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American-Style Bars Thrive in Saigon

Sept. 16, 1962 - You can drink at the “Texas Bar” in Saigon now. If you don’t like Texas, you can always try the California, the Miami or the Hollywood Bars. At a Saigon restaurant, if you don’t want the Chinese or Vietnamese or French food, you can get a hamburger and a banana split. The Americanization of Saigon has increased greatly this year with the arrival of thousands of U.S. troops sent to serve as advisers and to give logistical support to the Vietnamese in their war against Communist guerrillas. The G.I.’s in South Vietnam are now estimated at 10,000. U.S. soldiers, husky and well fed, seem larger than life as they walk among the smaller Vietnamese, often seeming to outnumber them. And Saigon seems to have focused its eye on the Yankee dollar. In most of the tailor shops, the advertising is in English, and the goods displayed are American-style button-down sports shirts, American loafers, and special lounging jackets bearing such sentiments as “When I die, I’ll go to heaven because I’ve served my time in hell — Saigon 1961-62.” English is now Vietnam’s leading foreign language.

#vietnam #vietnamwar #history #OTD #1960s