The whole pathos of the South East Asian war was illustrated Vietnam on Sunday (February 14) when our cameraman filmed a group of Laotian refugees who had fled from the Communists to South Vietnam -- only to be rejected by the South Vietnamese and United States Forces, who wanted to send them back to Laos and certain execution by the Communists.
SV Group of refugees sitting on ground talking to troops
CU Refugees talking to troops, one man makes throat cutting gesture
SV Refugees (2 shots)
CU Boy with cigarette
CU Woman drinking from bottle
MV Soldier gives sweets to children
CUs Laotian smoking (2 shots)
CU Lt. Heimbuck talks to reporter
CU Little girl eating sweets
SV Lt. Heimbuck gives sweets to children
SV Refugees sitting
SVs Refugees seated on ground
Initials SGM/2349 SGM/0039
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Background: The whole pathos of the South East Asian war was illustrated Vietnam on Sunday (February 14) when our cameraman filmed a group of Laotian refugees who had fled from the Communists to South Vietnam -- only to be rejected by the South Vietnamese and United States Forces, who wanted to send them back to Laos and certain execution by the Communists.
Fortunately, one United States Lieutenant persuaded higher authorities to accept the Laotians -- so saving their lives.
SYNOPSIS: These people, a small hill tribe of Laotian refugees who fled the Communists to what they thought was safety in South Vietnam, illustrate the whole pathos of the war in South East Asia.
Their nightmare began when the Communists attempted to draft them into their army. Other Laotians had already been shot for refusing --but these people refused anyway, and fled across the border -- after suffering not only Communist threats of execution, but the effects of United States bombing of Laos. They had seen their friends die -- at the hands of both sides.
Except for one United States army Lieutenant responsible for civic affairs, seen here, their troubles were not over when reached the Laos - South Vietnam border. For the Americans and their allies refused to accept them -- and wanted to return them to the Communists and certain death.
It was this Lieutenant who persuaded high command to reverse policy and accept the Laotians as genuine refugees. Whether this group of people know it or not, they almost certainly owe their lives to one man -- for he cared what happens to the innocent victims of war.