Fall of Saigon – Then and Now

On April 29, 1975 Hugh Van Es of United Press International at Gia Long Street took what became the iconic photograph of the U.S. evacuation of the Vietnamese city of Saigon,

Being in Saigon, and 44 years and one day later, I decided to hunt for this place. It’s not easy to find! First, the street has been re-named. Second, it’s not on any tour maps. Third, it’s almost entirely surrounded by modern shopping centers and high rise skyscrapers.  But after about two hours of exploring in the hot, humid, healthy Saigon sun I found it!

Here is the top of the building, right across the street from a modern indoor shopping mall:

And here is a blow-up so you can see the detail on the top.

Interestingly, I spotted a large number of American tourists walking in and out of the shopping mall, all of them unaware that they were standing underneath a true historical landmark. It’s a shame that the city of Saigon does not do more to recognize this location.