Tunnel Rats of Vietnam

Vietnam’s Little-Known Underground War and the Men and Women Who Fought It.

By Harald Hesstvedt Scharnhorst. Vietnam is a land of incredible beauty: lush tropical jungles, winding, broad rivers and rice pad-dies. Small villages dot this land, worked by peasants, who have lived there for centuries. Eighty-five percent rural, the few large cities and towns lack urban technology.

The peasants live traditional lives of ancestor worship and respect.  Family continuation is dominant. Therefore, possessions, private property and gobs of money are seldom needed. Instead, gold is popular for savings. A father, as head of household, is more custodian than owner. The land will be passed to his children. To a Vietnamese, land is both a sacred and living element, the fountain of life for both villager and peasant through sowing and reaping of rice, the staple protein crop. The Western concept of land ownership and profiteering in a mobile society is alien to the Vietnamese peasant. [Read the entire article in PDF here.]


Taken from

The Barnes Review, July / August 2017: Tunnel Rats of Vietnam

Volume XXIII, Number 4.

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