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In the First Person—Saigon, 1975: Bitter Memories: The Fall of Saigon

In the First Person—Saigon, 1975: Bitter Memories: The Fall of Saigon
Tom Glenn


Day la nhung tin tuc cua Tieng Noi Hué Ky phat thanh tu thu do Hoa Thinh Don.

(“Here is the news from the Voice of America, broadcast from the capital, Washington.”) That’s what I heard every day—the Voice of America in Vietnamese. I listened to the BBC, I listened to the American Radio Service, I listened to anything I could hear to keep track of what was happening. It was April 1975. I was in Saigon waiting for the North Vietnamese to attack.

As a speaker of Chinese, French, and Vietnamese, I’d been operating in Vietnam under cover on and off for 13 years. My job was signals intelligence (SIGINT), the intercept and exploitation of the communications of the invading North Vietnamese. I was an employee of the National Security Agency, but my connection with NSA was classified; my name was redacted from unclassified NSA documents. Now, after 40 years, my work has been declassified, and I can tell the story of what happened.

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Posted: Feb 08, 2016 12:09 PM
Last Updated: Feb 08, 2016 12:09 PM