After the launch of the Tet Offensive campaign on January 30, 1968, in South Vietnam, a series of battles were fought between the southern Army of the Republic of Vietnam (ARVN) and the Northern People’s Army of Vietnam (PAVN). Among Olson's extraordinary photos: A wounded Marine  in agony, wrapped in a blanket, whispering the Lord's Prayer as his life slips away and another wounded Marine stands guard. Though U.S. and South Vietnamese forces managed to hold off the attacks, news coverage of the massive offensive shocked the A… Walter Cronkite, America's most trusted newsman, went to Hue, the longest and bloodiest battle of Tet. The attack, which came to be known as the Tet Offensive, became a major turning point in the war, setting … The last total, reported yesterday, said 30,795 Communists had been killed compared to 3,149 Allied soldiers, including 973 Americans. "Many think we're hurting real bad right now," said one Marine during the battle. ", "I don't think it could have gotten any closer," he said. Elsewhere they fought house-to-house for South Vietnam's third largest city, Hue. Grantham said, "I'm hoping that the public can embrace the war now and they can learn exactly what happened and what went on, and that we had many, many, many heroes that didn't come back with us from over there alive.". Correspondent David Martin with photographer John Olson, at the Newseum exhibition, "The Marines and Tet. It was one the largest and most important battles of the long Vietnamese war. Background. The first article that was insightful of the time before the Tet Offensive came from a newspaper called The Tuscalossa News in August 5, 1964 which is a day after a big attack on American Navy by the North Vietnamese. The Tet offensive raged from the mud of the Mekong Delta in the south to the leech-infested, booby-trapped hills of the north in South Vietnam. He led an assault on a tower the enemy was using to shoot down upon American troops. "It was a totally new combat experience for all these men," said Olson. Grimy U.S. marines held back and watched as the government troops stormed the palace against light resistance. And I remember somebody saying, 'This one's not dead yet,' and lo and behold, they got me out and I made it.". "They had zipped me up into a body bag. One wounded Marine stands guard over another. Phase 2: May 5 – June 15, 1968. Artifact 'Stars and Stripes' Reports on Tet Offensive, 1968 The newspaper's Pacific edition describes how U.S. troops successfully defended the embassy in Saigon and reports communist troops took heavy loses. This is the New Tet Offensive, similar to what happened during the 1968 Vietnamese Tet Offensive attacks when, under orders of the North Vietnamese government, five South Vietnamese cities, dozens of military installations, and small towns and villages across South Vietnam were attacked simultaneously from all sides. The war has a way of rearing its ugly head from time to time. "What I see when I look at that photo today are seven 18-, 19-, 20-year-old kids badly wounded," he said. "No great new overall moves are going to be made," he said, but cautioned: "Anything can happen on a moment's notice.". Fifty years after Tet, the Marine on the tank says it's time to see that war more clearly. The Tet offensive was, by any standard, a military de feat of massive proportions for the North Vietnamese and the Vietcong. Ten-thousand North Vietnamese and Viet Cong had seized Hue at the outset of the Tet Offensive, and the Marines were sent in to claw it back. © 2018 CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved. But the leathernecks and other allied troops sweeping through the two-mile-square Forbidden City surrounding the palace fought a series of fierce battles with pockets of Viet Cong and North Vietnamese troops. About 85,000 Viet … "Tried to hide back into society and just fade away, you know, and just be like everybody else and live a nice, normal life," he told Martin. A.B. None of the Marines on the tank were identified, and that was fine with Grantham, who didn't want people to know he had been to hell and back. The Vietnam War still rears its ugly head, but Grantham is hiding no longer. CHICAGO, Feb. 8, 1968 (UPI) -- In his strongest attack yet on President Johnson's Vietnam policies, Kennedy said "it is time for the truth - time to drop the mask of official illusion" which he said had been shattered by Communist attacks in Saigon and cities and towns all across South Vietnam. '", John Olson, then a 20-year-old Army photographer, described one of the images in this exhibit, of the first 12 men that went up the tower: "And within 30 seconds, five of them were critically injured.". Copyright © 2020 CBS Interactive Inc.All rights reserved. About 85,000 Viet Cong and North Vietnamese army fighters rushed across the border to attack over 100 cities and towns in southern Vietnam in an attempt to break a stalemate in the war. The Tet Offensive was a turning point in the Vietnam War, but one that irreparably poisoned American public opinion on U.S. involvement and ushered in the steady drawdown of American combat troops. This article goes by the title of Bipartisan Support Due to Action of Viet Nam. "But it didn't last. Grantham. We begin this morning in Vietnam, with the Tet Offensive, which began 50 … 1968 was a year like no other, and throughout this year "Sunday Morning" will be taking occasional looks back. During the fall of 1967, the question of whether the U.S. strategy of attrition was working in South Vietnam weighed heavily on the minds of the American public and the administration of President Lyndon B. Johnson. Battle of Hue During the TeT Offensive - Vietnam 1968. The attack by North Vietnamese army and Viet Cong guerrilla forces in South Vietnam known as the Tet Offensive began fifty years ago on January 30th, 1968. By the end of January 1968 the American people thought their armed forces were winning in South Vietnam after three years of escalating conflict. But in Vietnam, the anniversary of this moment in history, leading up to the Tet … For those who are unfamiliar with the term, Tet is Vietnam’s New Year and there was to be a cease fire during the week of Tet. On February 27th 1968, with the Tet Offensive a month old, US news anchor Walter Cronkite appeared on television and delivered an editorial claiming that the Vietnam War was “mired in stalemate”: “Tonight, back in more familiar surroundings in New York, we’d like to sum up our findings in Vietnam, an analysis that must be speculative, personal, subjective. For 29 of the past 50 years, he has been in therapy, and doesn't go anywhere without his service dog, Bo. SAIGON, Feb. 24, 1968 (UPI) - South Vietnamese troops blasted through a gate of the imperial palace today and won the 25-day battle for Hue. Map indicating towns and cities in which significant fighting occurred during the Tet Offensive of 1968. During the Tet Offensive, provincial capitals, villages, and military bases in the U.S.-supported Republic of South Vietnam were overrun. Home » News » 1968 Tet Offensive. The Tet Offensive left similar memories for anyone who was “in country” on January 31, 1968. Association for Diplomatic Studies and Training. A week later, on Feb. 25, Gen. William C. Westmoreland, commander of United States forces, compared the Tet offensive to the Battle of the Bulge … And as far as 1st Platoon, they lost a lot of people.". "We lost 2nd Platoon. Diplomatic History (“Viet Cong Invade American Embassy” — The 1968 Tet Offensive)." Amen. By Roger Durham, Army Heritage Museum January … "It's painful to look at.". Why did the enemy commit so much to this assault? "I remember it well," said Grantham, now 68 years old, of having come as close to death as it is possible to come. If we got to die on this tower let us die like men and Marines and don't embarrass ourselves, our families or the Marine Corps. The shirtless figure -- an 18-year-old Marine shot through the chest -- is a symbol of American innocence shredded by the reality of Vietnam. "Moments in U.S. Michaeal Ceranic, a history major at Rosemont College in Pennsylvania, is writing his senior thesis on the 1968 Battle of Hue during the Tet Offensive. SAIGON, Feb. 6, 1968 (UPI) - Guerrillas leapfrogged from the flaming streets of Chinatown back into the center of Saigon today. The May Offensive was considered much bloodier than the initial phase of the Tet Offensive. Once you learn something, it's hard to unlearn it. Then came Tet. Tet offensive were over reacting and speaking prema turely before the returns were in “We unquestionably su... Tet offensive, both in psychological and physical terms* A By and large, the ‘other war' impact of the Tet... Tet offensive sprang largely from a combination of optimum surprise and meticulous preplanning. A North Vietnamese regiment numbers up to 1,200 men. The panel will explore the twelve-month period when the Viet Cong and their North Vietnamese allies embarked on a new and more aggressive strategy that shook the foundations of South Vietnam and forced the United States to reevaluate its military … Americans, wounded during the Battle of Hue, being transported on a tank. TET OFFENSIVE On Jan. 30, 1968, the Vietnam War escalated as enemy forces launched surprise attacks during the country's New Year holiday. SAIGON, Feb. 12, 1968 (UPI) - U.S. military headquarters announced today it would no longer issue casualty tolls on the invasion of the cities because the figures are "no longer meaningful," since urban warfare has died down. It was 2:45 a.m., on Jan. 30, 1968—the day Vietnam celebrated the lunar new year—when Viet Cong troops raced through a three … Bob Thoms leads his Marines during the Tet Offensive. Later, a chaplain administers last rites. ... Lebanon Daily News Friday, April 05, 1968, Lebanon, ... in that war. Bob Thoms, wounded six times but still alive today. The Vietnam War: Tet Offensive. Grantham was diagnosed with severe and chronic PTSD. "It was what we call a sucking chest wound -- hit the breast bone, went through the right side and exited under my shoulder blade," he said. Two-hundred-and … Phase 3: August 9 – September 23, 1968. "The bleeding wasn't the main problem to begin with; it was the breathing," Grantham said. Then the North Vietnamese People’s Army of Vietnam (NVA) and Viet Cong struck back against the forces of the South Vietnamese Army of the Republic of Vietnam (ARVN), the US Armed Forces and their allies, hitting military and … U.S. radar picked up a convoy heading toward the ancient imperial city from mountain sanctuaries to the southwest and artillery was called in to knock it out. "This was our prayer: 'God, we know we are about to see you in person. Part of the Vietnam War. He has published three books on presidential politics and international affairs as well as many articles on television news and Vietnam. Get even more great free content! "If there's anything close to Hell, it had to be Hue," said Sgt. "Everybody held hands," he recalled. We begin this morning in Vietnam, with the Tet Offensive, which began 50 years ago this coming Tuesday. Phase 1: January 31 – March 28, 1968. Date. The Tet Offensive 50 years ago - co-ordinated attacks by 67,000 guerillas and North Vietnamese troops, taking advantage of the lunar New Year holiday and truce - caught the Americans off guard. "I couldn't breathe because I had a hole in my chest. David Martin has the story of the conflict in one frontline city: The 26-day battle for Hue was fought street by street, house by house, room by room. Dr. Erik B. Villard and a panel will discuss the Tet offensive and Villard’s book, Combat Operations: Staying the Course, September 1967–October 1968. Furthermore, Tet was so influential that CBS’ anchorman Walter Cronkite even travelled to Vietnam for two weeks in order to join the camera crews and report on the fighting live.The competing news channels all eager to capture this revolutionary footage meant that the Tet offensive dominated the media, covering all news channels and newspapers; it was impossible to miss. 1968: Americans alarmed by 'Tet Offensive' The American command in Vietnam has reported over 5,000 people dead after two days intensive fighting. "If you had to choose the most important event of the Vietnam War it certainly would be the Tet Offensive; it changed how people looked at the war and doing so it changed the war itself," Cronkite said on a CBS News special report, broadcast on February 27, 1968. About the Tet Offensive. His name is A.B. In late January 1968 the VC launched the Tet Offensive attacking U.S. and South Vietnamese positions across South Vietnam.. Saigon was the main focal point of the offensive, but a total takeover of the capital was not intended or feasible. Sự kiện Tết Mậu Thân. Sgt. WASHINGTON, Feb. 2, 1968 (UPI) - President Johnson Friday termed the Viet Cong attacks on major South Vietnamese cities "a complete failure" militarily and said they would force no change in American troop levels or basic war strategy. Olson's photos are now on exhibit at the Newseum in Washington, D.C., to mark the 50th anniversary of the Tet Offensive. Articles Related to 1968 Tet Offensive. With correspondent David Martin. Nothing delivered that message more vividly than Olson's photo of wounded Marines being carried out of Hue on a tank. In early 1968 U.S. Marines fought for nearly a month in Hue, Vietnam. The Tet Offensive was a coordinated series of North Vietnamese attacks on more than 100 cities and outposts in South Vietnam. During the early morning hours of January 31, 1968, Viet Cong and North Vietnamese forces launched surprise assaults on nearly all of the provincial capitals and urban areas of the Republic of Vietnam in an effort to bring about the collapse of the South Vietnamese government. Wall Street Journal, 3 Nov. 1981. He'd come back to tell the public the war could not be won: "It seems now more certain than ever that the bloody experience of Vietnam is to end in a stalemate," Cronkite said. Grantham examines a photo of himself, wounded, in a photo at the Newseum exhibition, "The Marines and Tet." Search news, photos and videos on Army.mil. Student Looking for Battle of Hue Marines. Planes bombing Viet Cong as Saigon fight rages, Allied planes, tanks and troops today drove fleeing guerillas into the suburbs at Saigon, U.S. says 30,795 Communists killed in Vietnam city battles. 1968: The Tet Offensive The month-long battle for Hue, in Vietnam, was fought street by street, house by house, room by room. They were wiped out. "They'd never been in house-to-house fighting before.". 1968 was a year like no other, and throughout this year "Sunday Morning" will be taking occasional looks back. Location. April 18, 2018. Explore our Vietnam War digital newspaper archives collection that covers more than 400 years of history, assisting thousands of genealogists and history researchers on their hunt for valuable information. General William Westmoreland, the commander of the Military Assistance Command, Vietn… SAIGON, Feb. 24, 1968 (UPI) - South Vietnamese troops blasted through a gate of the imperial palace today and won the 25-day battle for Hue. 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