OPINION: After the Fall: Reactions and Rationales

After the surrender of Saigon, TIME asked a number of Americans who, as planners or participants, critics or casualties, were closely involved with the war in Viet Nam for their reactions to the Communist victory and their reflections on the meaning of the generation-long conflict. The answers:

GENERAL WILLIAM WESTMORELAND, 61, former commander of U.S. forces in South Viet Nam, retired in Charleston, S.C.: "It was heartbreaking, but it was not surprising. I've gone through the anguish of seeing Viet Nam deteriorate bit by bit. I must say the process has been more...

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