Monday, May 3, 2010

3 May 1970

Sunday morning
3 May 1970

It is Sunday morning - another week is beginning!  The spring season is here at this time - which means we have hot, stifling hot weather during the day, and during the late afternoon or early evening we have violent thunderstorms.  These storms build up over the mountains to the west and then move across the low land to the sea.  These storms are just like the spring storms of the Texas Panhandle.  The rain is quite cool, which cools the air at night - however, I and everything I have gets soaking wet - which means sleeping in wet clothes!

I have developed a bad prickly heat rash on my back and buttocks.  This is caused not only by the heat - but by the lack of bathing plus having to wear the same, sweaty clothes constantly.  This company will not let the men take off their shirts during the day to expose the skin to a little sun light - so the rash just gets worse.  The company gunnery sgt is responsible for the ridiculous rule of not taking off shirts.  His theory is that this keeps people from getting sunburned!  Of course this theory is absurd - because after a period of time we would all be tan.  This gunnery sgt is really hard on the troops - and as a result, all the men hate him - and morale is low.  However he claims he is only interested in keeping the men alive.

Yesterday’s thunderstorm began just as we started to move to our new position for the night.  So we walked about a mile in a drenching rain.

We have RFs (regional forces - Vietnamese) working with our company - and they are worthless!!!  I can understand why the people might like the VC just as well as they like the government forces.  Every Ville we stop in, these RFs kill or take any livestock or food they want.  They killed a family’s whole flock of chickens yesterday and ate them.  They kill pigs, ducks and I understand they just now killed a cow!  All of this without paying the people.  Of course we give them c-rations also - but seems that’s not enough.  They are also a bunch of beggars!  They will come up to me and ask for water, the cigarettes from my c-rations, any extra c-rations I don’t want, etc.  Sometimes they help themselves without even asking.  All this - and they are an impossible military force.  They are more like a boy scout troop on a camp out!!  I certainly hope the regular Vietnamese army is better than the regional forces!!

The 6th will be 2 weeks in the bush this time, so I’m going back to Baldy and have the other air officer come to the bush for awhile.  I do like the bush better - but with this heat rash, the hot weather, and the daily thunderstorms - it’s just not much fun!  Ha.  I have been in some good direct enemy contact this time which I really like - but........

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