The Myth of the Vietnam War
Ho Chi Minh trail. Wide-brimmed hats. Hardworking and cheerful people. Miniature ladies are carrying on small rocker arms a weight of about two times more than they weigh themselves. And pigs are fed bananas here so that the meat tastes better. And a few myths about the attempt of a full-scale US military invasion in 1964-1965.
First, a little about the personnel of the US armed forces. Contrary to the prevailing stereotype about the conscription of 19-year-old boys, the average American soldier in Vietnam was 23 years old. As an example for comparison, the average age of a soldier during the Second World War is 26 years. Also, contrary to the common myth, most of the US military in Vietnam were volunteers.
The myth of the so-called “black syphilis” is quite popular. Of course, the Marines and representatives of the US military units did not have high moral standards, but this myth does not hold water. Due to the lack of documentary evidence of the existence of such a disease during the Vietnamese campaign,the myth rests solely on the stories of eyewitnesses and participants in the events. It was believed that those infected with this unusual form of syphilis were secretly transported to a remote island or the so-called floating hospital in the territory of the Philippines or the Japanese Okinawa. The American military doctors themselves contributed to a considerable extent to the spread of this myth in order to protect American soldiers from promiscuous sexual contact in a specific way.
Well, as a cherry on the cake. The Americans quite seriously admitted that the Viet Cong shoot down their helicopters with the help of special-purpose crossbows and extraordinary power. According to rumors, the Vietcong had a training camp in which they fired from such crossbows at a model of an airplane tied with ropes. Of course, such a fantastic version is untenable because of the extremely low effectiveness of such weapons, not to mention common sense.