Up the truong son road to save the nation- spirit full of the future
The Trail was not any single route, but rather a combination of many diverse roads, tracks, trails and paths for men on foot and bicycle - often effectively used to quite rapidly transport rice for long stretches. The Ho Chi Minh Trail included river transportation systems; sometimes even drums or barrels were simply floated with the current from one side to a carefully chosen point down river on the other.
According to the U.S. official history of the War, the Trail system was 'one of the great achievements of military engineering of the 20th century'. The strength of the Ho Chi Minh Trail and the problem it caused for the Americans and their South Vietnamese allies, was precisely that there was not just one trail, but many trails, and it proved impossible, especially by air power, to shut them all down all at once.
There is little doubt that the struggle to keep the Trail open was decisive for the outcome of the war, and therefore a primary objective, as the messages in some of the posters in this Gallery convey.