World: The Encircled City

Saigon, 11 p.m. The bars are closed, the cinemas out, the curfew on, and the TV set dark—but it's too early to go to bed. What to do? For the thousands of Americans in the city's apartment buildings and hotels, the problem is easily resolved. They can always go up to the roof and watch the war.

The show can be spectacular. Every night, more than 1,000 rounds of heavy artillery thump into the paddies and jungles surrounding Saigon to discourage Viet Cong activity. Their explosions light up the sky and shake the city. Five miles from the downtown Caravelle Hotel, the...

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