everything we had #5

everything we had #5 - American Military History Al...

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American Military History Al Santoli’s Everything We Had Summary Al Santoli’s Everything We Had is a composition of the stories from thirty three Vietnam veterans who retell their experiences in a conflict that continues to be debated for its merits. Of the thirty three, I have selected six which particularly stand out as remarkable testaments of what our soldiers were put through. In “My Men” and “A Book of Poetry”, the author, Robert Santos draws attention to his personal inability to comprehend his Vietnam experience. Episodes involving medals were particularly confusing to the author and he describes in great detail the way in which replacements were assimilated in the unit and how they were made to feel comfortable and welcome. Mike Beamon was a Navy SEAL in Vietnam assigned to covert operations of a sensitive nature, such as the Phoenix Program which involved mercenaries, recently freed from prison. In his story, “The Green-Faced Frogmen”, Beamon explains the dangerous and illegal nature of the actions his unit was assigned to, such as assassinations which were blamed on the Viet Cong and kidnappings. Specifically striking of his account is the way in which Beamon explains himself as a non-violent person and someone who cannot stand the sight of blood, yet as a SEAL, he was personally responsible for killing on more
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everything we had #5 - American Military History Al...

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