The book, "We Were Soldiers Once And Young" was written by retired Lieutenant General Hal Moore and war journalist and reporter Joseph L. Galloway, both of whom were at the battle of la Drang in November 1965 during the Vietnam War…
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The name was taken from the river running through the valley northwest of Plei Me which is the Drang River. The American forces were represented by the 1st Battalion, 7th Cavalry, the 2nd Battalion, 7th Cavalry, and the 1st Battalion, 5th Cavalry of the United States Army. The Vietnamese forces integrated the 33rd, 66th, and 320th Regiments of the People's Army of Vietnam, also the National Liberation Front (NFL) of the H15 Battalion. In this war, no one fully spoke of who won or lost for in this bloody battle "there are no winners, only survivors". (Moore)
The US army had 234 deaths, 242 wounded, and in November 17, they experienced the deadliest ambush noted in the entire Vietnam War with 155 casualties and 126 wounded soldiers. Although this is said to be the most number of casualties for the US troops but the battalion was headed by an acclaimed Lieutenant who portrayed exceptional leadership and bravery binding his team together for victory. The survivors would later on say in testimony of the fighting spirit of the great young Americans in which majority of them are recruits however when their backs are already against the wall, they still fought with all their might and died bravely. Did the leadership of Lt. Hal Moore truly made it possible for the battalion to carry out an extremely dangerous mission taking into consideration that the war was not declared to be a national emergency This declaration would mean that he will be deprived of his oldest, best-trained, and skilled soldiers and most of his men will be volunteer soldiers.
A dedicated US Army officer, Lieutenant Colonel Hal Moore, is profoundly committed to training his troops who will be sent to Vietnam. He believed that a leader must do two things; either pollute his environment and his unit with his attitudes, stance and actions, or he can inspire self-belief. Furthermore, that a leader should be visible on the combat zone and he simply must be there. With that, he needs to exude the determination to prevail no matter what the obstacles are or worse, how distressed the situation may be. He possessed and exhibited the "will to win" (Moore,) by his words, tone of voice either on the radio or even face to face with his team, his actions, and form, his conduct, his tolerance, and the look in his eyes. In the book, Lt. Moore also portrayed calmness, showing his troops that he has no fear. In the midst of all the turmoil, noise, smoke, dust, screams of anguish from the wounded, yells, and the sight of dead lying around him, he was still able to ignore these and focused on accomplishing his task. To abridge all these together, Lt. Moore believed in the principle he calls "three strikes and you're out!" (Moore,)
Another principle he lived by and was evident in the battle of la Drang was, "there is always one more thing you can do to influence any situation in your favor." (Moore,) The way he portrayed this was thru detaching his thoughts for a moment from the noise, and based on a write-up he mentally asks himself "what am I doing that I should not be doing, and what I am not doing that I should be doing to influence the situation in my favor" This was manifested when after arriving Vietnam, he realizes that an American base has been devastatingly attacked and with his 395 men he is ordered to eliminate the enemy. During the battle, they were trapped near a landing zone, but despite that and the reality that they are heavily outnumbered, they were able to hold off the
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