A CORNER OF VIETNAM DMZ
Kaylin last edited by Kaylin
Taking Vietnam DMZ tour, you will not forget the historic battlefield sites including Vinh Moc Tunnels, Ho Chi Minh Trail, Khe Sanh Base, DaKrong Bridge, Rockpile, Lang Vei Special Forces Camp. However, the most important site that you shouldn’t miss is Hien Luong Bridge over Ben Hai River in central Vietnam where take you to the most fierce battle in Vietnam war history.
After the Geneva Agreements was signed in 1954, the 17th Parallel (where Hien Luong bridge cross Ben Hai River) was chosen as a borderline to divide Vietnam into 2 areas: North and South. Hien Luong Bridge therefore was divided into two parts, each side was 89m long. The North area consists of 450 wood panels and the South side had 444 sheets. This division last for 21 years with the great struggle for national independence and freedom.
With Vietnamese people, the red flag with the yellow star is a symbol of patriotism and the strong will to fight for independence, freedom and reunification. Therefore, October 8, 1954, we raised the first flagpole with 12m high, right next to Hien Luong Bridge on the north. Then, the southern government also quickly raised their flag on the roof of Xuan Hoa bunker with 15m high. Not letting flag shorter than the enemy's flag, the soldiers at the north found a wooden tree with 18m high to make the flagpole, on the top is a flag with the 24m square wide. Since then, the "flag fighting" (choi co) battle took place for many years. The peak was in 1962 when the northern government required the Vietnam Machinery Corporation to process a flagpole to use in Hien Luong. This new flagpole is 38.6m high, with a flag of 134m square wide and 15kg weigh and be the highest and largestone in Vietnam. According to statistics, from May 19, 1956 to October 8, 1967, we had hung 267 flags with many different sizes, the flag pole was broken 11 times because of US bombs.
The country division scheme was also expressed through the bridge painting. To creat the image of separation, the northern government painted blue color in the southern half of the bridge. But with the intention of "unifying nation", right in that night, our troops painted another half of the bridge with the same color to blend one. Hien Luong bridge always changes color. But whenever the enemy paints a different color to create two opposing colors, we immediately repaint it into a common color. At the present time, you can see the restored Hien Luong bridge with two different colors of blue and yellow in each half of bridge. You can also have chance to see Hien Luong museum where displays all historical images and evidences as well as showing the bravery and determination of the Vietnamese people during devision period from 1954-1975.
Hien Luong bridge has become a historical evidence during separating period and also witnessed the loss and pain. It became a great symbol of the everlasting desire for peace, national unification and reunion of all Vietnamese families and people. Nowadays, when visiting this site, you will see the statue of "Desire for a Unified Country" on the southern bank with the image of a young woman and her son waiting for her husband and other loved ones to return home as the way to remember the painful but very heroic past creating the glorious pages in Vietnam history.
So, there is no reason to deny Vietnam DMZ tour where you can visit the heart of the conflict zone during the Vietnam War and have unique view into Vietnam’s past and present.