1973 Photo Contest, Photo Stories, 1st prize

Don McCullin

The Sunday Times

01 January, 1972

South Vietnamese soldier during the Vietnam War's Easter Offensive. In 1969, US President Richard Nixon introduced a new strategy, called ‘Vietnamization’, aimed at ending the American involvement in the Vietnam War. Step by step, all military responsibilities were transferred to the South Vietnamese army, in order to prepare South Vietnam to defense itself against North Vietnamese attacks. During the spring of 1972, North Vietnam started what is now called the Easter Offensive against South Vietnam, intensifying the fighting and bombardments. The North aimed at gaining as much territory as possible and crippling the South Vietnamese army, in order to strengthen its position during the ongoing peace negotiations, while demonstrating the failure of US’ Vietnamization policy. Major battlegrounds of the Easter Offensive were the province Quang Tri and the city of An Loc. In 1973, after negotiating a treaty with North and South Vietnam, the USA withdrew its forces from Vietnam and declared the Vietnamization process complete. However, in 1975, South Vietnam would fall to the Communist army.

About the photographer

Don McCullin

Donald 'Don' McCullin (London, UK, 1935) is one of history's great war photographers. His interest in photography was sparked during his national service (1953-1955), when he ser...

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