Writing about writing a book – Day 12

Today, I’ve decided on doing a little research, and this means giving the internet and Google a good workout.

I need some information about the Vietnam War.

So, as a start, I type in the words ‘Vietnam War’ into Google.

This returns: About 699,000,000 results (0.83 seconds)

Wikipedia says “The Vietnam War, also known as the Second Indochina War, and in Vietnam as the Resistance War Against America or simply the American War, was a conflict that occurred in Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia from 1 November 1955 to the fall of Saigon on 30 April 1975”

OK, so this gives me the broadest outline.  What I need is details, so it’s a matter of where to start.  This means to start with, when did troops get sent from both Australia and the United States for service.  It seems the US sent troops from 1964 to 1969, and Australia between August 1965 and March 1966.  This gives me a starting point, because our main character is Australian, and somehow gets seconded to the Americans.

January 1972, the war ends.

Now we need to know

  •  where the bases were
  • where the battle zones were
  • methods of transportation
  • what happened to prisoners of war
  • rest and recreation points
  • CIA involvement (which will no doubt be impossible to find evidence)
  • what happened to soldiers injured in battle

It’s a list that will get longer and may require a reading list, and first-hand accounts.

It looks like it’s going to be a long day.

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