By: Shira Haus
As the Vietnam war draws to a close, the South Vietnamese Council scrambles to protect valuable areas of South Vietnam while holding a strong offensive line. The United States delegation has been removed as the US withdraws from Vietnam, leaving the South Vietnamese military low on troops and civilians low on supplies. The situation is dire, and the council has been passing one action after another to combat the North Vietnamese.
Both the city of Saigon and the Ho Chi Minh trail are crucial to protect from North Vietnamese forces. The committee must find a way to spread troops around their territory to cover civilian zones and fend off North Vietnamese troops from capturing these regions. The council decided not to move troops further south, for they believe it would only aid North Vietnam in their advancements. South Vietnam is going attempt to hold enemy fire. “It’s down to the nitty gritty,” says Nguyen Cao Ky, who believes that South Vietnam will hold for a final push.
However, South Vietnamese tactics include more than traditional warfare. The committee decided to place Agent Orange, an agent containing deadly chemicals, in rivers running through North Vietnam. This choice to infect the environment with Agent Orange has left many North Vietnamese citizens angry since they depend on those water sources for survival.
The tension between the communist minority and the capitalist majority in the council escalated when the communists managed to sway the ex-president of the South Vietnamese Council over to their side. Although the communists have no voting rights or real power to make decisions in the committee, this small victory was enough to worry the capitalist members.
Communist members of the council have also come under fire as a note from a councilmember to North Vietnamese military command surfaced, detailing the strategies proposed in committee. As if the council already didn’t have enough to deal with, a mole has infiltrated their ranks, and attempted to send top-secret information to the enemy.When caught, the mole is likely to face consequences that equate to the magnitude of their crime, a punishment most severe: removal from the council and community service.
With the end of committee, a decisive battle looms on the horizon. Will South Vietnam pull a surprise victory at the end? If so, that final battle will certainly be one for the history books.