Australian Left Review

Article Title

Women in the Vietnam War


Late last year, four A ustralian women visited Vietnam to reciprocate an earlier Australian tour by Vietnamese women. We went via Bangkok and Vientiane to Hanoi. Before we left, we were told we would probably not go to Saigon. Few westerners had been in the South since the war ended, and we didn’t think any special exception would be made in our case. There was only one plane a day from Hanoi to Saigon. It was a DC-4 which carried no more than 30 passengers. So, when our delegation of four, plus a guide and an interpreter were offered the flight, it came as a surprise. Not only were we to be among the first to visit Saigon since the end of the war, but we were taking up six coveted seats in a plane at a time when the first major conference on reunification was being held in Saigon. We were being treated in a far more privileged way than we had expected.