Joe Galloway set the standard for today’s journalists. Whether he was reporting from Vietnam with General Hal Moore or the Persian Gulf with General Norman Schwarzkopf, or writing about the battles of today, his work has been steeped in honesty and integrity. He remains the only civilian to receive a medal of valor from the U.S. Army, for heroism during the Vietnam War—the Bronze Star Medal with “V” device. In 1991, he received a National Magazine Award for his U.S. News & World Report cover story “Vietnam Story.” With General Hal Moore, he wrote the classics We Were Soldiers Once . . . and Young and We are Soldiers Still. I met Joe a few years ago in Los Angeles. It was an honor—not a meeting to be forgotten.
SP: In last week’s Creative Process interview, I mentioned to General Hal Moore that many of the readers of this series are artists and entrepreneurs, waging personal battles to succeed in their individual fields. The military is often the last place they’d think to look to for advice on how to think creatively under fire. In a Digital Journalist article, you wrote:
“You cannot always remain a witness, above and removed from the story you are covering. There are some events which demand your participation. The battle of Landing Zone XRay was one such event in my life.”
In your decades of covering the military, you’ve seen people jump in within seconds, as you and medic Tommy Burlile did to try to save the life of Jimmy D. Nakayama. But in other instances, people pause.
What is it within you that’s always made you jump in—from putting your own life on the line while trying to save the life of another, to being “there” to get the story that needed telling? What’s kept you from pausing? Aside from the rights and wrongs of the different situations, what inside you has made you jump?
JG: You ask me to analyze what has always made me jump when others might pause. Tough question. I’ve always been competitive and 22 years at United Press International (UPI), the now defunct news wire service, only sharpened that edge. UPI’s motto was always: A Deadline Every Minute. You learned to move fast, get the story fast and first, write fast and leave The Associated Press in the dirt.
When I went to Vietnam to cover the war in the spring of 1965 I had just turned 23 years old. I spent my first seven months covering the U.S. Marines. The learning curve is steep in combat. You learn to read a situation, or a man, instantly and if you are wrong it can cost you your life.
At the core, down deep, is a willingness to act on instinct when the situation leaves no time for chewing things over or searching the memory for a textbook solution. I trust my instincts. They are the sum total of all I know, all I have read, all I have experienced, all I have learned. Instinct has served me well all my life. It has permitted me to jump when others might not, and survive to tell the stories.
SP: Why did you choose to cover the military? You were still a teen when you started out as a journalist, and just into your 20s when you asked to go to Vietnam. Many of us struggle with our careers well into adulthood. What made you so sure at such a young age? And how prepared were you when you jumped out of Bruce Crandall’s helicopter November 14, 1965?
JG: I was fairly certain by 1963 that Vietnam was about to become an American war, my generation’s war, and I wanted to report on that war. In my youth I had read a collection of Ernie Pyle’s World War II columns and I knew that if I became a reporter, and my generation had its war I wanted to cover that war like Ernie Pyle covered his war—from as far forward as possible.
I had my first taste of reporting on my high school newspaper, and quit college after six weeks. I was 17 and on my way to the recruiting office to join the Army, dragging my mother along to sign the papers because I was so young. We drove past the daily newspaper, The Victoria Advocate, just two or three blocks short of the Courthouse and the recruiters, and my mom asked: “What about your journalism, Joe?” I told her to stop the car, walked in and asked the managing editor for a job. He hired me on the spot. I loved everything about the life and never looked back.
As for how prepared I was when I jumped off the Huey on November 14, 1965, I believed I could handle whatever was thrown at me. Everyone I had marched with for the previous seven months had seen to that. I carried all I needed on my back—poncho and poncho liner, a change of underwear and socks, four canteens full of water, some instant coffee packs, two Nikon F cameras, four lenses, black and white and color film, notebooks, an M16 rifle and 20 loaded magazines, a snub-nosed Smith & Wesson .38 special belt gun and a box of ammo, and two books—Bernard Fall’s Street Without Joy and T.R. Fehrenbach’s This Kind of War.
I had earlier flown over the LZ XRAY battlefield in Col. Tim Brown’s command helicopter and had seen just how intensely the battle was raging below. I knew what was waiting for me there: the major battle I had been searching for the past seven months. I had turned 24 the day before; I was young and thought I was immortal, if not bulletproof. I knew I was the only reporter getting in to cover this fight; I knew I had left Peter Arnett of The Associated Press, my competition, miles behind and was about to give him the biggest ass-kicking of his career. I was ready and happy to be on that helicopter.
SP: In a Ia Drang panel, you discussed meeting General Hal Moore, and how you ended up on that helicopter in:
“I spotted and recognized Hal Moore’s S3, his operations officer, Matt Dillon, and I grabbed him and I said ‘Matt, I need to get in there.’ And he said ‘Joe, I’m going in as soon as it is dark, with a couple of helicopters full of ammo and water, but I can’t take you without Col. Moore’s say so.’
“And I said ‘Well, get him on the radio.’ And I followed him and we went into a little GP medium tent, which was the battalion rear, and he got on the radio, and in the middle of the fight, he’s talking to the colonel and he’s telling him, I’m coming in and here’s whose coming, and here’s what I’m bringing and he said, ‘Oh, by the way, that reporter Galloway wants to come in too.’ And Hal Moore, God bless him, said ‘If he’s crazy enough to want to come in here, and you’ve got room, bring him along.'”
Since then, you’ve continued to cover America’s battles abroad. How has the media/military relationship changed and/or stayed the same? How did you adapt through the years, to continue to “get the story?”
JG: Relations between the military and the media have always been difficult, if not openly adversarial. In more than four decades of covering wars and our military I’ve come to see relations between the two institutions as resembling the pendulum on an old clock, moving very slowly back and forth between good and bad, warm and ice cold. One thing which has changed is the level of control the military exerts on the media. Vietnam was the most openly covered war in our history. There was no censorship and only the most rudimentary of rules. You turned up in Saigon with a letter from some publication and in a day or two you had your U.S. and South Vietnamese military press cards. You were required to sign a single sheet of paper with five or six very basic “operational security” rules you agreed to follow: I will not report troop movements while they are still underway. I will not report the actual number of friendly casualties in a battle while the battle is still underway. In eight years of the American war in Vietnam, 1965–1973, I believe only six or seven correspondents ever had their credentials revoked for violation of those rules.
The next big operation was Grenada and that little war took place without a single reporter or photographer on the ground with the American forces. When the media threatened to hire boats and come anyway, the admiral commanding responded: If they do sink them! This was a modern low point in the struggle, matched in history only by Gen. William Tecumseh Sherman’s threat to hang any reporter he found in his area of operations as an enemy spy.
This led to creation of a ready reaction media pool of a hand full of press subject to activation and movement by the Pentagon in a few hours time. The pool was activated for the Panama invasion, flown to the scene and then was locked up in a hangar on an air base and kept there until the mini-war was over.
The Persian Gulf War saw more than 1,000 news people turn up in Saudi Arabia to cover the impending action at a time when the military was planning to create ten pools of ten media people each, just 100 war correspondents to cover three-quarters of a million allied troops on land, air and sea. Each of the pools would have its own official minder, usually a colonel, who had the authority to censor pool reports. At the last minute the number of pools was increased to a total of 15; the number of press people to 150.
That didn’t work very well at all for either side. The media was largely shut out of covering combat. The system for collecting pool reports and film was a single officer who made a daily run by humvee some 200 miles along a road on the Saudi-Kuwait-Iraq border and then hitched a ride on a plane bound for Dharan and the media headquarters in the International Hotel. Between the outright censorship and delayed reports, the U.S. Army high command awoke to find it had virtually no tape or photographs of the tank battles in Kuwait and Iraq.
The pendulum began to swing back toward better relations as a consequence. With planning for the first U.S. troops entering Bosnia, the terms “embed” and “embedded reporter” were first heard—and the Army was now welcoming media who were willing to join a unit being deployed for a long stay, several weeks instead of a day or two.
By the time of the invasion of Iraq in early 2003, embedding journalists with military units was in full flower—more than 730 media would go to war alongside the troops. But to qualify, they were required to sign a 36-page, single-spaced, double-sided document that spelled out what they could and could not do on pain of being expelled from their unit and from the war.
As for me, I was viewed and treated differently by the military, even when they were really pissed at the press. I had almost literally grown up with soldiers and Marines. I liked them and treated them fairly and dealt with them honestly, and I was waved through gates that were closed to others in my profession. Along the way my co-author and best friend, Lt. Gen. Hal Moore, and I gave literally hundreds of speeches at the military academies, war colleges, staff colleges, captain’s courses. Thousands of officers heard those talks and, through them, got to know us.
Whenever I went on military operations, whether the Haiti incursion or two recent tours in Iraq, there were always friends there among the senior NCOs and officers at all levels.
SP: I’ve done a lot of research for my own writing in the past, but I’ve never had to face people who were, years earlier, killing those around me. In the Digital Journalist article mentioned above, you wrote:
“On the 1993 documentary trip Hal Moore and I and half a dozen other American veterans of the battle went back to XRAY and ALBANY in company with half a dozen North Vietnamese generals and colonels who had fought against us there. Together we walked those old battlefields and agreed that those events of November, 1965, had been pivotal in all our lives. We have broken bread with them in their homes in Hanoi. It’s hard to explain to someone who hasn’t lived it, but in a strange sort of way we are blood brothers. There is no hatred; only a shared relief that at least some of us survived to carry the memories of those who died, and bear witness to the horror of this war and all wars.”
How did you feel going back into Vietnam to meet with North Vietnamese leaders, while researching We Were Soldiers Once . . . and Young? When you were researching, did you find that how you remembered things, weren’t so? Or did many of you remember the same thing?
JG: On our first trip to Hanoi in 1990 researching the book, Hal and I talked about how we might be received on the long flight across the Pacific. We hoped to meet and interview men we had fought; men who did their best to kill us, as we did them. We were flying to the enemy capital which our country had bombed. We had no idea how we would be received, and so we were a bit nervous. But on that trip, and subsequent trips in 1991 and 1993, we were always warmly received both by civilian officials and the military men we met, from Gen. Vo Nguyen Giap to Maj. Hao, who was one of our minders on the trip to LZ XRAY and ALBANY.
Both we and they were full of questions about those three days in November 1965. The answers at times surprised the questioners, again on both sides. Lt. Gen. Nguyen Hu An, Gen. Moore’s opposite number in command on the battlefield at XRAY, was genuinely surprised to learn that Moore was not in command at LZ ALBANY and that it was not Moore’s 1st Battalion 7th Cavalry but a sister battalion, 2nd Battalion 7th Cavalry, which his troops ambushed at LZ ALBANY, on November 17, with such deadly effect.
In our interviews of the American veterans of the Ia Drang battles, we found that the individual soldier’s recollection of what happened in that small slice of territory around his foxhole or position was near letter perfect. Hal and I had determined from the beginning that we would do our best to get the soldier’s-eye view of our battle. Conventional wisdom holds that an Infantryman only sees a tiny slice of a battle—maybe ten yards either side and 20 yards in front of his foxhole. That’s true, but if you can get the story of each soldier, foxhole to foxhole, around the entire perimeter, you will get the true story of that battle. And each soldier’s story and memory can be checked against what the guy in the next foxhole saw and remembers.
SP: General Barry McCaffrey said:
“Joe Galloway has more time in combat, under fire, than anyone wearing a uniform today. He rode along on the 24th Division’s tank charge through 250 miles of the western Iraq desert in the Persian Gulf War, and did a splendid job of telling the story.”
You’ve covered battle after battle since Vietnam, putting your own feet on the ground. In the past few years, you’ve criticized the leadership behind our current battles. When you don’t agree with a war on a personal level, how do you cover it with an even hand, as a journalist? In your column following the death of Robert McNamara, you wrote:
“Back in 1990 I had a series of strange phone conversations with McNamara while doing research for my book We Were Soldiers Once And Young. McNamara prefaced every conversation with this: “I do not want to comment on the record for fear that I might distort history in the process.” Then he would proceed to talk for an hour, doing precisely that with answers that were disingenuous in the extreme—when they were not bald-faced lies.
“Upon hanging up I would call Neil Sheehan and David Halberstam and run McNamara’s comments past them for deconstruction and the addition of the truth.
“The only disagreement I ever had with Dave Halberstam was over the question of which of us hated him the most. In retrospect, it was Halberstam.
“When McNamara published his first book—filled with those distortions of history—Halberstam, at his own expense, set out on a journey following McNamara on his book tour around America as a one-man truth squad.
“McNamara abandoned the tour.”
Before you started writing your opinion column, how did you keep your personal opinions out of your reports? How did you keep it even?
JG: I never had a problem separating my personal opinions from the news stories I was writing. I grew up working for UPI, a worldwide news agency. There was never any room for personal opinions in a UPI news story. Never. I spent 22 years with UPI, and my next employer for almost 20 years was U.S. News & World Report magazine. The editors at U.S. News, at least during the first part of my time there, believed strongly in presenting the facts and letting your reader make up his own mind about the issue at hand. The top editor at Knight Ridder’s Washington bureau was Clark Hoyt, who had a well deserved reputation as one of the straightest shooters in the business. He even kept some of my angriest opinions out of my opinion column, counseling me to always keep an even keel and bring the reader along by presenting the facts in a clear, concise way.
SP: You’ve been a leader within the journalism and military community, and you’ve known legendary leaders in the military community as they’ve risen—such as General Norman Schwarzkopf, whom you met in Vietnam, and then went on to cover, and embed with during Desert Storm. Most recently, General McChrystal has been in the news, with people questioning his leadership skills. What’s your advice to our next generation of leaders, both civilian and military? What is it that has worked for you and for others?
JG: Whether you are leading an Army, a battalion, a platoon, a Fortune 100 corporation, or a one-man band, the principles and ethics of leadership are fairly simple and straight-forward. It is following them consistently, year after year, for a lifetime that is somehow difficult.
I’ve been fortunate to see some great military commanders at work, close hand, and while all of them keep a flexibility of mind that allows for changing situations, those leaders hew to the same high personal standards with little visible change over the decades.
By this I speak specifically of Generals Hal Moore, Norm Schwarzkopf, Sam V. Wilson and Barry McCaffrey, all of whom I count as personal friends, comrades-in-arms and mentors. I would trust any of them with my life, and have done just that many times over the years.
What are some of the traits these leaders share?
They speak the truth to those they lead—calmly, clearly and consistently—and they expect to hear the truth in return.
They lead by example, asking no man to do something they would not do themselves, have not done themselves many times before.
They push the power down but follow up to make sure the job is getting done right. They also push the rewards and acclaim down to those who did the job. They are aware that, while the power can be pushed down, the responsibility always rests with them.
They praise their people publicly; offer criticism or corrections in private. They respect the dignity of those who work with and for them.
They are leaders who believe that studying, learning, reading does not end at the exit door of the last school they attended. They know that this is a life’s work and never ends. My friend Hal Moore, now 88, spends most of his waking hours with stacks of newspapers on one hand, and stacks of books on the other, working his way through them diligently.
They have all lived long enough to see both our country and the world change greatly, and not always for the better. None of them are afraid to speak up, from retirement, when asked for their opinion of some of these changes. None of them were afraid, when serving, of engaging with the media, one-on-one or in large groups.
None of them had or has a political bone in their bodies. Not one of them, in retirement, ever sought elected office. Not one of them, in uniform, ever spoke ill in public or in private of the elected political leaders. Not one ever challenged the ideas of civilian control of the military power delineated by our founding fathers.
All of them are men of action who know first-hand the horrors of war and the sacrifices that military service demands. They know that the deadliest work is done at platoon and company level, by young lieutenants and captains, and that if there is any disagreement between what they report and what the bean-counters in the rear believe, they give the benefit of any doubt to those who are doing the work.
All of them have strived, all their lives, to be men of character whose moral standards are the highest. Three are West Pointers whose belief in that unique school’s code—I will not lie, steal, cheat or quibble, or tolerate those who do—is as constant as their belief in Duty, Honor, Country. They know these things are inseparable and good, easily read guideposts to their personal conduct. The fourth, Gen. Wilson, graduated from a different school—at 17 he was a lieutenant leading the scout platoon of Merrill’s Marauders in Burma—but one whose standards were every bit as high as those at West Point. Wilson went into Burma with 2,000 fellow Americans; he was one of 200 who came out on their own feet.
I am proud of all of them and hope that our nation shares some of that pride. These are surely times that cry out for good leaders. Such men and women can be found in all walks of life, but we must learn to hold them to the high standards demanded by perilous times. The price of failure to meet the challenges of good leadership today will be paid by our children and grandchildren.
Joe Galloway is a true and enduring icon within journalistic history. He set the standard….
would like to contact Joe Galloway t0 sign His book we were soldiers once and young. Which has already been signed by Hal Moore and Basil Plumley. Thank you.
Why the Military? When nothing makes sense any more, you go looking for reality and simple facts. But what you find is what sent you there in the first place—“why?”
I’ve known Joe since the battle of LZ-XRay where I commanded an Infantry company. He has always been a reporter who told the truth without personal biases and whom one could trust. That is not always the case. He also understood the life of the rifleman. I am glad to see that, in todays world it appears that several young reporters have picked up his mantle.
I was with Hal Moore, Tony Nadal and Joe Galloway at XRay. Joe has been my friend ever since. He is every soldiers friend.
Joe has been my friend for over forty years, he has never let the soldier down. God Bless Him.
The first time I met Joe was on the third day of battle at Lz X-Ray. I thought, who is this guy and what the hell is he doing taking pictures? Thank God he was there to capture history. He has been our friend and brother since.
These are the friends of a lifetime, brothers really, of a family created on a battlefield. I care far more about their approval than any other. We shared the risk of imminent death in the beginning, and have shared all the good and bad times since.
Thanks Bill, Matt, Tony, Steve.
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The Creative Process: Joe Galloway…
I am a former history teacher who just watched the film (Mel Gibson) with wife and college age daughters. I then googled “Joe Galloway” to learn of the background of a great photographer, that sets a solid example for you g journalists. I especially am thankful to read his characterization of leadership traits, and will share them with my son Connor.
would like to contact Joe Galloway t0 sign His book we were soldiers once and young. Which has already been signed by Hal Moore and Basil Plumley. Thank you.
I really loved that one, because it is full of interesting facts and it’s a kind of easygoing article.
I spent just a couple of minutes studying, and due to well-structured text, so I know it
JOE LEE GALLOWAY’S TRUE FEELING ABOUT THE VIETNAM VETERAN
Name: Russell L. RossEmail: [email protected]: https://www.facebook.com/people/Russell-L-Ross/100009547068289Comment: from Hal Moore A Soldier ……Once and Always by MIKE GUARDIA page 171-172Joe Lee Galloway “I speak for the Vietnam Veteran.”BUT, JOE LEE GALLOWAY’S TRUE FEELING ABOUT THE VIETNAM VETERAN.” Damed if I’d want to go for a walk in the sun with them.””Black GI’s going thru long involved black power identification rituals.””THE REST ARE JUST COMMITTING SUICIDE.”Here dead we lieBecause we did not chooseTo live and shame the landfrom which we sprungLife to be sureJoe Lee Galloway”Once we fought this war well, NOW WE FIGHT IT POORLY.”from Hal Moore A Soldier ……Once and Always by MIKE GUARDIA page 171-172Joseph Lee Galloway’s original story of Landing Zone X-RAY Nov,14-16, 1965Twenty JAMESTOWN ( N.Y. ) POST- JOURNAL- Wednesday Evening,November 17,1965WOUNDED SOLDIER LOSES HALF HIS PLATOON IN BITTER CHU PONG FRAYBy JOSEPH GALLOWAYChu Pong Mountain, South Viet Nam ( UPI )—- The soldiers eyes were red from loss of sleep, and maybe a bitfrom crying too, now that it was all over.A three-day growth of beard stubbled his cheeks. But was hard to see because of the dirt. He was hurt, in terriblepain, but you’d never know it. Slivers of shrapnel had ripped his chest and spared his leg.He sat on the landing zone below the Chu Pong mountain where more Americans had died than ever before ina battle against Communists in a war over Viet Nam. He had gone through hell — three days of it— and still abit dazed, more from lack of sleep then his wounds, though. When I walked up to him, he spoke, But not to mein particular, nor to the other guys sitting around sipping the first hot cup of coffee they had since the fightbegan.Loses a Friend” I took care of 14 of ’em myself,” He said. “They were tough little bastards. You had to shoot them to piecesbefore they quit coming . . . just rip them apart.”I squatted on my heels waiting for him to say more, But he didn’t. Somebody told me he had lost half of hisplatoon, including a friend he had served with for more than eight years. “What is his name?” I ask.” It’s not important,” the sergeant slouching nearby said. “He’s just one of us and he did a damn good job.” Everyone did a damn good job. And nobody knew it better than Gen. Knowles, task force commander anddeputy commander of the 1st Air Cavalry.”These men were just great,” he told me. “They were absolutely tremendous. I’ve never seen a better jobanywhere, anytime,”Back From BattleMonday another American soldier walked out of the jungle into the valley of death. Bullets whizzed over hishead and kicked up dirt at his feet.” Get down you fool!” We shouted.The GI kept walking, He carried no weapon, He walked straight and tall.A mortar shell exploded nearby, He didn’t waver, Shrapnel chopped off branches above my head. But theAmerican out there in the open came on until he was within a few feet of the battalion command bunker. Helooked funny, dazed.Then we knew, he was shell shocked. He paused for a moment and looked around. He recognized the aidstation set up under the trees and walked toward it.Just as the soldier reached the station he slumped to his knees, then pitched forward on his face, That is whenwe saw his back for the first time.It wasn’t pretty, It had been blown open by a communist mortar.Medics were unable to reach the soldier because of the almost solid wall of communist bullets and jagged steelfragments coming from the jungle. So he walked out, The bullets and mortar did not bother him anymore, Hehad his.Veterans CriedThe men of the U.S. 1st Air Cavalry fought like heroes. They died the same way, Some took their woundswithout a whimper. Seasoned Veterans cried.Col. Hal Moore of Bardstown, Ky., the commanding officer of the 7th Battalion, 1st cavalry, Came over to me,tears streaming down his face, His men were catching from the slopes of this mountain range less than fivemiles from the Cambodian border.I’m kind of emotional about this, so excuse me,” Moore said to me. “But I want you to tell the American peoplethat these men are fighters.”Look at them.”Moore pointed to a Negro soldier lying in the shade of a tree. A Communist bullet had torn a huge hole in hisstomach. The soldier had his hands over the wound. You could see him bite his lip. He was in terrific pain, Buthe made no whimper as he waited for a medical helicopter.” Look at them,” Moore said again. ” They’re great and the American people ought to know it.”WAR “ACCIDENT”It was shortly after 8:30 a.m. Monday when one of those terrible accidents of war happened.I was sitting in the command bunker, A mound of dirt screening us from the communist snipers, looking at thewounded in the aid station just a few yards away.Suddenly, I felt a searing heat on my face.An American fighter-bomber had misjudged the Communist positions, and dropped a load of napalm. Theflaming jelly gasoline, impossible to shake or scrape off once it hits skin, splashed along the ground in a hugedragon’s tail of fire less then 25 yards away.Screams penetrated the roar of the flames. two Americans stumbled out of the inferno. Their hair burned off inan instant. their clothes were incinerated.” Good God!” Moore cried. Another plane was making a run over the same area. The colonel grabbed a radio.” You’re dropping napalm on us!” he shouted. ” Stop those damn planes.”At almost the last second, the second plane pulled up and away, its napalm tanks still hanging from the wings.It was an hour before a medical helicopter could get into the area and tend to the two burned men. One GI wasa huge mass of blisters, the other not quite so bad. Somehow his legs had escaped the flames. But he hadbreathed fire into his lungs and he wheezed for air.A MEDIC ASK ME TO HELP GET THE MEN INTO THE HELICOPTER WHEN IT ARRIVED. THERE WERENO LITTERS. TENDERLY, WE PICKED THE SOLDIERS UP. I HELD A LEG OF THE MOST SERIOUSLYBURNED MAN. I WASN’T TENDER ENOUGH. A BIG PATCH OF BURNED SKIN CAME OFF IN MY HAND.VC BATTALIONSChu Pong Mountain rises 2,500 feet from the valley below. From the top, you could almost lob a mortar shellinto Cambodia. The mountain slope were heavily jungled. And they hid at least two battalions of NorthVietnamese Army regulars—- possibly the same troops who pinned down two companies of air cavalrymen notfar away about a week ago.The cavalry were looking for them, spoiling for a fight. They found the Communist Monday and dropped byhelicopter into a small landing zone about the size of a football field at the base of the mountain on the valleyfloor.One platoon got about 300 yards up the mountain before the Communist opened up. From Behind, cut it offand fired on the main cavalry force from three sides with small arms, heavy machine-guns, and mortars.Time and again, the cavalrymen tried to move in and help the platoon’ pull back, It was futile. The fire was toheavy. The platoon spent the night on the mountainside. Their losses were heavy, but the damage to theCommunist was said to be heavier.”We got 70 communist bodies stacked up in front of our positions,” the platoon leader radioed back Monday.Men DyingIt was shortly before noon Sunday when the cavalrymen swept down in the area about 12 miles west of Pleiku.Ever since the nine day battle around the Special Forces camp at Plei Me, the cavalrymen have beensweeping the jungles and running into sporadic contact with hard-core Communist units.Brig. Gen. Richard Knowles, deputy commander of the air cavalry division, OFFERED ME A RIDE IN HISHELICOPTER.WE CIRCLED OVER THE BATTLE GROUND. Air strikes went in below us. An American A1E skyraider was hiton a low- level bombing run, and the pilot had no chance to bail out. The plane crashed and exploded in acluster of trees.Men are dying down there, but they are doing their job. “This is good,” Knowles said.” This is what we came for.We’ve got a U.S. battalion well -equipped down there.”Many DeadI got my chance to join the men on the ground about 8 P.M. I went with a helicopter loaded with supplies andammunition.we were level with the middle of the mountain and in the darkness we could see the muzzle flashes of riflesand machine-gun spitting bullets at us. I said a prayer.Sgt.Maj. Basil Plumley of Columbus, Ga., met us at the landing zone, and led me back to Co. Moore’scommand bunker.” Watch your step,” Plumley said, ” There were dead people, all over here.” They were dead Americans many wrapped in ponchos.At Day break Monday, Medical helicopters began landing and taking off again with the wounded. A detail wasassigned the job of collecting weapons and ammunition from the wounded before the were evacuated.Joe Lee Galloway “I speak for the Vietnam Veteran.”Joe Lee Galloway ” THIS WAR WE CAN’T WIN” March 1965 with the Marines ,I was(disabused )of that notion pretty early on with the( Marines.)disabuse = Free from Error, Fallacy or Misconception.JOE LEE GALLOWAY two faced.You thought that, but couldn’t say it in your reporting?Joe Lee Galloway ” This war we can’t win.”worked for UPI. We were not paid to have an opinion and if we did we were to keep it to ourselves.I And for me, there was the other thing. I thought, “ This war we can’t win.”http://www.historynet.com/interview-joe-galloway-soldiers-reporter-speaks-his-mind.htmInterview with Joe Galloway: Soldier’s Reporter Speaks His MindBY VIETNAM MAGAZINE 4/18/2011 • VIETNAM FIRST PERSON, VIETNAM WAR
Joe Lee Galloway did not rescue Jimmy D. Nakayama or James Clark, they walked to the aid station under their own power, aided by other troops.
Joe Lee Galloway did load two troops on the Huey when he was ask to help by a Medic.
Joe Lee Galloway “I would later learn his name was Jimmy D. Nakayama.”
in some of Joe Lee Galloway’s stories, he would write that Cathy was Jimmy’s wife, when her name was Trudy.
FALSE;I pulled him up his boots crumbled and the skin over his ankle bones sloughed off. I could
feel those bones in the palms of my hands. [The soldier, Jim Nakayama, died two days
later.] For years I was haunted.
“For years, I was haunted.”
Joe Galloway, UPI Reporter, Vietnam: The War That Changed Everything
U.S. NAVY/COURTESY JOE GALLOWAY
“A U.S. Air Force plane dropped two cans of napalm on us.
I felt the fire on my face immediately. I looked and there were two guys dancing in the fire, screaming.
FICTION: I don’t know what got into me, but I ran into the fire.
I grabbed the feet of this kid, and as I pulled him up his boots crumbled and the skin over
his ankle bones sloughed off.
I could feel those bones in the palms of my hands.
[The soldier, Jim Nakayama, died two days later.] For years I was haunted. How can I explain it to somebody who hasn’t been there? You live with it. You carry so many ghosts. I thought for a while they’d drive me crazy.”
— UPI war reporter Joe Galloway witnessed the four-day Battle of Ia Drang in November 1965. Galloway was awarded a Bronze Star for valor as a civilian. He’s also the coauthor of We Were Soldiers Once … and Young.
The Troops who did help Jimmy D. Nakayama and James Clark, Not Joe Lee Galloway!
Arturo Villarreal · Sidney Lanier High School
Sp4 James Clark was not given any morphine by the medics. He came running towards my foxhole with
his clothes on fire. I helped putting the fire out and I just gave him some saline solution. I took him to the
CP and ask the doctor to give him something for the terrible pain, but the doctor told that they didn’t have
anything to give him and he just told me to just keep giving him the saline solution.
++After some time pass, some helicopters landed and I put him aboard one of them.
Nov. 14-18, 1965< this would be LZ X-Ray's battle
Robert Saucedo should have been leaving the war. Instead, he was riding in the 16th helicopter in a formation high above the jungle on its way to the Ia Drang Valley.
Jimmy Nakayma died in flight,3 degree burns no other injuries. ie Crushed ankle.
"On the second day, they dropped a couple of napalms in the (landing zone), and a couple of guys bringing in choppers – the engineers – they got burned," he said with eyes distant.
++"They ran to our foxholes. We treated them for burns."
++"We treated him for burns. His face was on fire. His weapon was on fire," he said. "It was bad."
Absolutely The Creative Process…Joe Galloway..Miss you
ARTILLERY PREPARATORY FIRES, total time 37 minutes. “we got word that because of air movement delays the artillery was not yet in position at Landing Zone Falcon and could not begin the prep fires on the Ia Drang targets before 1017 hrs.
1/7 Cavalry, After Action Report for Landing Zone X-Ray, Nov 14-16 1965.
Confusion, between the After action report, and the book We Were Soldiers Once and Young,
and other soldiers from the 1/7th, and their stories about the battle.
Left out of After Action Report, 10 minutes before lift off for LZ X-Ray, An intelligence Officer told them, they
were facing 1,500 enemy troops near LZ X-Ray.
From Page 58 of We Were Soldiers Once and Young.
ARTILLERY PREPARATORY FIRES, total time 37 minutes.
“we got word that because of air movement delays the artillery was not yet in position at Landing Zone Falcon
and could not begin the prep fires on the Ia Drang targets before 1017 hrs.
8 minutes on Yankee, 8 minutes on Tango, 20 minutes on LZ X-Ray, 30 seconds Gunship (Machinegun ) 30
second of ARA (Rockets) 2.75.= 21 minutes of artillery fire on LZ X-Ray.
From the After Action Report
1030 hours for the assault landing with the 20 minute tube artillery preparation.
The aerial artillery came in on the heels of the tube artillery fires and worked over the area for 30
seconds expending half their loads – then went into a nearby air orbit on call.
The lift battalion gun ships took up the fires and were immediately ahead of the UH-lD’s
B. FRIENDLY (INCLUDES ATTACHED UNITS):
Killed – 79
Wounded – 121
Missing – None
left out missing troops from LZ X-Ray battle, about 6 troops.
“Yes, we did return to the Ia Drang.
In fact, we air assaulted back into X Ray.
it was quiet.
The mission was to search for and retrieve the remains of some MIA’s.
We found them.
The battlefield had been cleaned up pretty good by both sides.
We found a scattering of stuff and I noticed the remains of one NVA soldier near the “Ant Hill” that sheltered
the command post during the battle.
left out, four missing troops from the LZ X-Ray battle Nov 14-16 1965.
Four missing troops from the 2/7, Landing Zone Albany Battle Nov 17-18 1965.
Hardback : We Were Soldiers Once and Young. Page 320-321.
“the 2/7 Battalion was still missing 4 troops, The 1/5, 1 troop.”
In April 6, 1966 The 3 Brigade commander, takes troops from 1/7th and goes back to the Ia Drang to LZ
The 3 Brigade Commander, only takes troops from the 1/7, the battle of LZ X-Ray 1 Platoon approx 44 troops,
No One in the 1/7, had seen the battle field at Landing Zone Albany, over estimated 1 mile long,estimated
over 100 yards wide.
The 3 Brigade commander takes no troops from the 2/7!
In a matter of minutes! after landing, we locate the remains of eight soldiers, all in one fifteen by twenty yard
piece of ground near the anthills in the center of the clearing find the missing troops! they were on the Landing
With that operation the 1st Cavalry Division balanced the books and CLOSED A SAD CHAPTER on the fight
at Landing Zone Albany
The 3 Brigade Commander flew back to LZ X-Ray not Landing Zone Albany.
A sad fact , The 3 Brigade Commander, Hal G. Moore, did not find all of the missing troops, there is sill one missing troop, A SP/4 HIEMER.
We Were Soldiers Once and young is Fiction only to these soldiers, Hal G. Moore, Reporter Joe Lee Galloway,
Vincent Cantu, Jack P. Smith, Larry Gwin, and George Forest.
all other troopers and Officers story’s in the book can not be disputed.
The truth about the Battles of the Ia Drang, LZ X-Ray Nov 14-16 1965 and the Battle of Landing Zone Albany
Nov 17-18 an 18 hour battle, which was a meeting engagement, it was not an ambush, The truth won’t come
out till 100 years from now, just like the Battle of the Little Big Horn did.
Page 18 of We Were Soldiers Once and Young
Hal G. Moore The 1/7 Battalion Commander,Including a 14 months combat tour in Korea.
FACT: The 1/7 Battalion Commander’s Combat experience in the Korean War 16 Days in K company.
Fact: The 1/7 Battalion Commander, claimed a 14 month combat tour in Korea.
The Truth to get prompted to Major, The 1/7 Battalion Commander, had to spend time in a combat unit to get
promoted, the Division Commander, placed him in Command of K company, an Infantry unit for 16 days, so he
sat in trench,Bunker on the MLR for 16 Days.
FACT: 1/7 Battalion Commander’s Combat experience, Korean War 16 Days K company, 12 days in
Command of the regiments Heavy Mortars, 6 months S-3, a desk job, 6 months Division Assistant G-3, a desk
The 2/7 Battalion Commander’s Lt. Col Robert A. McDade’s Combat experience, WW 2 in the Pacific, a
Platoon Leader, duration of the War, Korean War 12 months Company Commander.
Page 17-18 The 1/7 Battalion Commander had never commanded a Battalion before, he was suppose to take
a 5 day Battalion Commander refresher course before taking command, he didn’t he took Command of his
Battalion on Monday and then went to the field.
1/7 Battalion Commander was Attached to the 11 Air assault 1964.
2/7 Battalion Commander Lt. Col Robert A. McDade, assigned to the 11 Air assault 1963.
10 days before the Battles of the Ia Drang, Lt. Col Robert A. McDade became the 2/7 ‘s Battalion
Lt. Col. Robert A. McDade had never Commanded a Battalion before.
Lt. Col. Robert A. McDade’s Battalion the 2/7, was nickle and dime, when the 1/7 Battalion Commander who
didn’t know Airmobile tactics, messed up as he didn’t know what he was doing and had to call for
reinforcements, and who’s unit did they call on? Lt. Col. Robert A. McDade’s Battalion the 2/7.
Before the battle was over the were 4 Battalion’s on LZ X-Ray.
Russell l. Ross
1741 Maysong ct
San Jose,ca 95131
Joe Lee Galloway purloined, Ernie Pyle’s and Bill Mauldin’s quotes!
Joe Lee Galloway used the works of Ernie Pyle to write his book We Were Soldiers Once and Young.
page 59 We Were Soldiers Once and young, It was a Sunday,I didn’t realize that;
From Ernie’s War page 8, troops never know when Sunday comes.
page 326 They don’t know when Sunday comes.
He used Bill Mauldin’s books also.
Page 16 Bill Mauldin , there are no bad units,only bad Officers
UNGER: So it‘s your contention this is about leadership, then.
Joe Lee GALLOWAY: It always is. There are no bad units, there are no bad soldiers, there are only bad leaders.
Joe Lee Galloway wants American Soldiers prosecuted.
Joe Lee Galloway a Reporter was not supposed to carry weapons.
Joe Lee Galloway carried a stolen M-16 rifle and 400 round of stolen ammo.
Joe Lee Galloway was a Serial Killer in Vietnam and should be charged with Murder.
Joe Lee Galloway bragged about killing enemy troops, during his 4 tours in Vietnam
Joe Lee Galloway: And discipline can break down, not just one time.
There wasn‘t just one My Lai in Vietnam.
There were other incidents, there were other things like this.
Civilians are in the middle.
They get caught in this, and then, you know, there are accidental ways that they get hurt.
But to go and murder them, because you have snapped, is unconscionable.
You know, it has to be investigated, it has to be prosecuted.
This is a clear violation of the law of war, the rules of engagement.
We don‘t do this.
We‘re not supposed to do this.
So Joe Lee Galloway should be charged with MURDER.
Page 33 Bill Mauldin’s UP FRONT ” I cant git no lower,Willie, me BUTTONS get in the way.
Page 28 Soldier of Fortune If You Want a Good Fight About this time I was busy trying to see just how flat I could
make myself and cursing the “BUTTONS” on my fatigue jacket for costing me the edge.
Were you destined to be a war reporter?
Quote: Joe Lee Galloway”I had read Ernie Pyle’s columns and his collected work and I thought if a war comes
along in my generation, I want to cover it. And preferably as Pyle covered his war.”
Vietnam 1965, In Vietnam Joe Lee Galloway mimicked Ernie Pyle, everything Ernie Pyle had done in WW 2,
Joe Lee Galloway had the means to copy Ernie Pyle, as he had all Ernie Pyle book’s to plagiarize from.
JOSEPH LEE GALLOWAY, is A PLAGIARIST, A LIAR AND A CONMAN.
Return to Hollywood: We Were Soldiers Once — But in Which War?
We Were Soldiers (#7789) by Russell L. Ross on January 30, 2003 at 2:24 PM
Reviewer: Russell L. Ross
[email protected] from San Jose, CA
Fiction: We Soldiers Once and Young, LZ X-Ray.
Fiction only to the 1/7 Battalion Commander and Joe Lee Galloway, Vincent Cantu, Jack P. Smith, Larry Gwin
and George Forrest.
The other stories of the Officers, enlisted troops of the battalion cant be disputed.
Are the 1/7 Battalion Commander and Rambo the Reporter Joe Lee Galloway, hero’s?
Pages are from the hardback, of We Soldiers Once and Young.
The 1/7 Battalion Commander was the Col. Klink of the war, He knew nothing, nothing.
The 1/7 Battalion Commander” there were no training texts or manuals in Air Assault tactics.
But there were Manuals, and texts.”
1950’s FM 57-35 Army Transport Aviation-Combat Operations.
1963 FM 57-35 Airmobile Operations.
FM 7-20 the Battalion Commanders hand book.
FM 1-100 ARMY AVIATION 1963.
1/7 Battalion commander Nov 14 – 16 1965 LZ X-Ray, “It wasn’t Bruce Crandall’s job to haul out wounded.
Bruce Crandall it wasn’t my job to haul out wounded!
FM 1-100 ARMY AVIATION 1963.
D. When Helicopter Ambulances are not available, other Helicopter may be utilized.
All FM’s, Manuals are kept in all of the company’s and Battalion orderly rooms.
By Officers he worked with? in 1957.
Nope the 1/7 Battalion Commander was in a different section of the R&D, the 1/7 Battalion Commander was in
the Air Force Division, developing new airborne equipment and synchronizing Army- Air Force requirements for
It had nothing to do with Air assault ( Helicopters or tactics.)
In 1957 the first Air Assault Manual was written, and the 1/7 Battalion Commander knew nothing about it.
1/7 Battalion Commander in 1957 “I was in on the concept of Airmobility with Gavin, Norton, Seneff Williams”.
With 2 1/2 years writing, 1 1/2 years training in Airmobile tactics in the 11 Air Assault Division Test,
for a total of 4 years and yet he retained nothing about Airmobile tactics.
Page 41 The 1/7 Battalion Commander new concepts & techniques were written in the 1950’s FM 57-35 Army
Transport Aviation-Combat Operations, 1963 FM 57-35 Airmobile Operations.
The 1/7 Battalion Commander “I had been thinking about a new technique for the initial lift.”
There are only two types of Air assaults. This is the 1st one.
The 1/7 Battalion Commander is under the delusion he had come up with a new technique.
The 1/7 Battalion Commander was the only one in the Airborne branch, Air assault is a different meaning.
Bruce Crandall ” The 1/7 Battalion Commander wanted Aviation present, to be part of his Staff”.
The 1/7 Battalion Commander , Bruce Crandall or his ALO had to coordinate the flight time from Plei Me to X-
Ray, flight routes, fire support, resupply and the Med evac Huey and Gunships Huey.
The 1/7 Battalion Commander couldn’t plan the operation with out Bruce Crandall or his ALO ( aviation ) present.
Page 60 As Bruce Crandall flared the Huey to land at Landing Zone X-Ray The 1/7 Battalion Commander & his
troops starts firing their weapons.
FM 57-35: There is no firing from the helicopter during flight, landing or any other time.
Pity the troop to their right a face full of hot brass, left ear drums ringing, brass on floor or getting caught in the
Huey’s controls, 1/7 Battalion Commander who had been listening to the battle of Landing Zone Albany on the
radio volunteer, for the 1st Battalion 7th Cavalry to go to Columbus to guard the artillery,
So the 2nd Battalion 5th Cavalry could go and reinforce Landing Zone ALBANY.
MYTHS of The Ia Drang Valley: Some Officers even Kinnard stated that the 1/7 Battalion commander volunteer
to go into Landing Zone ALBANY, but he didn’t. and from Persons in the book That 1/7 Battalion Commander
and Joe Lee Galloway write good about give in return and adds to the myths about the 1/7 and 1/7 Battalion
One Reporter Bob Poos of Soldier of Fortune writes that the 1/7 Battalion Commander and the 1st Battalion 7th
Cavalry was the ones who relived the Plie me camp on Oct 24,1965
Soldier of Fortune March 83 page 29-30 ARVN AMBUSH 3rd column last 2 paragraphs. Plei Me did get relief-
with a vengeance- from the 1st Cavalry Division.
Through a strange coincidence, the camp commander, Capt Harold Moore,Learned later that much of the relief
force was commanded by a name sake, Battalion Commander of the 1st Battalion 7th Cavalry.
When in fact it was my old unit the 2nd Battalion 8th Cavalry.
Capt George Forrest when he spoke to the Old Guard said 1/7 Battalion Commander, was there in the 11 Air
Assault Division in 1963.
So starts the myths about Battalion Commander of the 1/7 and the 1st Battalion 7th Cavalry.
The 1/7 Battalion commander’s idea, would cost time because the 1st Battalion 7th Cavalry would have to be to
LZ Columbus 4 hours, then the 2nd Battalion 5th Cavalry would have to be flown to Landing zone Albany another
4 hours. 8 hours to reinforce Landing Zone Albany?
So why didn’t Kinnard send the 1st Battalion 7th Cavalry to reinforce ALBANY?
They were too drunk? they had spent the day of the 17 in the Bars of Pleiku.
Page 205-206 The 1/7 Battalion Commander, Bruce Crandall and Jon Mills, went into a Officers Bar, when they
wouldn’t serve the 1/7 Battalion commander, all three threatened to wipe out the Bar, if they weren’t served.
The most outrageous LIE
Page 287 At Landing Zone Albany, There on the dying enemy soldier something shiny. A big battered old
French army Bugle.
FACT: This Bugle was captured at Landing Zone X-Ray and brought into Landing Zone Albany by the
reinforcements, B company 2/7.
Leadership Principle 1
Be Technically and Tactically Proficient To know you job thoroughly, you must posses not only specific knowledge
of its details but also a broad general knowledge concerning its area of interest. You should be competent in
combat operations and training as well as in the technical and administrative aspects of your duties.
If you demonstrate deficiencies in these functions,your subordinates will lose confidence in you as a leader.
Moore is under the delusion he has come up with a new Air Assault tactic for the 1st lift, would doom his men.
for the want of a nail, The 2nd Battalion 7th Cavalry.
As the Battle of Landing Zone X-Ray would grind up,The Troops, Helicopters and Artillery.
Making them unavailable for other units.
Leading to the walk to Landing Zone Albany by the 2/7.
It would appear the 1/7 Battalion Commander would be the first one chosen by Kinnard for the 11 AIr Assault
test, When it started up in 1963, but he wasn’t.
He the 1/7 Battalion Commander had To write a letter to Major General Kinnard, ( His Old Boss ) begging for a
Infantry Battalion in the 11 Air Assault Division.
It wasn’t till 1964, 1 year after it started he got the call.
He didn’t get one with the 11 Air Assault but instead was given a Infantry Battalion in the 2 infantry Division.
The 2nd Battalion 23rd Infantry, which was attached to the 11 Air Assault in 1964.
The 1/7 Battalion Commander, Had never commanded a Infantry Battalion before.
But one of the hand picked officers by Kinnard in 1963 was Lt. Col. Robert A. McDade, He was chosen for the G-
1 spot, He would be given command of the 2nd Battalion 7th Cavalry around November 7,1965, approximately
10 days before the battle of Landing Zone Albany.
Lt. Col. Robert A. McDade, Had never Commanded a Infantry Battalion before.
There was another factor, the 1/7 Battalion commander and Lt. Col Robert A. McDade, were having a power
As Lt. Col Robert A. McDade was chosen for the 11 Air assault in 1963, when it started, he was one of the first
Officers ask for by Kinnard.
The 1/7 Battalion commander, had to write a letter to Kinnard, begging for a battalion in the 11 Air Assault,
quote the 1/7 Battalion commander ” I was fighting for a Battalion command.”was he about to be kicked out the
Army? as the 1/7 Battalion Commander had said the same thing about Lt. Col. Robert A. McDade ,getting the
Lt. Col. Robert A. McDade had more combat experience then 1/7 Battalion commander in combat.
Lt. Col. Robert A. McDade WW 2 , Pacific a Platoon Leader duration of the War, Korean War a Company
Commander for 12 months, The Vietnam War made him a three War Veteran, A 2nd star on his CIB.
1/7 Battalion Commander claim’s 14 months of combat command in Korea.
But only did 16 days in Command of K company, and 12 days in command of the regiments heavy mortars, 6
months S-3 a desk job, 6 months Division Assistant G-3, a desk job.
From the book Hal Moore A Soldier Once … and Always
Summer 1952, major offenses had ended, War devolved into a stalemate.
1 week on the MLR. what he did there unknown.
12 days in Command of the regiment’s Heavy mortars 2,800 yards behind the MLR. fine chow, dry place to sleep
cot and all, bunkers can take 122 mm artillery, spent lots of time with troops on MLR
went to S-3 regimental
He had to have combat command Rifle Platoon or company to get promoted to Major.
The Division Commander flew his chopper to see 1/7 Battalion commander , he told the 1/7 Battalion
commander to tell Col. Hardick to forward his promotion papers, he would send them and the 1/7 Battalion
commander down to command a rifle company.
Feb 4,1953 The 1/7 Battalion commander, now a Major has to spend 16 days in command of k company.
After 16 days in command of K company, the Division Commander then pulled him out K Company, so he can be
the Division Assistant G-3.
Division life, for the 1/7 Battalion Commander, The Staff officer mess had full service bar, every night after dinner
they watched movies in division movie house.
Keep abreast of current military developments. 1/7 Battalion commander “I thought up a new technique for the
There are only two types of Air assaults.
1/7 Battalion commander is under the delusion he had come up with a new technique.
The ground Commander the 1/7 Battalion commander must consider two general types of Airmobile Assault
when preparing the ground tactical plan.
These types of assaults differ primarily in the proximity of the Landing Z one to the assault objective
The first and preferred type is the landing of the assault echelons immediately on, or adjacent to, the objective.
The second type of assault involves landing a distance from the objective in a secure Landing Zone, and
requires assembly, reorganization, and movement to an attack position prior to the assault on the objective.
Custer and 1/7 Battalion commander
Some similar characteristics of the 1/7 Battalion commander and Custer.
When no one wrote about them, They wrote their own Books.
Both were considered too Flamboyant, by fellow officers. And not well liked.
George Armstrong Custer ( His men called him yellow hair ) Commander of the 1st Battalion 7th Cavalry at the
battle of the Little Bighorn.
The Indians would wipe Custer’s command of 1st Battalion 7th Cavalry out to a man.
Starting the Indian wars,
The UNITED STATES would unite and almost wipe out all the Indians, taking their lands and putting them on
1/7 Battalion commander ( His men called him yellow hair ) Commander 1st Battalion 7th Cavalry at the
battle of Landing Zone X-Ray November the 14,1965 Pleiku Provenance of South Vietnam.
1/7 Battalion commander’s men, with help from the reinforcement’s ( B co 2/7 the 2/5 and 1/5 ) saves Landing
Starting the Vietnam war.
Which almost tears the United States apart.
Both Battles ( The Little Bighorn ) and ( Landing Zone X-Ray ) were fought by the 1st Battalion 7th Cavalry.
On a Sunday, In a Valley, By a River, In tall Grass and near a Large Mountain or Hill top.
Both Commanders were told the size of the enemy troops. By their Scouts.
But didn’t believe them. Scout to Custer “There is a very very large Indian camp down there.” Custer “Where I
don’t see any camp”
Intelligence Lieutenant to 1/7 Battalion commander “There is 1,500 troops a PAVN Regiment near the Chu Pong
1/7 Battalion commander that didn’t really bother me.
Both the Commanders wanted to force the Enemy to stand and fight.
As the enemy’s tactics were hit and run.
Custer in the lead charges into the valley his troops behind. to cut off the Indians, So they couldn’t escape
on to the plains.
The 1/7 Battalion Commander in the lead Huey charges in to the Ia Drang Valley, his troop behind, would be the
first one on Landing Zone
X-Ray, hoping the North Vietnamese or the Viet Cong wouldn’t escape in to the mountains and into Cambodia.
Both would get their wish.
The Indians and North Vietnamese would send 1,000 or more men out to meet the 1st Battalion 7th Cavalry.
The Commanders then realized that the size of the enemy forces was true.
Their scouts were right They were out numbered.
Both battles were defensive. After the initial charge by the 1st Battalion 7th Cavalry would
pull back, Circle the wagons and let the enemy throw them selves at their defense’s.
Custer didn’t have reinforcements, It would take time to get them, His supplies were miles behind him.
Custer’s command of 1st Battalion 7th Cavalry was wiped out to the man.
1/7 Battalion commander I didn’t have that problem “I had something Custer didn’t, Reinforcements with in
But the 1/7 Battalion Commander forgot to lay on supplies and water for his troops.
The 1/7 Battalion Commander’s Men with the help of the Reinforcements ( B co 2/7 2/6 1/5 ) save Landing Zone
X-Ray. starting the Vietnam War.
It would almost destroy the United States.
Their Troops, FOUGHT VALIANTLY.
What happened to 1/7 Battalion Commander’s H-hour. the 1/7 Battalion Commander gets his H- hour confused
with the Attack time in the mission order.
H-hour in air assault terms is defined as the time the lead helicopter touches down on the Landing Zone.
The 1/7 Battalion Commander puts the H-hour at H-1030. He then gets word the Artillery cant fire until H-1017.
H-hour get delayed.
So that should make the new H-hour, H-1100 hrs.
1/7 Battalion Commander ( who is in the lead Huey ) set’s foot on LZ X- Ray at H-1048, approximately 13
minutes early. From 1017 hrs, there is 37 minutes of artillery fire and LZ X-Ray is getting 20 minutes
The 1/7 Battalion Commander couldn’t READ a MAP?
November 9, 1965 1/7 Battalion Commander “What does the RED STAR that is on the intelligence map mean?”
The Red Star is not a military symbol, its explanation should have been on the lower right side ( margin )
of the map.
1/7 Battalion Commander ” I had no doubt the 1/7 my Battalion would be chosen to mount the attack into the Ia
Drang as the 2/7 had a new commander.
Fact! ” the 1/7 was closer to the objective then the 2/7 ” and had nothing to do with the readiness of the
Battalions. (Gen.John J Tolson).
FM 57-35, Key personnel are distributed among the aircraft of the lift, so the loss of one aircraft does not
destroy the command structure.
The whole Command Group in the same Huey.
The 1/7 Battalion Commander and all of his command group and Bruce Crandall were are all in the same Huey.
The lift is flying at 110 knots. FM 57-35 When different types of aircraft fly in a single lift, cruising speed of
the slower aircraft must be the controlling speed of the lift.
UH-1 B’s are Gunships fly at 80 knots UH-1 D’s are Slicks and fly at 110 knots.
I ask B co’s 1/7 3rd Platoon Leader Dennis Deal, why didn’t 1/7 Battalion Commander, Didn’t lay on water for his
men, as B Co would be on the Landing Zone for over 4 hours and why he said it was not the Aviation’s job to
haul out Wounded Troops?
B co’s 1/7 3rd Platoon Leader Dennis Deal “don’t ask me I knew nothing about Airmobile tactics.”
1/7 Battalion Commander ” we needed water, medical supplies and ammo.”
B co 1/7 3rd Platoon Leader Dennis Deal by 3 p.m. we ran out of water, the wounded kept begging for water.
November 15, 1965 at 6:20 a.m. Jemison shared his last drops of water.
November 14, 1965, While all day long the Battalion Supply Officer was riding in and out of X-Ray, 240# of water,
medical, ammo not coming in, 1 Wounded troop not going out.
1/7 battalion Commander “hauling Wounded was not the slick crews job” ( Aviation )
FM 7-20 the Battalion Commanders handbook, Hauling wounded is the secondary mission of all military aircraft.
FM 7-20 page 271 paragraph 313 returning aircraft may be used for the evacuation of casualties.
Page 63, The 1/7 Battalion Commander, used his command Huey to haul out a non wounded POW.
Page 167, but none his wounded troops, Lt Franklin terribly wounded was set aside to die.
FM 1-100 Army Aviation, The Command and Control Huey is to be used for Command and Control ONLY it
shouldn’t be used for any other purpose, like RESUPPLY.
a Medevac Huey was suppose to fly with the assault echelon. ( 1st Lift )
Bruce Crandall was suppose to lay on the Medevac Huey.
Joe Lee Galloway “chases “a 17 year old, wounded trooper “away” from the Aid Station!
a wounded troop was stumbling toward the aid station, Joe Lee Galloway ” stay away go back” what was this 17
year old’s thoughts, 25 feet from the aid station and treatment and told to stay away?
FM 57-35 page 12 paragraph 24 supply 6 miscellaneous. a. probable water supply points are predesignated.
and comes in with the following echelon.
Joe Lee Galloway had no military service.
1/7 Battalion Commander “we had never maneuvered in combat as a battalion”
1/7 Battalion Commander ” the Battalion made 2 sweeps near An Khe.”
1/7 Battalion Commander “We shuttled the Battalion in 16 Huey’s”
Nov 9: 1965 Joe Lee Galloway “My first time out with the 1/7 Battalion Commander.”
Original story Solider of Fortune November 83, Page 25 Nov 9,
Joe Lee Galloway “before night fall the 1/7 Battalion Commander, waved his battalion across a stream”
LZ X-Ray Nov 14-16, 1965
Each Huey could carry 10 Troops, 10 troops X 16 Huey’s = 160 Troops per lift.
a enemy base camp.
a radio transmission intercepted, estimated a N V regiment was near X-Ray.
Commo wire was seen.( telephone wire )
the 1/7 Battalion Commander, puts only 80 men (5 per Huey) in the initial lift.
riflemen to carry extra ammo all they could carry.
Air Assault tactics emphasize maximum initial lift, to get maximum lift each Huey carries
minimum amount of fuel + 30 min reserve, with refueling & ammo Points near the Pickup Zone.
Troops only basic load of ammo and web gear (entrenching tool, 2 canteens, bayonet and poncho and 1st aid
pack, in side of the 1 aid pack is a burn packet )
1/7 Battalion Commander “later lifts could carry more men 100 as fuel burned off”.
Rear area Operation Officer Dick Merchant “the Huey could carry 10 men”
Winkle”I had a total of 16 men in my Huey”.
Fourner “it was left up to each pilot how many men he carried” on later lifts I was carrying 9-12 troops.
How it should have happened according to Air Assault Tactics FM 57-35
With only 16 Huey’s weight is a factor, so the initial lift ( the assault echelon ) must contain sufficient Troops to
secure the Landing Zone.
The Allowable Cargo Load the ( ACL ) of each UH-1D for this mission should have been 3,000 pounds as its
under 50 nautical miles ( only 14.3 miles to the objective ) using the Space method, a space is defined as the
weight of a fully combat equipped troop ( 240 pounds ) 10 Troops , 10 X 240 = 2,400 pounds, 10 troops per
B co 114 troops, A co 40 troops, Ground Commanders command group 6 for a total of 160 troops in the 1st lift.
Was the 1/7 Battalion Commander a Pilot? Not in the year 1965.
Bruce Crandall ( The Aviation Commander ) is starting the Huey from the left seat the co-pilot seat,
There is no starter on that side.
The 1/7 Battalion Commander as they load the Huey’s “what is the flying time from Plei Me to Landing Zone X-
Ray”? 14.3 miles.
The 1/7 Battalion Commander and Bruce Crandall plan an Air Assault.
With a time table & failed to put down the flying time from Plei Me to Landing Zone X- Ray, with out this
information, How did they plan the Assault?
Mills 13 min 15 sec.
Speed ( rate ) 110 knots this time will take them 25 miles away.
The correct time is 8 min. Formula for Time is Distance X 60 divide by Rate ( Speed ) 14.3 X 60 = 858 divide by
110 = 7.8 min = 8 min, time is rounded up to the nearest min.
Formula for Distance is rate ( Speed ) X time divided by 60 110 X 8 = 880 divide by 60 = 14.6 miles =
15 miles miles is rounded up to the nearest 1/2 mile.
U sing 7.8 min for time for the distance 110 X 7.8 = 858 divide by 60 = 14.3 miles.
The distance from Plei Me to Landing Zone X-Ray.
A blazing flare under an unopened parachute hit the ammo dump, the Sgt.Major Basil L. Plumley grabbed it with
his bare hands, it burns at 4,000 degrees, the smoke is toxic, it needs the parachute to lite the candle.
no parachute, no blazing flare, and what about the explosive bolt on the flare?
Page 58 hardback,
The 1/7 Battalion Commander as they land at X-Ray. As Bruce Crandall flared the Huey to land I ( the 1/7
Battalion Commander ) FIRED a burst into the brush to the LEFT, toward the mountain.( In the Movie We Were
Soldiers, the 1/7 Battalion Commander gets out of the Huey on the right side, If the 1/7 Battalion Commander
fired to the left, he would fire through the Huey Cabin! )
Joe Lee Galloway FICTION
http://www.biggolddog.com/photos.htm The photographs offered are from the personal collection of Joe Lee
Galloway ( Rambo the Reporter ) and were taken at LZ X-Ray during and after the action in the Ia Drang
Valley, November 14-16, 1965. The images reflect the savagery of the combat, a feel for the emotions of the
soldiers involved and a sense for the terrain in which the battle was fought. The photographs have never
before been published and most have been seen only by a handful of participants in the action. ( Actually
some pictures have been published and seen by over 1 million people ) These images will help put a real
face on the people, places and events in the upcoming movie, “We Were Soldiers Once…And Young”,
starring Mel Gibson. A film based on the book of the same name by the 1/7 Battalion Commander and Joe ( Lee
Galloway ). Ia Drang Scholarship Fund…. As a lasting tribute to the men of the 1st of the 7th Cavalry who gave
so much in the Ia Drang, a permanent scholarship fund was established for the children and grandchildren of
those who died in action in this heroic event. To honor that commitment, “10%” of the purchase price of every Joe
Lee Galloway at the Ia Drang photo will be donated to the fund. ( Only 10%! )
Stories of Fiction, Joe Lee Galloway embellished for the U.S. NEWS and World Report
Pg 32 Fatal Victory
Pg 36 Vietnam Story.
ARTICLES Galloway Plagiarized U.S. News and World Report Oct 25, 93
Page 45, Step by Step into a Quagmire SOURCE: Stanley Karnow’s Vietnam a History, Pages 479-485.
U.S. News and World Report Feb 4,1991 Page 49 “Who’s Afraid of the truth”
SOURCE: Soldier of Fortune Dec 84 Pg 104 Press Escorts by Fred Tucker. ( TUCKERS GORILLAS ).
In the movie Gibson portray Galloway as a Reporter who pick’s up a weapon only to protect
the wounded. BUT!!! Joe Lee Galloway was the most heavy armed Reporter in Vietnam.
Below is FICTION by Joe Lee Galloway
Joe Lee Galloway was not at the Plei Me Camp, Joe Lee Galloway flew over the Plei Me Camp on the 24 Oct
Page 32 Joseph L. Galloway Had wrangled a ride in to the Plei Me camp while it was under siege, and because
of the shortages of fighters found him self assigned to a .30 cal light machine gun.
With two other reporters.
After the battle was over Major Charles Beckwith hands Galloway an M-16 rifle, Joe Lee Galloway told Beckwith,
Strictly speaking, under the Geneva Convention he was “A civilian noncombatant.”
As you see there is no logic. Joe Lee Galloway has just spent 3 days manning a .30 cal machine gun 24/7 killing
PAVN troops and after the battle is over decides he is a civilian noncombatant?
The question is why didn’t Joe Lee Galloway join the service?
He was always to busy playing Soldier instead of being a Reporter. He wanted to be at any battle he could get to,
to record it, But when he get’s there at the battle. He start’s to play Soldier.
You cant write or record History, While you busy playing soldier.
Of all the reporters in Vietnam, Joe Lee Galloway was the most dangerous, to the American troops,
in His Walter Mitty and Rambo persona. He Joe Lee Galloway had no idea what the soldier’s job was.
He Joe Lee Galloway as a reporter and could do what he wanted and go where he wanted to at any time.
Joseph L. Galloway ( Rambo the Reporter ) ROAMED all over VIETNAM, Killing as he pleased.
Fiction: November 13,1965 Joe Lee Galloway hitched a ride from Pleiku to Catecka the 3 Brigade headquarters
Joe Lee Galloway ” I dug a foxhole out on the perimeter with B company 1/7, Under one of those $50.00 tea
bushes, set out some spare! magazines ( M-16 ).
Joe Lee Galloway playing Soldier, It would have been better if he said I set out some spare film rolls. to record
events, his mind set is playing soldier.
Fact: Joe Lee Galloway was at Pleiku on the 14 Nov 1965, as Joe Lee Galloway spent the whole day of the 14
with Gen Knowles, who’s Command post was at Pleiku, Kinnard and Joe Lee Galloway flew over the LZ X-Ray
Battle, in Kinnard’s Huey, they were there over LZ X-Ray, when the Sky Raider Crashed.
Everything Joe Lee Galloway said happened at Catecka, on the 13 -14 Nov 1965 till around 9:00 p.m. on the 14
Nov 1965 is fiction.
Joe Lee Galloway writes: ” At first lite I pinched of a small piece of C-4 explosive from the emergency supply in
my pack and used it to boil up a canteen cup of water for coffee.
Walter Mitty part. quote Joe Lee Galloway “If you lit C-4 very carefully you could be drinking hot coffee in maybe
If you were careless, it blew your arm off.
If Joe Lee Galloway was so eager to receive the Bronze Star, Then he should be ready to pay the price for
violating the UCMJ. ( Uniform Code Military Justice )
Conspiring to take, an over a million Dollar Helicopter and receiving Military equipment, 1 M-16 Rifle, 1 Carl
I had to sign for all my equipment as all soldiers did and they had to turn it in when I left.
Who did Joe Lee Galloway leave the M-16 with?
Does he have papers saying he turned it in?
The same with the Carl Gustaf, Where did he get it?
Did he buy it, Pick it up on the Battlefield?
Did he sell it when he left?
If he turned it in, Does he have the paper work to show it?
Fact: all enemy equipment taken on the battlefield belongs to the U.S.A. Army.
Joe Lee Galloway conspired with a friend ( A Huey Pilot ) into flying into Plei Me camp.
There were orders for all aircraft to stay out of the area,
The friend went AWOL, He and Joe Lee Galloway took the Huey and flew into Plei Me, Major Charles needed,
medical, and ammo.
At Plei Me, Major Charles Beckwith put Joe Lee Galloway and 2 other Reporters on a machinegun.
had given Joe Lee Galloway an M-16 Rifle.
Fiction: Page 156- 157 Vincent Cantu and Joe Lee Galloway meet during fierce attack on D and C
Joe Lee Galloway was taking pictures.
Vincent Cantu braved the fire and sprinted to where Joe Lee Galloway was.
TRUTH: Soldier of Fortune Sept 83
Page 28, Joe Lee Galloway writes “During a ( LULL! ).” I met Vincent Cantu this was before the (Skyhawk)
napalmed the Command post.
MYTH’s: Page 35
Joe Lee Galloway “The plantation billed the U.S. $50 for each tea bush and $250 for each rubber tree.”
TRUTH: Soldier of Fortune Sept 83
Joe Lee Galloway “They billed U.S.$25 for each tea bush $125 for each rubber tree.”
Joe Lee Galloway only left the safety of the Command Post During ” LULL’s” in the Battle,
As soon as the firing started up, Joe Lee Galloway would headed right back to the Command post.
Russell L. Ross [email protected] from San Jose, CA
Sorry made a goof, the page number is 150 not 105
Page 150. of we were Soldiers Once and Young.
Joe Lee Galloway “chases “a 17 year old, wounded trooper “away” from the Aid Station!a wounded troop was stumbling toward the aid station, Joe Lee Galloway ” stay away go back” what was this 17 year old’s thoughts, 25 feet from the aid station and treatment and told to stay away?