Episode 2361 – Four more Vietnam War US snipers highlighted

Vietnam War Top Snipers

Vietnam War Top Snipers Adelbert Waldron, Charles “Chuck” Mawhinney, Eric England and Carlos Hathcock.

Episode 2361 of the Vietnam Veteran News Podcast will feature a story about four exceptional American snipers from the Vietnam War. The featured story comes from The War History Online website and is titled: The Vietnam War Featured Four Exceptional American Snipers. The story was submitted by Guest Author Todd Neikirk.

Back in Episode 256 of this Podcast, Steve Suttles, an exceptional Marine sniper who served in the Vietnam War was featured. He served as a sniper with the 5th Marines in Vietnam. During his time in country, he was credited with 63 official kills. Steve will say that what is important to him is how many American lives he saved. Today Steve is retired and living the good life in eastern Oklahoma.

The featured story in this episode highlights four other outstanding Vietnam War US snipers. They are Adelbert Waldron, Charles “Chuck” Mawhinney, Eric England and Carlos Hathcock.

Waldron served with B Company, 3rd Battalion, 60th Infantry Regiment, 9th Infantry Division. In just eight months running PBR boats along the Mekong Delta, Waldron had 109 confirmed kills. In one instance, he hit a target some 900 feet away while in a moving boat.

Mawhinney trained at Camp Pendleton‘s Scout Sniper School and was soon sent to South Vietnam. He served with a number of sniper units in different battalions, and was immediately successful. During his 16 months in Vietnam, he was credited with 103 confirmed kills and 216 probable kills.

England served as a sniper with the 3rd Marine Division, and during his seven months in the country had 98 confirmed kills, with many more unconfirmed.

Hathcock was a prodigious sniper, known for successfully making difficult shots. One, in particular, saw him shoot opposing sniper “Cobra” through their scope. On another occasion, he crawled over 1,500 yards through a field to snipe an NVA general. The North Vietnamese put a $30,000 bounty on his head,

Listen to episode 2361 and discover more about five exceptional American snipers from the Vietnam War.

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Episode 2430 – The Kennedy Withdrawal

The Kennedy Withdrawal

The Kennedy Withdrawal

Episode 2430 of the Vietnam Veteran News Podcast will feature a visit by Andy Pham, a good friend of this podcast. He has invited three prominent college professors to join him in a discussion of an important new book about the genesis of the American participation in the Vietnam War. The book deals with little know facts surrounding President Kennedy’s decisions about the conflict.

The book to be discussed in this episode of titled: The Kennedy Withdrawal. It was written by Dr. Marc J. Selverstone. The book provides a major revision of our understanding of JFK’s commitment to Vietnam, revealing that his administration’s plan to withdraw was a political device, the effect of which was to manage public opinion while preserving US military assistance.

Dr. Marc Selverstone is an associate professor in Presidential Studies at the Miller Center and chair of the Center’s Presidential Recordings Program. He earned a BA degree in philosophy from Trinity College (CT), a master’s degree in international affairs from Columbia University, and a PhD in history from Ohio University. A historian of the Cold War, he is the author of Constructing the Monolith: The United States, Great Britain, and International Communism, 1945-1950 (Harvard), which won the Stuart L. Bernath Book Prize from the Society for Historians of American Foreign Relations.

Another of the Professors is Meredith H. Lair. Prof. Lair’s work examines warfare and its relationship to American society and culture, with particular emphasis on how knowledge and memories of the past are constructed and disseminated over time. She is the author of Armed with Abundance: Consumerism and Soldiering in the Vietnam War, which examines the non-combat experiences of American soldiers in Vietnam.

The other interlocutor is Dr. Sean McLaughlin of Murray State University.  He is the special collections and exhibits director at Murray State University. He is the author of JFK and de Gaulle: How America and France Failed in Vietnam, 1961-1963 (University Press of Kentucky, 2019). 

Listen to episode 2430  and get the full interview with three notable college professors who examine the book The Kennedy Withdrawal.

Recommended Reading

The Kennedy Withdrawal

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Episode 2024 – Mark Farner – Rock Icon, Man of God and Vietnam Veteran fan unloads

Legendary rock icon and Vietnam Vet fan, Mark Farner.

Legendary rock icon and Vietnam Vet fan, Mark Farner.

Episode 2024 of the Vietnam Veteran News Podcast will feature an interview with long time rock icon Mark Farner.

According to David Fricke of the Rolling Stone Magazine, “You can’t talk about rock in the 70s without talking about Grand Funk Railroad.”

Mark Farner is the reason why. As one of the founding members, lead singer, lead guitarist, and writer of 90% of the Grand Funk music, Farner has always been known as the energetic driving force on stage, the engine that pulled the original Grand Funk Railroad to the top of the charts.

His story and his imprint on music starts at Flint, Michigan and since 1969 from his humble beginnings and a blue-collar outlook, Farner is leading a global crusade for love and freedom and became a rock ‘n’ roll icon. He still to this day commands the stage with the same intensity performing epic hits that defined a generation –“I’m Your Captain (Closer to Home)”, “Bad Time”, “Some Kind of Wonderful”, “Foot Stompin’ Music”, “Heartbreaker”, “Locomotion”, “Mean Mistreater”and “We’re An American Band.”

Today,Farner is still going strong. At a young 72, he is also about as real as they get.He is a husband,a father and grandfather and in his fourth decade of marriage to wife Lesia. He is a family man, a man of God and a strong supporter of veterans and especially Vietnam Veterans.

In this episode Farner will talk about his performance of  “I’m Your Captain” at the 25th Anniversary of the Vietnam Memorial Wall and other topics including his “From Chile With Love” DVD project that is designed to provide financial aid to needy veterans.

For every “From Chile With Love” DVD sold Mark and his wife Lesia plan to donate $3.00 to the Veterans Support Foundation (VSF) towards the VSF transitional housing for homeless veterans.

CLICK HERE for a quick and easy way to purchase your copy of Mark’s “From Chile With Love” DVD. It is a win – win situation because not only will you be getting some great entertainment by Mark and his American Band but also you will be helping our veterans.https://markfarner.com/store/

Listen to episode 2024 and discover more about Mark Farner and his thoughts on music, Vietnam Veterans and life.

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Episode 2171 – Taiwan – China’s Vietnam

Taiwan military in action

Taiwan military in action

Episode 2171 of the Vietnam Veteran News Podcast will feature a story about how Taiwan could become China’s Vietnam. The featured story appeared on the U.S. Sun website and is titled: OPERATION Z-DAY How China could sleepwalk into its ‘own Vietnam War’ with Taiwan invasion as it faces kill zones and 500,000 fighters. The story was submitted by Tariq Tahir. He works out of London, United Kingdom as a foreign news reporter for the Sun Online. He holds a Master’s Degree from the University of Edinburgh in politics and history.

In his story Tahir puts the spotlight on the current situation with China and Taiwan. He points out that China still considers Taiwan to be a part of China.

It seems when Mao Zedong and his gang of communist murderers took over China in 1949, they were unsuccessful in bringing the island of Taiwan into the communist paradise of the People’s Republic of China (PRC).

Ever since, the Austronesian-speaking ancestors of Taiwanese indigenous peoples settled the island around 6,000 years ago, they have fought to maintain their independence.

China has been saber rattling and making noises that indicate their intentions of taking over Taiwan by hook or crook or war or peace.

Tahir’s story indicates, the Chinese would encounter a difficult situation if they elected to invade the island. He started his story with this: “On paper China’s military dwarfs that of Taiwan but a closer look reveals how kill zone beaches, hostile terrain and a 500,000 strong guerrilla army could inflict a Vietnam War-style humiliation on Beijing.”

He continued with this revelation: “If Chinese forces do manage to make it ashore they Chinese troops who make it ashore would face roughly 175,000 highly trained full-time soldiers.”

There are also 500,000 fully trained reservists ready to resist any attempt at occupation, using bunkers honeycombing the hills as cover from which to attack the invaders.

Taiwan recently unveiled a radical overhaul of its defense strategy that sees its troops switching from conventional tactics to guerrilla warfare.”

Listen to episode 2171 and discover more about how Taiwan could become China’s Vietnam.

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Episode 2429 – Interview with renowned author Evyn Lê Espiritu Gandhi

Evyn Lê Espiritu Gandhi with book about Vietnamese refugees in Guam and Israel.

Evyn Lê Espiritu Gandhi with book about Vietnamese refugees in Guam and Israel.

Episode 2429 of the Vietnam Veteran News Podcast will feature an interview with UCLA professor Evyn Lê Espiritu Gandhi where the talks about her latest book Archipelago of Resettlement that tells about South Vietnamese escaping to Guam and Israel-Palestine after the fall of Saigon.

Evyn Lê Espiritu Gandhi is an assistant professor of Asian American Studies at the University of California, Los Angeles, and the author of Archipelago of Resettlement: Vietnamese Refugee Settlers and Decolonization across Guam and Israel-Palestine (University of California Press, 2022). She of currently working on a new book project tentatively titled “Revisiting the Southern Question: South Korea, South Vietnam, and the U.S. South.”

In the interview Professor Gandhi reveals from April to November 1975, the US military processed over 112,000 Vietnamese refugees on the unincorporated territory of Guam; from 1977 to 1979, the State of Israel granted asylum and citizenship to 366 non-Jewish Vietnamese refugees. Evyn Lê Espiritu Gandhi analyzes these two cases to theorize what she calls the refugee settler condition: the fraught positionality of refugee subjects whose resettlement in a settler colonial state is predicated n the unjust dispossession  of and indigenous population.

Lisa Yoneyama, author of Cold War Ruins says this about Archipelago of Resettlement: “This strikingly original study demonstrates ways of knowing and connective otherwise – within, across and beyond incommensurable structural divides and multiple belongings. Deeply inspiring, Gandhi’ archipelagic methodology elucidates compelling political possibilities for decolonial futures.”

It is written about her book: “Considering distinct yet overlapping modalities of refugee and indigenous displacement, Gandhi offers tools for imagining emergent forms of decolonial solidarity between refugee settlers and indigenous peoples.”

Listen to Episode 2429 and get the full interview with UCLA Professor Evyn Lê Espiritu Gandhi where she talks about her latest book Archipelago of Resettlement that tells about South Vietnamese escaping to Guam and Israel-Palestine after the fall of Saigon.

Recommended Reading

Archipelago of Resettlement

Buy Now

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Episode 2165 – Vietnam Vet John Shoemaker – a great American

John Shoemaker, a great American

John Shoemaker, a great American

Episode 2165 of the Vietnam Veteran News Podcast will feature a story about Vietnam Veteran John Shoemaker and his contributions to his country. The featured story comes from the Redstone Rocket in Huntsville, Alabama and is titled: Ex-infantry platoon leader satisfies need for adventure. It was submitted by Skip Vaughn, the Rocket editor [skip.vaughn@theredstonerocket.com].

Vaughn’s story is the 339th in a series of articles about Vietnam veterans in the Rocket as the United States commemorates the 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War.

Vaughn’s story about Vietnam Vet John Shoemaker is an excellent description of a great American. Shoemaker made numerous contributions to the podcast in the past and you are highly encouraged to listen to those episodes where he told his stories.

John Shoemaker is another one of those outstanding representatives of the great Vietnam Veteran Generation. During a time of widespread opposition to the War in Vietnam during the late 1960s, upon graduation from college he volunteered to join the Army with the intent of becoming an Army infantry platoon leader.

He realized his goal in March of 1970 when he was assigned as  a platoon leader with 3rd Platoon, B Company, 2nd Battalion, 1st Infantry, 196th Light Infantry Brigade, Americal Division in I Corps, the northern sector of South Vietnam.

He said: “I thought I can be a small unit commander that can save American Soldier lives. That was my focus. That was my goal.”

Commenting on his time in Vietnam Shoemaker opined this: “I feel the time I spent in combat was the greatest experience in my life. It proved who I am. It changed who I was and it created the person I would be for the rest of my life. And specifically, I would say what I got out of it was that it certainly gave me discipline and maturity. It established firm confidence in my abilities. And it also created a person who was action oriented. I do embrace adventure.”

Listen to episode 2165 and discover more about Vietnam Veteran John Shoemaker and his contributions to our country.

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1757 – Vietnam Vet John Shoemaker – Ghosts Soldiers

Ghost soldiers

Ghost soldiers

Episode 1757 of the Vietnam Veteran News Podcast will feature a spine tingling story from Vietnam Veteran, John Shoemaker. In the summer of 1970 he served as the third platoon leader of B Company, 2nd Battalion, 1st Infantry, 196th Infantry Brigade, Americal Division. The events he describes in his story occurred at Kham Duc, South Vietnam during Operation Elk Canyon. On August 8, a column he wrote about the action titled: “Ghosts of war” appeared in the Metro West Daily News of Framingham, Massachusetts and he refers to it in his presentation on this episode.

John verified by his actions at Kham Duc that he is outstanding representative of the great Vietnam Veteran Generation, one as great as any that ever heeded the call of duty from its country.

He begins his story with a review of the original Battle of Kham Duc that occurred two years before. That battle is not very well known because it took place in the direct aftermath of the Tet Offensive and the siege of Khe Sanh.

The NVA decided to make a statement at Kham Duc to make up for the debacles they suffered at Khe Sanh and the Tet Offensive. Their intention was to decisively defeat the Americans.

The decision was made by the American leadership to abandon the fire base rather than suffer more casualties. The war weary country would not be happy if that happened at an isolated fire base in the middle of nowhere in the outback of South Vietnam.

Two years later the 2nd Battalion of the 1st Infantry, 196th Infantry Brigade was sent back to Kham Duc as part of Operation Elk Canyon. John Shoemaker was a part of the returning taskforce. He talks about what he and his platoon experienced and the “ghost soldiers” on the other side.

Listen to episode 1757 and discover more about John Shoemaker’s Ghosts of War.

The Airborne OCS website features many of John’s Vietnam War columns.

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1753 – Vietnam Vet John Shoemaker tells it as it happened

Fighting in Vietnam

Fighting in Vietnam

Episode 1753 will feature the background story of Vietnam Veteran, John Shoemaker. He served as an infantry platoon leader with the 196th Infantry Brigade in Vietnam. He was in country during 1970 and 1971.

John is an outstanding representative of the great Vietnam Veteran Generation, one as great as any that ever heeded the call of duty from its country. The members of that generation served their country in Vietnam where they faced very challenging circumstances in an effort to stem the rising tide of communism primarily in Southeast Asia.

They came home to an unfriendly reception from an ungrateful nation that offered very little gratitude to the veterans for their service. Despite the disgraceful way they were treated upon their return, the vast majority of them continued serving their country in a wide array of pursuits both in the military and the civilian side.

When they came home they were older, wiser, stronger and wiser than their non-Vietnam veterans. This enabled them to be valuable assets to their communities and country. They have proven this over the past fifty years. All that is necessary to see that is to take a look at their accomplishments.

John Shoemaker epitomizes the greatness of that generation. In this episode John will tell in his own words about what motivated him to join the Army after his graduation from the University of Massachusetts. He entered the Army at the height of the anti-war turmoil that was literally tearing the country apart.

He describes what drove him to join the Army and choose the most dangerous branch which was the ground pounding Infantry. He goes on to tell about the unusual events that led up to his entry into Officers Candidate School.

He then lays out the background to the incredible situation his platoon ran into at Kham Duc and the miraculous outcome. Don’t miss the next episode where he will tell the exciting story.

Listen to episode 1753 and discover more about the background of Vietnam Veteran John Shoemaker.

The Airborne OCS website features many of John’s Vietnam War columns.

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1751 – Memorial Day brought the smell of death to this Vietnam Vet

John Shoemaker smelling death

John Shoemaker smelling death

Episode 1751 of the Vietnam Veteran News Podcast will feature a story that appeared in the Metro West Daily News of Framingham, Massachusetts. It was titled: Opinion Column: What is that smell in the air? It was submitted by John Shoemaker.

He is a Vietnam Veteran who served in Vietnam during 1970 and 1971. He was an infantry platoon leader and company commander in the 196th Infantry Brigade while it was a part of the Americal Division in I Corps of South Vietnam. Shoemaker “walked the walk and talked the talk” in Vietnam so he knows what he is talking about in his guest editorial.

His column began with this editorial statement: “Hard to believe that America has been attacked by a hidden enemy that has killed more Americans in 100 days than were killed in the Vietnam War over a decade.”

In this column Shoemaker described his experiences as a platoon leader in realistic detail that included the terrible loss of some of his team members and the taking of enemy lives.

He was so affected by his experiences in combat with its death and destruction, on every Memorial Day the smell of death comes back to haunt him. The Memorial Day of 2020 is different for Shoemaker. He stated this about the current year: “This year in 2020, the smell of death is everywhere for me. I think of all those loved ones who were ambushed by a secret enemy called the coronavirus, especially for those 70 veterans cut down in a Holyoke, Massachusetts, soldier’s home.”

John Shoemaker is another one of those tremendous representatives of the great Vietnam Veteran Generation, one as great as any that ever heeded the call of duty from its country.

Listen to episode 1751 and discover more about the smells that are evoked by Memorial Day for a Vietnam Veteran.

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1758 – Vietnam Vet John Shoemaker – His continuing service to country

Vietnam Vet John Shoemaker

Vietnam Vet John Shoemaker

Episode 1758 of the Vietnam Veteran News Podcast will feature a presentation by Vietnam Veteran, John Shoemaker about what he has done after he left the military and service in Vietnam. He was assigned to the 196th Infantry Brigade of the Americal Division and served in Vietnam in 1970 and 71.  He has written numerous columns about his time in the War that appeared in the Metro West Daily News of Framingham, Massachusetts.

It is the contention of this podcaster that the Vietnam Veteran Generation is as great as any that ever heeded the call of duty from its country. Despite an unfriendly reception from their country when they returned home, they rose about all the bad things that were said about them. They were not all drug crazed maniacs who lived under bridges because they could not cope with society.

All the vituperation that was heaped upon Vietnam Veteran has proven to be false and inaccurate. When Vietnam Veterans came home from the War, they were older, wiser, stronger and better able to deal with adversity than their non-Vietnam Veteran contemporaries.

Over the last fifty years they have shown they are an outstanding group of veterans. They have excelled in a wide array of civilian and military pursuits.

John Shoemaker is a tremendous representative of that great generation. In this episode he will describe in his own words how he has contributed greatly to his country after his service in Vietnam.

He begins by describing what motivated him to join the Army and become an infantry officer at the height of the War. Infantry officers served in some of the most dangerous jobs.

He then goes on to describe how he rose to the top levels of the electronics industry.

Listen to episode 1758 and discover more about John Shoemaker’s contributions to his country as a civilian.

The Airborne OCS website features many of John’s Vietnam War columns.

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