- Vietnam Campaign Medal
Infobox Military Award
name=Vietnam Campaign Medal
Republic of Vietnam
eligibility=Service in South Vietnam between 1961 and 1973
status=not currently awarded
Vietnam Gallantry Cross
The Vietnam Campaign Medal is a military recognition awarded by the
Republic of Vietnam, (also known as South Vietnam), [The Republic of Vietnam, also known as South Vietnam, is the name for the former Vietnamese state that existed from 1954 to 1976 in the portion of Vietnam that lies south of the 17th parallel. " North Vietnam" (the Democratic Republic of Vietnam) was situated to the north of the 17th parallel.] to any member of the United States, Australian, New Zealand and allied military forces, who completed at least six months of duty in South Vietnam between the dates of 1 March 1961 and 28 March 1973.
Established in 1966, the decoration is a service medal of the
Vietnam Warand was the most commonly bestowed foreign military award to United States militarypersonnel prior to the Gulf War.Fact|date=February 2007
The decoration may also be awarded to any service member who, while serving outside the geographical limits of the Republic of Vietnam, provided direct combat support to the Republic of Vietnam Armed Forces for a period exceeding six months. This stipulation most often applies to members who performed Vietnam War support from
Thailandand Japan. In such cases, a US service member must have been awarded either the Vietnam Service Medalor the Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal(for service in a Vietnam campaign) to be eligible for the Vietnam Campaign Medal.
For those members who were wounded by an enemy force, captured by the enemy in the line of duty, or killed in action, the Vietnam Campaign Medal is automatically awarded regardless of total time served in Vietnam.Fact|date=February 2007
The Vietnam Campaign Medal is issued with a device known as the “1960 Bar”. The bar displays the date of 1960 followed by a dash and a blank space. The unusual appearance was caused by the government of the Republic of Vietnam stating that the 1960 bar would show the dates of the Vietnam War from start to finish, with the ending date placed on the 1960 bar after the South Vietnamese had triumphed over
North Vietnam(the Democratic Republic of Vietnam). Since South Vietnam fell, and the government ceased to exist, an ending date for the 1960 Bar was never established.
In addition to the 1960 Bar, Republic of Vietnam Armed Forces Memorandum 2655 prescribed a second device for service during the period 8 March 1949 - 20 July 1954 (which had both years displayed). American military personnel have never been authorized to wear it, but since this was during the French colonial period it is unlikely that many would have been eligible.
The United States military currently issues the Vietnam Campaign Medal for veterans of the Vietnam war, but only provides a ribbon with 1960 bar. The decoration is available for purchase at most U.S. military installations' military clothing sales outlets, but if recipients are unable to access a military installation, private military insignia dealers have them on hand. The decoration may also be found for sale on the
The Vietnam Campaign Medal is considered a foreign award by the U.S., Australian and New Zealand governments. The U.S. equivalent award is known as the
Vietnam Service Medal. The joint Australian and New Zealand campaign medalawarded for service in the Vietnam Waris the Vietnam Medal.
Other frequently bestowed Vietnam awards include the
Vietnam Civil Actions Medaland the Vietnam Gallantry Cross, both of which were awarded extensively to both Vietnamese military service members and to the members of foreign militaries.
References and notes
* [http://www.saintjohn.nbcc.nb.ca/host/vietnam/ Military Orders, Decorations, and Medals of the Republic of Vietnam]
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