tv [untitled] RT August 16, 2010 8:30pm-9:00pm EDT
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shoots for goal in its bid to host the two thousand and eighteen world cup as it feeds delegation it begins inspecting potential venues across the country. five years after the removal of israeli settlers from gaza and in violence thousands of jews in the west bank fear they're also about to be forced out as a part of a possible government peace deal with palestinians. a summer of extremes after two months of a record heat wave and devastating wildfires russia now braces itself for hurricane force winds which have already hit st petersburg and the northwest of the country. coming up next we look back in history and ask what were american and vietnamese soldiers dying for thirty five years ago in southeast asia. southern vietnam province klavan forte was a u.s. marine in the one nine hundred sixty s. against vietnamese communist guerrillas today for mob boss or is recall the time
when they could only look at one another through the cross as we got better and better at it but still never as good as the be at the meads that camouflage about hiding. using the jungle for their advantage the course of the war shifted when the soviet union sent anti-aircraft missile systems and military specialists to vietnam in his first action targeting us aircraft nicholai kolesnik brought down for obama's. first treats the told was an exploded then the second and the third i can still picture these glowing skies that many of the local fighters trained by soviet missile specialists later rose to the highest ranks of the vietnamese army we were so good at disguising soviet missiles with tree branches that american pilots could see nothing but thick forest that one did fifty eight thousand u.s. army servicemen and over a million vietnamese soldiers during fall how have the wars veterans fed sins. now
think about thirty five years old. hanoi the capital of vietnam six am morning exercises in the city's main square the mostly in the center is the resting place of the vietnamese communist leader who team in the movement for the country's independence the vietnamese managed to oust their french colonizers but the united states was seriously concerned with a new state of mind in line with communists and they were willing to use force to prevent that from happening. i signed up to join the military because i thought that it was my duty i thought that it was something that i could do to help my country i believed my government that it was necessary for americans to come to vietnam to help to fight. but
now he lives in vietnam south with his girlfriend he first came here with a u.s. marine unit not long after his eighteenth birthday now only a few faded photos with his friends remind him of that period in his life. this was my best friend. his name was richard. this would have been about one nine hundred sixty seven. by the one nine hundred sixty s. vietnam had been divided into two parts with the border with the seventeenth parallel communists led by control of the north washington back politicians were of the helm in the south at its peak in the late sixty's the us supported them with more than half a million troops. thinks the most realistic portrait of the war is francis ford coppola's film apocalypse now.
vietnam us troops stop short of nothing in a bid to achieve their objectives. they burned the jungles of hideouts the vietnamese. but they also used a chemical weapon called agent orange to smoke them to the fullest. i just assumed that my government was right and that we needed to be here but after a few months in the country i started to change my mind and i started to doubt that we were doing a good job. but i couldn't do anything about it i still. couldn't just leave. the mccomb river delta new trees. destroyed the forest nearly forty years ago. but the chemical weapon has had a sting effect on the people. in many villages there are many with.
these people. but the effects were passed to them genetically many years after their parents happened to be in the zone. these children live in a special village near hanoi they are under the constant care of doctors and psychologists . visits her parents during the holidays. at primary school. to play with friends. to be a doctor when she grows up so that she can treat children with. chemical weapons. many are still hard to diagnose american and vietnamese soldiers civilians felt the effects of agent orange in one thousand nine hundred.
and she died when she was six months old. and one of the first questions dr asked me was. so they knew. the facts. but they still spray all over the country side all over the country. and only nine hundred sixty five. the u.s.s. off a military aid. around the same time defense units hold massive training exercises. cruise around constantly. in the defense force during the exercises he heard rumors about defense units
getting ready to go to a far away country to take part in. it before was sent to vietnam we get strict orders not to tell anybody we're going to distant places we weren't even told what that place was. the missile system was to be tested for the first time in history in vietnam in military conditions. had a crew. i know this launches into the last i felt it's all over and checked at times. the first soviet rocket specialists came to vietnam in april one nine hundred sixty five here they were officially called military advisors they organized a crash course training the vietnamese to comprehend teams did their work. and.
the vietnamese were generally not very tall rather short actually. it was hard for them to load the rocket launcher around. so when one of us was enough to load the launcher two or three vietnamese had to do it. no. it was one of vietnamese colleagues he served in the army throughout the war when he was discharged from the vietnamese air defense force he held the rank of major general today he's a frequent visitor to today's ed offense units he tells young servicemen how vietnamese fighters learned to handle soviet rockets the hard way and how they use the rocket systems in real life fighting it. at first they thought a launcher crew will take eight months to learn the system. towns are being bombed so we had to hurry. we learned the makeup of the hardware down to the last bolt in a matter of two and a half months. at the vietnamese army is still equipped with soviet military
hardware and it's still in working order despite its advanced age engraved inscriptions in russian a kept intact as a sign of respect but but you know. most of the units of vietnamese army included men from small villages where people had never even seen so much as a simple radio set but still they quickly learned the a.b.c. defense and even invented some tactical tricks of their own. for example they camouflaged bulky soviet anti-aircraft missile systems so
effectively that even that soviet instructors took home some valuable lessons. learned to become a fire soviet rockets was. the place for them as usual it was near the high trees after the come a flash great. american pilots must have thought it was sick for. more time films give an idea of what soviet rockets in vietnamese camouflage looked like command posts as well as launches were disguised. we see general. entering a makeshift command post it was from here that he controlled rocket launches twenty five of them hit the american bombers. while the rocket specialist spent a good deal of time trying to figure out american tactics that american pilots drop metal paper from their aircraft to distort radar pictures. and we did learn to tell genuine targets from fake once.
the very first battle in which soviet anti-aircraft missile systems took part was crammed with success they pulled down three american aircraft. music tree came less than a month later three rockets destroyed four bombers and long ago. kolesnik was in command of the launch of that brought them down. we see all three rockets exploding one after another there is a flip each time the best of the sky is a glare the american planes fall to pieces and glide to the ground like smoldering pieces of wood. lead soviet and vietnamese servicemen manning rocket launches
destroyed a total of more than eight hundred u.s. aircraft and helicopters during the war afterwards fragments gathered from across the country were taken to vietnam's capital hanoi today they are exhibits at the national museum of the armed forces it centerpiece is a giant created from the twisted components of downed bombers. you.
each year nikolai kolesnik the former commander of a crew of soviet rocket specialists visits a restaurant in moscow to meet with vietnamese war veterans. they marked the anniversary of his crew's first victory. after that battle a table was laid for soviet specialists but the menu was far more modest. the food was somewhat exotic with never even anything like that before it tasted and looked like nothing we knew was so we often ask the vietnamese to tell us about the food we were eating. the russians from vietnamese soldiers in the field will pull however they received additional supplies from local peasants air defense units were normally stationed close to villages. chante gum
is ninety five years old both of her sons were guerrillas they lost their lives fighting in what was then south vietnam. she joined fellow villages in the north to help the launch a crew who took part in the first battle. i remember exactly how it happened. the acrobats wings fell to the ground on the house next to mine later we went there to see the remains. today there is a thick jungle where joint soviet vietnamese crews forebear first battle there's no trace left. of the rocket systems camouflaged with tree leaves which were once stationed here through. soviet specialist guided rockets towards their targets as we looked. we were overjoyed to know that all the targets had been here and that was our first victory.
as pilots had to change their tactics assumes soviet anti aircraft missile systems . in an attempt to evade soviet rockets they had to fly into low well since you. made them easy prey for the vietnamese women who served us and. you have. different emotional turns in the process making. mission accomplished and by the time you return to base. you are totally exhausted and probably. pilots pete peterson was downed over north vietnam in september one thousand nine hundred sixty six he returned home after seven years in captivity nearly a quarter of
a century later after official relations between the two states were finally restored peterson became the first us ambassador to vietnam today he lives with more than just memories of the. probably somewhere back. somewhere. at least in my memory. the truth lies in the center of the capital. there is a monument among its banks with the names of american pilots who were shot down among them is united states senator john mccain written in vietnamese. one of those who took part of the mccain prisoner patrol. on july twenty ninth one thousand nine hundred sixty seven he was on duty near the lake. plane right there.
and headed for the parachute by boat. this picture shows members of a vietnamese militia units lifting mccain out of the lake the john lewis among them . dragged him ashore. that i couldn't understand how he felt. a knife in my belt his face showed that he was. john mccain mistakenly thought that he would be killed instead he was immediately given first aid. he spoke in an interview for french television from his hospital ward.
he served most of his term in this prison. it's housed in a colonial era building today it's a museum but in the one nine hundred sixty s. imprisoned u.s. pilots jokingly called the prison the hanoi hilton. during the war captain chang was the jail's warden. his job was ideological work with inmates including john mccain. who had strongly held beliefs. mccain never agreed that american policy in vietnam was wrong but i had my own opinion he was a republican i was a communist the americans tried to establish their order the but we fought for freedom. five and a half years later john mccain returned to the usa and continued to serve in the navy. but as
a presidential candidate in two thousand and eight he used rhetoric that not knowing his background might have even being considered pacifist america is the greatest force for good in the history of the world my friends we have gone to all four corners of the earth and shed american blood in defense usually of somebody else's freedom and our own so we are peacemakers and we're peacekeepers. evidence of war crimes against vietnamese civilians started coming out while john mccain was still serving his prison sentence. a horrific massacre took place in the rural community of my lai in one hundred sixty eight villages was suspected of helping the guerrillas will than four hundred people were murdered in a matter of hours. reports concerning fast and other episodes critically undermined the morale the among us troops stationed in vietnam. there was
a lot of drug use there was a lot of murder of american officers by american soldiers there were a lot of units who refuse orders to go out and buy they said no we're not going to fight. in the united states meanwhile the movement against the war in vietnam was gathering steam. there were mass protests antiwar rallies and the famed march on the pentagon organized by peace activists. later many vietnam war veterans joined the protests themselves former fighters would drop the medals they'd been awarded in vietnam in front of the u.s. congress. before the war i always thought i wanted to win a lot of medals i wanted to have a lot of decorations but afterwards i realized that they don't mean anything
they're not that important. i don't i don't i never kept the medal i never. i never did anything about it. coochie is a district twenty kilometers from hoochie minh city formerly known as saigon x. marine great play ven. a form of vietnamese guerilla. nearly forty years ago they were bits of advice or is fighting each other below them lie two hundred fifty kilometers of underground tunnels vietnamese guerrillas would dig them around the clock covering over the fresh earth and disguising numerous entrances to caves . going down there i don't want to try. for even if the entrance to a tunnel was discovered it was hardly possible for most american soldiers to get inside but vietnamese guerrillas were able to crawl through even with rifles in
their hands they would vanish into thin air after taking several shots from a camouflaged dug out. during a raid made by vietnamese guerrillas in the jungle a bullet fired by a sharpshooter narrowly missed greg klavan. on the one hand the jungle was very beautiful very exciting to watch to be in but on the other hand it was very frightening knowing that any time the enemy could attack the freedom fighters got the medicine and weapons from north vietnam there was a whole system of secret supply routes locals called it the home team in trail american forces bonded effectually. with the help of the vietnamese peasants the guerrillas how to restore the trail constantly.
the traces which led to the jungle routes were fully hidden to misguide the enemy. each time we were on the. tracks with a tree branch. december one thousand nine hundred seventy two the americans make a last ditch attempt to force north vietnam to surrender. operation linebacker to soften launches ten people more strikes since the second. in two weeks of continuous raids u.s. aircraft movement twenty thousand tons of explosives on towns in north vietnam. that combined power much thought of the atom bomb dropped on hiroshima in one thousand four hundred five. just absolutely normal it's explosions and. devastation caused by back to the same time i think it also
persuaded. that. it was time. to. that diplomatic story. the city of hanoi the wreckage of one of thirty u.s. b. fifty two bombers is still buried in a lake here the consequences of the military operation called linebacker two soon after that the u.s. troops started to leave vietnam. mean often brings his grandchildren here when the war was over he served in the vietnamese army for a further twenty years retiring as a general now he writes his memoirs about how his battalion took part in resisting the last american air raid. that happened right here. because her lawyer was subjected to very heavy bombardment. and the wreckage of this aircraft is
a good illustration of the defeat suffered by the united states here. unlike his vietnamese counterpart sergeant nicholai kolesnik decided against continuing his military career. after his return from vietnam nicholai left the armed forces to become an electrical engineer but he meets several times a year with his comrades in arms who served with him in vietnam. the former u.s. marine greg plains and return to vietnam in one nine hundred eighty six he makes a living by giving private english lessons when he left vietnam off to being wounded in the war it never occurred to him that some day he might come back let alone share a table with vietnamese guerrillas so coming back and seeing. developing people. getting jobs and going to school he didn't normal life made me feel better that we
didn't completely destroy all of the. things that we did you consider what we've gone through i wish that the people of the united states the people of vietnam and all nations always live in peace and understanding. since the end of five years ago many things in vietnam have changed in some can expected ways. one of the buildings of the jail with us in nicknamed the hanoi hilton is now indeed a moat and the hotel. the u.s. flag is often seen side by side with the vietnamese flag on the facades of joint ventures college undergraduates domes to modern pop music near a monument to soviet leader lending. but one thing remains the same.
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