Vietnam: The Ten Thousand Day War, a 26-part Canadian television documentary on the Vietnam War, was produced in 1980 by Michael Maclear. The series aired in Canada on CBC Television, in the United States and in the United Kingdom on Channel 4. Maclear visited Vietnam during the production of the series and had access to film material there. He was the first Western journalist allowed to visit that area since the war. The documentary series was consolidated into 13 hour-long episodes for American television syndication. The series was released on videocassette format by Embassy and won a National Education Association award for best world documentary. Series writer Peter Arnett was an Associated Press reporter in Vietnam from 1962 to 1975. CBC aired only 18 of the episodes during the 1980-81 season because the series production was incomplete. The remaining episodes were broadcast during CBC's 1981-82 season. British audiences saw the series during Channel 4's 1984-85 season.Written by
Still one of the best documentary series on the Vietnam War
"Vietnam: The Ten Thousand Day War" is a 26-part series and still one of the best documentary series on the Vietnam War. This Canadian production is well-written and well-produced and gives a succinct though comprehensive narrative in chronological order of the events in Vietnam from 1945 onwards. The series eschews political and social bias or commentary and only relates the facts of the events of the war as they occurred. The series deals only briefly with the First Indochina War of the Vietminh against the French as the main focus is by far America in Vietnam. The series concentrates on the American phase of the war from 1962 through the U.S. military advisory stage to the Tonkin Gulf Incident of 1964 and then the U.S. commitment of the fighting arms of the U.S. armed forces in 1965 when U.S. troops were sent to South Vietnam to engage in battle against the Vietcong guerrillas and the North Vietnamese Army to the U.S. withdrawals of its fighting arms from 1969 to 1973 and the Paris Peace Accords of 1973. Veteran American actor Richard Basehart gives the narration and the fact that the series was made in 1980, only 5 years after the fall of Saigon to the North Vietnamese, makes the events with which it deals seem fresh as they had occurred only in the recent past at the time the series was produced. If one wants a comprehensive history of the U.S. involvement in the Vietnam War, this series is certainly one of the better documentary series to watch.
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