In Vietnam War, apart from the involvement of male soldiers, it is undeniable that female soldiers played a crucial role in this war. Even though they did not directly participated in fighting, but their duties during the war were very necessary. The Vietnam War witnessed the participations of both American and Vietnamese women, and even black servicemen. Their contribution was uncountable. During the war, women and black servicemen served as various jobs. They could be nurses, doctors, controllers of aircraft traffic, intelligence officers and other important positions in the hinterland and supported for the front line.
The contribution of American women in Vietnam War was significant. In early 1963, Operation Nightingale which was an accelerated attempt to appeal more nurses to serve in Vietnam. Most of nurses serving in the war were volunteers who largely came from middle class, and were born in families which had the tradition of working in military. Besides, a large number of women taking part in the war were white Catholics and Protestants. It is obvious that the importance of medical aid was always put in the top priorities in wars. Therefore, before coming to Vietnam to serve, American women had to join a specialized training course for four months. Owing to the number of women who participated in the war was limited, thus, the shift of each nurse was twelve hours per day, six days per week; they also had to suffer serious stress. At the beginning of Vietnam War when the war had not been expended, most of female American played no role in serving the military. They used to work in the domestic sphere. However, when the United States escalated in the war, women had a chance to prove their roles.
In Vietnam War, various positions were taken over by women from operating and processing equipment of complex data and documents to working as stenographers. In spite of being sent to the combat zones, they were prevented directly participating in fighting at the battlefield. Working in the environment with men dominating, women coped with a series of great challenges, and tensions in the matter of genders. It used to be thought that women took part in the war to boost the morale of men. However, the main purpose of women when joining the war was to contribute their real roles in the war as men did.
Different from female American, Vietnamese women in Vietnam War highly appreciated in when they took part in the war. They were assigned to the combat zones. They also were one of the main labor in operating and opening the Ho Chi Minh trail, serving as cooks in the hinterland to provide foodstuff for the troops, even “comfort women” for male communist soldiers. Vietnamese women, in addition, worked in the fields to produce more rice to provide Vietnamese civilians during the war. While other well-educated women worked as intelligence officers. In South Vietnam, many women were willing to participate in Women’s Armed Force Corps under the Army of the Republic of Vietnam. Meanwhile, other female Vietnamese worked as nurses, doctors in the battlefield and hospitals of the military. About black servicemen in Vietnam War, military personnel as African American were paid much attention. The blacks made up a great number when serving in the war. For instance, there are many clear examples about the participation of the African American soldiers in the war. These examples were printed and broadcasted in Wallace Terry’s journals. African Americans played an important part in the Vietnam War, as their well training and professionals.
Once again, the role of unnamed soldiers in Vietnam War is undeniable. They not only made great contributions in the battlefields of the war, but also did their good jobs in the hinterland to support for the front lines and achieve victories.