American Patriotism In Vietnam

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Patriotism has many definitions. The dictionary says that it is love and support of one’s country. But patriotism means more than what is just in the dictionary. Someone in America might associate it with freedom and democracy, while someone in Vietnam might associate it with loyalty to Communist principles. However, all definitions follow the same thread: loyalty to one’s country. Patriots are people who fight for their country, through words or through actions. The sense of American patriotism has been reinforced with each war, and the American people have tried to spread that patriotism when they could. What Americans failed to realize in the Vietnam War was that patriotism is not a strictly American ideal: loyalty to one’s country does …show more content…
Dang Vu Hiep describes his experience fighting as a Viet Cong general. He left his wife and three children to defend his country against American GIs trying to destroy the Communist government. He recalls that he spent ten years in the Central Highlands of Vietnam, teaching his soldiers “to destroy the enemy and we made no distinction between South Vietnamese and U.S. troops. We considered them both enemies” (Appy, 10). Hiep’s patriotism is clear in his dedication to protecting his country. Viet Cong guerilla fighter Tran Thi Gung joined the North Vietnamese troops following her father’s murder to “do something to liberate my country and help people get enough food and clothing. I believed my mission in life was to continue my father’s cause, so in 1963, when I was seventeen, I joined the guerrillas” (Appy, 16). The only woman in her unit, Gung showed her patriotism through fighting for the people of her country. Her concern for the welfare of her people and her country reveals her patriotic spirit. Though these Vietnamese fighters weren’t fighting for American ideals, they still embody the patriotism of supporting and fighting for the wellbeing of their …show more content…
America engaged in the Vietnam War and needed soldiers to fight in it, regardless of whether or not they personally supported it. Oliver Stone taught English in Vietnam before serving as a soldier. He worked in the front lines in Vietnam, saving his own men and civilians whenever he could. He did not personally support the war, observing “Even though war brings out the worst behavior in every man, there is a moral place. We were destined to lose because this war had no moral purpose and was fought without an moral integrity” (Appy, 256). His patriotism took the form of fighting for his country regardless of his personal beliefs. Green Beret captain Roger Donlon risked his life and exhibited incredible courage during an attack on his army base.He tried to lead his men and save his injured soldiers, like Pop Alamo, who “was pretty severely wounded and I tried to get him out of a mortar pit. As I carried him out we were blasted back into the pit… when I came to, I found that Pop had died in my arms” (Appy, 15). He is a true patriot, risking his life for his country and for his people. CONCLUDING SENTENCE

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