Vietnam in HD looks at the early months of the Vietnam war from the escalation following the Gulf of Tonkin incident to the grim fighting of the Battle of Ia Drang where a few hundred American soldiers are pinned down by three battalions of North Vietnamese infantry. Using superior air power and reinforcements, the Americans fight the North Vietnamese to a draw.
American troops launch widespread "search and destroy" operations; body count, not territory, becomes the measure of success in Vietnam. Charles Brown fights for survival on the bloody slopes of Hill 875 and at home, the American public begins to question U.S. military strategy.
The enemy gains ground when the massive Tet Offensive catches the Americans by surprise. At Khe Sanh and Pleiku, U.S. troops are under siege. Americans mount a counteroffensive but the shock of the assault ignites anti-war fervor at home.
The turmoil of 1968 helps Nixon win the presidency. Troop strength in Vietnam peaks and the draft accelerates. Karl Marlantes endures bitter jungle fighting on Hill 484, and draftee Arthur Wiknik gets a grim introduction to combat on "Hamburger Hill". But shortly after "winning" both hills, US troops abandon them.
Troop withdrawals begin as the Americans train their ARVN allies to take over the war. Gery Benedetti patrols the hostile waters of the Mekong Delta. James Anderson leads a battalion into Cambodia after Nixon's controversial order. Don DeVore struggles to survive a fierce night attack, and Anne Purcell gets promising news about her husband.
Bob Clewell's helicopter crew comes under intense fire in one of the final operations of the war. Joe Galloway returns to Vietnam and in Washington, D.C., Barry Romo throws down his medals in protest. The last American troops return home and POW wife Anne Purcell awaits word of her husband's fate. The fall of Saigon brings the unification of Vietnam.