The Only War We Had: A Platoon Leader's Journal of Vietnam

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Overview


“In my year in Vietnam, I walked the booby-trapped rice paddies of the Delta, searching for the elusive Viet Cong, and later macheted my way through the triple-canopy jungle, fighting the North Vietnamese Regulars. . . . I sweated, thirsted, hunted, killed. Somewhere in all my experiences, I overlapped the situations of nearly every infantryman and many others who served.”

Michael Lee Lanning’s journal of his first tour of duty in Vietnam provides an unvarnished daily account of life in the field—the blood, ...

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Overview


“In my year in Vietnam, I walked the booby-trapped rice paddies of the Delta, searching for the elusive Viet Cong, and later macheted my way through the triple-canopy jungle, fighting the North Vietnamese Regulars. . . . I sweated, thirsted, hunted, killed. Somewhere in all my experiences, I overlapped the situations of nearly every infantryman and many others who served.”

Michael Lee Lanning’s journal of his first tour of duty in Vietnam provides an unvarnished daily account of life in the field—the blood, fear, camaraderie, and tedium of combat and maneuver. Fleshed out with narrative and detail years later, the pages of this memorable book, first published in 1987, show an eager young recruit growing before the reader’s eyes into a proud but bloodied combat veteran.

Subsequent volumes in his Vietnam Trilogy will detail Lanning’s tour as a company commander and his post-war investigation into the mind of the enemy. Through his eyes, readers see the reality of a war that did not always receive glory but was, in his words, “the only war we had.”

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Product Details

Meet the Author


MICHAEL LEE LANNING, who retired from a career in the U.S. Army in 1988, was awarded the bronze star for valor with two oak-leaf clusters and numerous other decorations for his service in Vietnam. Author of over a dozen books on military history, he lives in Phoenix, Arizona
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Table of Contents


Preface to the 2007 Edition     vii
Author's Note to the Original Edition     xi
Introduction     1
Pre-Journal     4
Journal     8
Post-Journal     292
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