They are not your family tunnels, however a very complex network of tunnels which served as hospitals, living quarters, communication and provide routes, as well as storage areas for your weapons and food with the Viet Cong guerrillas. They were constructed without needing any sophisticated machines or tools only crude tools and human resilience. The Viet Cong guerrillas began building them on their resistance against french inside the late 1940s. Its original purpose was for communication between villages without getting detected from the French army. In 1960, however, Vietnam's National Liberation Front began excavating and lengthening the tunnels. The tunnel system was very strategic contributing to the victory of the North Vietnamese Army against the Americans.
Many of these secret tunnels were built underneath American bases. Its importance wasn't only limited to military purposes and also took over as the hub with the Vietnamese community life because the Americans burned and destroyed villages. Everything proceeded normally for the Vietnamese over these tunnels where lovers met, couples get married to, children attended school, and performances were held.
All had not been normal, needless to say. The Vietnamese were required to face the difficulties of living in cramped quarters where ants, scorpions, vermin, and poisonous centipedes thrive. Adding to that, they should ration everything because food, water, and in many cases air were scarce. Quite often, they only got out of the tunnels during the night to scavenge something that could be useful for the neighborhood whether they were supplies or food. When the Americans bombed and infiltrate villages, they'd to remain of these claustrophobic quarters for the purpose seemed like endless days. Those living conditions made sickness, especially malaria, rampant. In reality, it is the 2nd major reason behind death on the list of Vietnamese during that time. In addition ,, a lot of the tunnel inhabitants had serious installments of intestinal parasites.
While the Cu Chi tunnels was actually a haven to the Vietnamese, it had been a supply of frustration for your Americans. That they had tried various types of detection and infiltration that had been all a dysfunction. The American troops conducted large operations burning villages, bulldozing jungles, and destroying rice paddies. They deployed planes which sprayed chemicals to defoliate the areas burning it afterwards. Through every one of these offensive attacks, the Vietnamese guerrillas, combined with the rest of the villages, remained safe and secured inside their tunnels. Not surprisingly, only 6,000 Vietnamese from the original 16,000 tunnel inhabitants could survive after the war.
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