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Photographer's Note

This is from Da Nang, one of the major cities of Vietnam. It doesn't look big, but most of the city of about a million was behind my back. This is just the northern tip of a long peninsula parallel to the mainland.

I took this photo during a journey in April 1995 to write stories to coincide with the 20 years jubilee of the end of the "American war". I have posted several photos from that journey before, but this one turned out so badly during scanning that I couldn't show it. But I quite liked the view, so I just had to make a new copy.

I came to Da Nang mainly to catch a flight to Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City), but I also wanted to write one story. Someone had told me about a former guerilla soldier who was working as a tourist guide, often showing groups of former US soldiers around. I only knew in which street he lived, but I asked the owner of a bar if he knew him, and was told where to find him. Luckily he was at home and was happy to talk with me, so I had an interesting meeting. He had found out several times that among the Americans he had met on the guided tours were those that had taken part in the same battles as he.

"Just imagine, there we were, trying to kill each other, and now we made friends", he said and expressed his relief that they had all missed their targets.

It was just outside Da Nang, on a large beach, that 2.000 US Marines stepped ashore in March 1965, being the first American combat troops to take part in the war.

Two more photos from the same area of Da Nang are in the WS. They were all scanned from Kodachrome slides.

These hills are easily located on Google Street View, but everything else has changed beyond belief. I don't recognize anything. It's quite likely that all these buildings are gone.

This is not the start of a series of pictures from Vietnam. Next time I will go somewhere else.

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Additional Photos by Gert Holmertz (holmertz) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 11522 W: 562 N: 22203] (96576)
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