Taking the long way: the Hồ Chí Minh Trail


Update: May, 20/2017 – 08:30

Stronger united: Soldiers push a truck stuck in the mud on the trail.

Named after the country’s first president and designed by military genius Gen. Võ Nguyễn Giáp, the Hồ Chí Minh Trail ran over 20,000km through Việt Nam, Laos and Cambodia. During the American War in Việt Nam, the trail, despite heavy bombardment and even the use of chemical weapons by the Americans, never ceased to function as a crucial lifeline that connected the country’s North and South.

Everyday, supplies and soldiers were sent down the trail. The several-months long journey was perilous, due to American bombers’ constant raids, minefields, electronic fences, tropical diseases and poisonous insects. Soldiers considered it a test of resolve, one to help them get ready for the long fight ahead to win their people’s independence and unite their country.

The soldiers were not alone on the trail. Hundreds of thousands of volunteers took part in building and repairing the trail. Thousands of them never made it back home, and far many more were seriously injured during their years of service. They were the force behind the trail, which was said to be unstoppable and regarded as a symbol of the Vietnamese people indomitable spirit. They were the trail. — VNS

Man and machine: Sappers carry logs to help a tank get out of a crater.

Sacred safety: Soldiers cook rice at a rest stop. Fierce fighting and constant threats from American bombers made every life moment invaluable to Vietnamese soldiers.

The greatest sacrifice: Female volunteers work on a bomb crater at the Đồng Lộc Junction in Hà Tĩnh Province, one of the most heavily bombarded site on the trail.Only a few of them survived the war.

The long road: Supply trucks slowly make their way through hundreds of bomb craters.

Platonic friendship: Soldiers reach the exit of a cave along the Hồ Chí Minh Trial. — VNA/VNS Photos

This entry was posted in Nhiếp ảnh - photography, Vietnam War and tagged , , by Trần Đình Hoành. Bookmark the permalink.

About Trần Đình Hoành

I am an attorney in the Washington DC area, with a Doctor of Law in the US, attended the master program at the National School of Administration of Việt Nam, and graduated from Sài Gòn University Law School. I aso studied philosophy at the School of Letters in Sài Gòn. I have worked as an anti-trust attorney for Federal Trade Commission and a litigator for a fortune-100 telecom company in Washington DC. I have taught law courses for legal professionals in Việt Nam and still counsel VN government agencies on legal matters. I have founded and managed businesses for me and my family, both law and non-law. I have published many articles on national newspapers and radio stations in Việt Nam. In 1989 I was one of the founding members of US-VN Trade Council, working to re-establish US-VN relationship. Since the early 90's, I have established and managed VNFORUM and VNBIZ forum on VN-related matters; these forums are the subject of a PhD thesis by Dr. Caroline Valverde at UC-Berkeley and her book Transnationalizing Viet Nam. I translate poetry and my translation of "A Request at Đồng Lộc Cemetery" is now engraved on a stone memorial at Đồng Lộc National Shrine in VN. I study and teach the Bible and Buddhism. In 2009 I founded and still manage dotchuoinon.com on positive thinking and two other blogs on Buddhism. In 2015 a group of friends and I founded website CVD - Conversations on Vietnam Development (cvdvn.net). I study the art of leadership with many friends who are religious, business and government leaders from many countries. In October 2011 Phu Nu Publishing House in Hanoi published my book "Positive Thinking to Change Your Life", in Vietnamese (TƯ DUY TÍCH CỰC Thay Đổi Cuộc Sống). In December 2013 Phu Nu Publishing House published my book "10 Core Values for Success". I practice Jiu Jitsu and Tai Chi for health, and play guitar as a hobby, usually accompanying my wife Trần Lê Túy Phượng, aka singer Linh Phượng.

One thought on “Taking the long way: the Hồ Chí Minh Trail

  1. Em đã phân tích và bình giải nhiều thơ và truyện ngắn của thời kỳ kháng chiến chống Pháp và chống Mỹ nên tinh thần và ý chí của bộ đội và thanh niên xung phong thời kỳ này khá đậm nét trong em.

    Dù có dịp được tìm hiểu nhiều hơn xung quanh cuộc chiến, sau tất cả, trong em vẫn là tình cảm mến yêu những con người đã để lại máu xương và tuổi xuân trong thời kỳ đau khổ của đất nước.

    Mong linh hồn các anh chị ở tất cả các bên được an lạc và bình an vĩnh hằng.

    Số lượt thích

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