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Post My Memories of Tonkin Incident
Created by John Eipper on 07/24/19 4:29 AM

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My Memories of Tonkin Incident (Timothy Brown, USA, 07/24/19 4:29 am)

John E asked about the rumors circulating among the US forces in the Pacific in the wake of the Kennedy assassination. Regardless of what US forces may have thought, when in doubt the rule was, and still should be, pray for the best but prepare for the worst. Which is what they did immediately after Kennedy's assassination.

On Tonkin: During my Marine Corps tour at CINCPAC/FMFPAC (1959-64), I was primarily engaged in matters in or about elsewhere in Southeast Asia--Thailand, Laos, Myin Mar (Burma) Cambodia, Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines.  However, it was not unusual for me to hear of instances in which both North and South Vietnamese military engaged in operations inside the other side's territory.

I was on a Foreign Service tour as District Senior Advisor in Ninh Hoa, Khan Hoa, Vietnam, with "opcon" (operational control) just after the Tet offensive. Chapters 22-26 in Diplomarine are about my experiences during that assignment.

Being a Latinamericanista, I was then and later, fascinated by the operational connections between Vietnam and Latin America, such as the photo of Salvadoran FSLN being trained in Hanoi, later conversations with senior Cuban officers who later defected to the US on their personal experiences in North Vietnam as advisors to the North Vietnamese military during that war.

JE comments:  Tim, I'm presently away from the WAIS library (at Mom's in Delaware for the week), but need to re-read those chapters of Diplomarine.  Do I remember correctly that you served as a liaison with a Korean combat unit?  (I just learned that over 5000 Koreans died in the Vietnam war, from 1964-1973.)

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