Thursday, May 7, 2009

Chieu Hoi

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A Chieu Hoi Bag

Safe conduct pass.
The Chi H?i Program (pronounced 'Choo Hoy', literally translated as "Open Arms"[dubious discuss]) was an initiative by the South Vietnamese to encourage defection by the Viet Cong and their supporters to the side of the Government during the Vietnam War. Defection was urged by means of a propaganda campaign, usually leaflets delivered by artillery shell or dropped over enemy-controlled areas by aircraft, or messages broadcast over areas of South Vietnam, and a number of incentives were offered to those who chose to cooperate, along with psychological warfare to break enemy morale.
To further this aim, invitations to defect, which also acted as safe conduct passes, were printed on clear plastic waterproof bags used to carry ammunition for the US soldier's M16 assault rifle. Each bag held one magazine, and was sealed up to prevent moisture from the jungle's humid climate from damaging the contents. When the magazine was needed during a firefight with the enemy, the bag would be torn open and discarded, in the hope that it would be discovered by enemy troops who would read the text and consider defection.
However, in practice this method was of little value as littering the jungle with these bags would signpost the movement of US troops to the enemy, and Viet Cong would not be keen to retain them as it would indicate their intentions and indict them as traitors; and according to the testimony of Sergeant Scott Camil during the 1971 Winter Soldier Investigation, the passes were sometimes rejected anyway, and their holders shot.
Overall, the Chieu Hoi program was considered to be successful.[citation needed] Those who surrendered were known as "Hoi Chanh", and were often integrated into allied units as Kit Carson Scouts, operating in the same area where they had been captured. Many made great contributions to the effectiveness of U.S. units, and often distinguished themselves, earning decorations as high as the Silver Star. The program was relatively inexpensive, and removed over 100,000 combatants from the field.
1 See also
2 Notes
3 References
3.1 News
3.2 Reports
4 External links
See also
Kit Carson Scouts
^ a b c Kelley, Michael P. (2002). Where We Were In Vietnam. Hellgate Press. pp.F13. ISBN 1-55571-625-3.
^ Testimony of Scott Camil, Winter Soldier Investigation
"Moving Forward". TIME. 1966-09-23.,9171,842793,00.html. Retrieved on 2007-09-30.
"Allies' Aims & Hopes, In War & Peace". TIME. 1966-11-04.,9171,842925,00.html. Retrieved on 2007-09-30.
"Charlie, Come Home!". TIME. 1967-02-10.,9171,840822,00.html. Retrieved on 2007-09-30.
"Coming On Over". TIME. 1967-04-14.,9171,836946,00.html. Retrieved on 2007-09-30.
"After Crossing Over". TIME. 1968-08-23.,9171,838610,00.html. Retrieved on 2007-09-30.
Jenkins, Brian Michael (2005-06-26). "Strategy: Political warfare neglected". San Diego Union Tribune. Retrieved on 2007-09-30.
Gerwehr, Scott; Nina Hachigian (2005-08-25). "In Iraq's Prisons, Try a Little Tenderness". New York Times. Retrieved on 2007-09-30.
Andrade, Dale (2006-11-03). "Too Soon To Rule Out Amnesty". Washington Post. pp.A21. Retrieved on 2007-09-30.
Carrier, J.M.; C.A.H. Thomson (May 1966) (PDF). Viet Cong Motivation And Morale: The Special Case Of Chieu Hoi. RAND. RM-4830-2-ISA/ARPA.
Kellen, Konrad (September 1970) (PDF). Conversations With Enemy Soldiers In Late 1968/Early 1969: A Study Of Motivation And Morale. RAND. RM-6131-1-ISA/ARPA.
Koch, J.A. (January 1973) (PDF). The Chieu Hoi Program in South Vietnam, 1963-1971 (DECLASSIFIED). RAND. R-1172-ARPA.
Long, Austin (2006) (PDF). On 'Other War': Lessons from Five Decades of RAND Counterinsurgency Research. RAND. ISBN 0-8330-3926-1.
External links
The Chieu Hoi Program of Vietnam
Chieu Hoi Leaflet Collection
Vietnam War "Flag" Safe Conduct Passes
Vietnam War Chieu Hoi
Categories: Vietnam War | Psychological warfare | Counter-insurgency | Military operations of the Vietnam War
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