Team 19 in Vietnam
An Australian Soldier at War
Publication Year: 2013
Historical accounts and memoirs of the Vietnam War often ignore the participation of nations other than Vietnam and the United States. As a result, few Americans realize that several members of the Southeast Asian Treaty Organization (SEATO), including Australia, allied with South Vietnam during the conflict. By the late 1960s, more than eight thousand Australians were deployed in the region or providing support to the forces there.
In Team 19 in Vietnam, David Millie offers an insightful account of his twelve-month tour with the renowned Australian Army Training Team Vietnam in Quang Tri Province -- a crucial tactical site along the demilitarized zone that was North Vietnam's gateway to the south. Drawing from published and unpublished military documents, his personal diary, and the letters he wrote while deployed, Millie introduces readers to the daily routines, actions, and disappointments of a field staff officer. He discusses his interactions with province senior advisor Colonel Harley F. Mooney and Major John Shalikashvili, who would later become chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff. This firsthand narrative vividly demonstrates the importance of the region and the substantial number of forces engaged there.
Few Australian accounts of the Vietnam War exist, and Millie offers a rare glimpse into the year after the Tet offensive, when Presidents Johnson and Nixon both made it clear that the U.S. would withdraw its troops. This important memoir reveals that responsibility for the catastrophe inflicted on Vietnamese civilians is shared by an international community that failed to act effectively in the face of a crisis., reviewing a previous edition or volume
Published by: The University Press of Kentucky
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Title Page, About the Series, Copyright, Dedication
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The western democracies began to use military advisors to impede the militant spread of communism shortly after World War II ended. It wasn’t long after the French departed from Indochina that the ef-fort began in South Vietnam. The United States took the lead, but the Australian Army started to send advisors in the earliest days ...
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The diary of my military service experience in Vietnam laid in my desk for about thirty-five years. As the pages were filled with cryp-tic entries of a controversial conflict, I realized I had a duty aris-ing from my involvement there. This was to present the events in interest. While seeking and sorting the source material, a thematic ...
1. Leaving Home for War
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...“I shall not seek, and I will not accept, the nomination of my party for another term as your President.”1 When I heard the commander in chief of the United States of America, Lyndon B. Johnson, make this announcement on 31 March 1968 I thought: “This is not a good posted to operational service in South Vietnam by the Australian ...
2. The Big Picture
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...ing steadily since well before World War II. Aspirations for self- determination for countries under colonial rule had been pursued and rebuffed after World War I. Vietnamese resistance during the States. A nationalistic alliance within Vietnam evolved after 1945 war against the French concluded in 1954, representatives of the ...
3. Travel to Quang Tri and Orientation
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I spent the weekend prior to my departure for Vietnam in Sydney with Captain Adrian Nesbitt, a classmate in our times together at with the Team from July 1965 to November 1966 in IV Corps. Chat-and harmony to conflict and discord. His sister and her husband were at Sydney Airport to bid me farewell on the evening of 13 May, ...
4. Australian Army Advisors in the Province
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On arrival in Vietnam each member of the Australian Force Vietnam (AFV) received a small card titled “NINE RULES.” The preamble 2. Try to understand the people, their way of life; customs and 5. Don’t attract attention by rude behaviour or larrickinism.16. Avoid separating us from the Vietnamese by a display of great ...
5. Counterinsurgency in Mai Linh Sub-Sector
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To assist in countering local insurgency, each province chief had his own military headquarters, known as sector headquarters, to com-mand and control the Territorial Forces in the province. The Territo-Popular Force (PF) platoons. Regional Force troops were recruited by the province chief from within the province and organized into ...
6. Pacification in Mai Linh District
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The responsibility for the policy and organization of pacification programs and material support rested mainly on a number of U.S. civil agencies, including the U.S. Agency for International Devel-opment (USAID), the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), the U.S. Information Service, the U.S. Department of State, and the USAF ...
7. With the Vietnamese People in Quang Tri
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I have elected to place this chapter of the story here, as the secu-rity of the people of South Vietnam was at the core of the conflict. They were a central element of my experience while in the country, and I judged that the people aspect be presented now, rather than later. Our advisory team role was to do our best to help provide the ...
8. Transition from District to Province
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...(AATTV) indicated that the Mai Linh advisory position for an Aus-tralian Army major was not very challenging. His debriefing with dation that the sector operations officer position would be a more officer informed me that I was to stay in Mai Linh. This was not of concern to me at the time, as I was still becoming familiar with ...
9. Sector Staff Work
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The previous chapter outlined events associated with my transition to the sector operations advisor position. This chapter describes my day-to-day routine experiences as the Team 19 planning and opera-tions officer up to the end of 1968. Significant projects are narrated Forces sector operation on 16 September. A helicopter assault was to ...
10. Pacification Campaigns, Strengthening the Spine
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A province senior advisor (PSA) in South Vietnam had a very broad range of activities and programs within the scope of his responsi-bilities. There were 217 programs countrywide. In this chapter I will cover my involvement in some of the programs related to pacifica-tion. They have been grouped together here for convenience of pre-...
11. Operation Fisher, Refugee Relocation at Gia Dang
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Being a displaced person within your own country during a war is a traumatic experience. For your own government to neglect you in that situation adds further torment to your life and that of your fam-ily. To have to dwell and survive in coastal sand dunes while dis-placed and neglected makes for a very bleak existence. So, helping ...
12. Contingency Planning for Tet 1969
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A series of friendly force initiatives during Tet 1969 indicated battle-field dominance rested clearly with the allies. Command, staff, and troop efforts were rewarded by a relatively peaceful period. Any re-peat of an enemy offensive along the lines of Tet 1968 was thwarted. tion during the second half of 1968. Implementation of the national ...
13. Sector Staff Work
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I pick up the story from Boxing Day 1968 by way of introduction to the activities of 1969. A coordination meeting was held for a cor-don and search operation for the next day. We were informed that “block” was to be the term to use instead of “cordon.” The joint operation had the hallmark of the Stilwell/Truong doctrine. The 1st ...
14. Operation Kangaroo, Cam Vu Resettlement
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...early October 1968. One specific Quang Tri Province project was founded on an area named Cam Vu, a rural village complex six ki-lometers to the west of Dong Ha. Eight evacuated hamlets had been identified for resettlement. The number of displaced people to be returned to their residences was estimated to be about six thousand....
15. Faith at Work
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Little did I realize before taking up my post in Quang Tri that a sig-nificant part of my time as a military advisor would be spent in both urban and rural environments, working mainly on issues that were the core of the counterinsurgency and pacification effort in South Vietnam. This chapter arises from my experiences with people of ...
16. Paris Peace Talks and Ripple Effects
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...president of the United States of America made his surprising an-nouncement on 31 March 1968. The conference of diplomats opened in Paris on 10 May 1968.1 The talks were to continue throughout my year in South Vietnam and for some years thereafter. The prospect of a peace by negotiation fuelled hopes of an early settlement of the ...
17. Australian Leaders in South Vietnam
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The Australian Army hierarchy, from Canberra to the headquarters in Saigon, had a high degree of interest in the deployed AATTV. In tralian leaders, from the AATTV’s commanding officer upward in the Australian chain of command, spent quality time on visitation able benefits for higher ranking Australians in traveling the country. ...
18. The Shield in a Limited War
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During my orientation into Quang Tri Province and the northern re-gion in May 1968 I quickly realized that I had to become profession-ally and mentally adjusted to the enormous military campaign that Now the reality had to be understood so that I could become an ef-so far happened mostly in the populated areas. The combat forces ...
19. Colonel Harley F. Mooney Leads the Way
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What are the qualities required of a commander in a multicultural, multidisciplined conflict environment? Character, leadership skills, knowledge, experience, skills in the organization of people, com-mon sense, communication skills, adaptability, diplomacy, manage-ment skills, and abilities as a teacher and mentor may be some of the ...
20. The Omega and a New Alpha
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As a teenager I enjoyed swimming, often in the ocean surf. As a Tri experience to some of the attributes of body surfing. In the sea, waves roll toward the shore in a never-ending cadence. At the en-is a decision point for the rider, to go or to back off. Occasionally in Vietnam I felt I was in a big wave, as some of the major events ...
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This writing and research project based on my Vietnam diary com-menced in 2007. Without the unfailing support of my wife, Eva, the Other people played an invaluable part in the journey, and I thank them for their part as members of a large support team, albeit one Millie assisted with research and advice on word processing and ...
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Page Count: 432
Publication Year: 2013
Series Title: Foreign Military Studies