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Women and Children in Vietnam War

16 May 2017Essay Samples

lasted for almost sixteen years brought heavy human and economic losses to both sides. Approximately 3-4 million Vietnamese, 1.5-2 million Lao and Cambodians and 58,000 Americans lost their lives and the curses of the war are still not over.

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Numerous news reports, analysis, memoirs, biographies, white papers, books and novels written about different aspects of the Vietnam War include accounts of the plight of both the American and Vietnamese women and children during the war period. There were American women who served in the army in different capacities. Many of these women were very young, some were sent there against their will while some went as volunteers. For the Vietnamese women and children, however, the war was imposed on them and was forced to suffer and face the consequences.

As a matter of fact no one can expect any good during a war or battle but a devastation of properties and loss of lives and a non-ending lifelong misery for those, who, survived. It was the same case with the Vietnam War where millions of innocent Vietnamese women and children were victimized and brutalized for faults they never committed. Now, more than eighteen years have passed since the war is over, the wounds are yet to be healed.

The worst of all the effects are that of ‘Agent Orange’, a toxic chemical used during the war. Most of the Vietnamese women were seriously affected by Agent Orange contamination and have lost the ability to produce healthy children during their life span. Preliminary statistics show 74,000 disabled children have been born to parents affected by Agent Orange during the war. Till date there are an estimated 3.5 million landmines in Vietnam and more than 2,000 Vietnamese including women and children are injured by unexploded bombs, landmines and artillery shells every year.

According to different statistics approximately 40,000 Vietnamese have been brutally killed by the US forces during the war. The women were raped and tortured and the children were killed by having their throat cut or being slammed against trees. The My Lai massacre in Quang Ngai Province of South Vietnam was extraordinary in the history of war as more than 500 civilian were killed during the attack. Most of those killed were women and children who were at work at the time of attack. Many of them were raped and mutilated.

The incident brought loads of criticism from the US public against the government and pressured the Nixon administration to speed up the withdrawal of forces from Vietnam. A total of 504 helpless human beings were brutally slaughtered at My Lai by soldiers of the United States Army. Most of the victims were old women, young women, old men, boys, girls or babies. There were no young Vietnamese men there. The American soldiers were not confronted by any of those people and they didn’t even find any weapons at spot.

American soldiers displayed feats of brutality by performing hideous deeds like cutting off people’s ears, fingers and heads. They burned whole villages. They poisoned wells. They shot people’s dogs and cattle for fun. American soldiers commonly used to disgrace and rape women and young girls before murdering them. They hit and tortured unarmed civilian people and sometimes used electric shocks to the genitals of both men and women. American soldiers murdered many civilian people in cold blood, usually by shooting or stabbing them. Their favorite entertainment was to push Vietnamese children of high-flying helicopters and watch them fall to their deaths.

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