picked its generals in an objective way, using the criteria for which, if it had been used by the ARVN in conjunction with Gen. Hieu accomplishments in Vietnam, would have assured him of a top leadership position in the Vietnamese military. All in all, a straightforward historical account will offer an unbiased appraisal of Gen. Hieu place in modern military history. This is why I have decided to include civil war material in my account. Sincerely and with much respect for Gen. Hieu. (James Miguez).
298. I agree that your webpage has the most range of any of the VN sites that I am familiar with: ie. "The suicides of 30 April", "the heroes of ARVN", etc. The VNMC sites is especially good for making you feel that you are there in the action. But, nothing to back up the memories. I am glad to have assisted you in a small way. I also feel good about the fact, that other sites are referring to the Who's Who bios that you made available. That's what I wanted to happen. Old soldier's memories are fine, mine included. But to have the facts to back up these memories make history. Congratulations on your command of French. I know enough Korean, Polish & perhaps Japanese & German to get by. I would never claim to be fluent in any of them. (Adam Sadowski).
299. I have read with emotion et respect your brother the general N.V.Hieu's story on the internet. It's known that it is the best that departed first, always so early. But, in this precise case, concerning General Hieu: a man of honesty, loyalty, humanity and belief...and that is rare nowadays; in a way, it is better that way, for why should he have to deal with this world of unscrupulous men? His place is elsewhere, up high...very high, in the skies. After saying so, it was regrettable for his family (including you, dear sir, you who had done a formidable job; your brother, I am certain, should be proud of you). He deserves better than to live with this world that has a way of life opposite to his, this world, this ungrateful country that were not capable of recognizing the best intention of one of his children, Him, who only asked to serve them effectively and faithfully. They have passed by one of his best elements, one of his sons who is the most gifted and who is the readiest to serve them...
Mon General, may you be happy and well rewarded in heaven. I allow myself to think that your family, despite her sufferings, has received and still will receive a small piece at least, of your posthumous radiance. Your family, having lost a beloved one, who departed without a farewell and left behind lingering doubts, at least will be consoled by the idea that this beloved one departed this world with the conscience of having well fulfilled his duty toward his beloved country. Mon General, for me, your glory is eternal, on the battlefields as well on the "political" terrain. I recognize in you, Mon General, a kind of person that one almost no more can find nowadays. Your exemplary life is similar to one of my relatives to whom I have reserved utmost respects. I greatly wish that men of your quality still and forever exist. Thank you for what you have done for the country, thank you Mon General for existing. I have only one regret which is not having the chance to serve under your command. Farewell Mon General. (A former military cadet of Thu-Duc, 6/68, Long. Paris).
300. The question concerning Gen. Hieu, which is a scholarly question that I am entertaining, is what precise evidence do we have that Gen. Hieu was behind the planning of those military successes in Cambodia, etc. The presentation of the other ARVN generals have been brief, although enlightening. Was there anyone close to Gen. Hieu's reputed masterly understanding of strategies?
If I may say so, your understanding of these questions is certainly greater than mine, in that you have come from the same milieu as the participants of the war, you have direct access to your father's memory and advice, and you probably have countless anecdotes to Gen Hieu memory and actions. Assuredly the bulk of the ARVN generals were corrupt, but as to the actual contribution of the various generals to certain battles and campaigns, unfortunately there is hardly a written record left. Thus it is difficult to perform a more precise explanation of what really took place in the upper ARVN echelons in regard to planning, etc.
Our record of western historical figures is more precise, as there are battle reports and memoirs to fill in the gaps, so to speak. Although one might agree with your assessment of Gen. Hieu, as I do, as it is sound, it is still difficult to form a precise objective judgment as to certain particulars. But for an accurate historical account this is what is needed. This is why I do not rush to write my account unless I am altogether certain--even though I believe that your account of Gen. Hieu and the Vietnam War is basically or fundamentally accurate. (James Miguez).
Section 1: 001 -
Section 1: 001 -