rumor of war

Topics: Vietnam War, United States Marine Corps, United States Pages: 9 (1623 words) Published: October 28, 2013


Rumor of War
By
Philip Caputo

Reading “Rumor of War” by Philip Caputo was a great read and very dramatic. Philip Caputo

makes the reader feel as if they are standing right beside him going through the same trials and

tribulations he was going through. The emotional roller coaster of emotions of war are very real. Philip

Caputo and his platoon will experience a variety of emotions.

Philip Caputo was your average 20 year old man growing up in a small prairie town,

Westchester, Illinois. Just like any other man growing up in this era had the same desires of proving

himself as a man. Listening to John F. Kennedy's famous inaugural address to the nation really

encouraged Philip Caputo wanting to prove himself as a man and defend his country. While attending

Loyola College he enlisted in the schools Reserve Officer Training for the Marines. After graduation

he attends Marine Boot Camp where he learns the history of the United States Marines, battle tactics

and basic weaponry Caputo wanted to go out and prove himself as a man and to get out of the

everyday life of a small town boy in Illinois. Boot camp was not easy for any new soldier; they were

tormented and pushed to a breaking point in order to make each of them a United States Marine. Philip

Caputo wanted to war to be over quickly so he could have all his friends slap him on the back and

welcome him home as a hero and ask about all the things he experienced, Caputo felt Communism in

Asia could and would end with brute force by the United States Marines. What he found though, was a

totally different world when he arrived in Vietnam. He was digging in the trenches fighting for his life

and it was a rude awakening for himself and many other young men who felt they were not told the

truth about the U.S.A's involvement.

Philip was with the Marine Corp and he received his first post as an officer in Okinawa, Japan

with a group of around 40 Marines in the Third Division. When he arrived he was caught off-guard as

he expected to be greeted by hard working soldiers that worked 24/7 on the battlefield but what he

found was soldiers by day and those same soldiers drinking with the prostitute's at night. Caputo found

Gary Lange

it difficult to fit in with his platoon they had trained and traveled with each other from the beginning;

he felt like a stranger in a strange land. He finally started to fit in and realized that his whole platoon

was tired of sitting around and that they were ready for action. In short he and his platoon would go to

Vietnam.

When they arrived in Vietnam was a surprise for many of them spent their first days packing

and piling sandbags and digging the foxholes that some would hold very close to their hearts. Philip

Caputo and his platoon thought they were going to war and were disappointed was manual labor and

stories of death also hearing gunfire. After a few weeks of building sandbags and foxholes the soldier's

attitudes started to change about the concept of war. Even-though the men were at company

headquarters they soon realized the reality of war is real and also very dangerous; they have still not

experienced life outside the headquarters and it will become clear what they are involved in. For over a

month the men continued the same old routine of digging foxholes and filling and piling sandbag. The

men started to become ill with a variety of ailments from diarrhea, malaria and dysentery the men sink

into a hug hole and it is filled with depression.

Their day finally comes and they are to relieve another platoon out in the field but yet they get

their and are told to wait longer. They waited for what seems an eternity and then all of a sudden their

spirits are lifted as their first combat is...
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