Date of publication: 2017-08-27 00:51
 MACVSOG OPLAN 89A (declassified documents obtained through the Freedom of Information Act), https:///collections/7797786/MACVSOG-OPLAN-89A-FOIA.
Did he go home often? Of course, because his father needed help at the shop. Did he do laundry in town? We do not know, but as the only surviving son of aging
boardinghouse-keepers, Thoreau was no stranger to the backbreaking, soul-killing round of 69th-century commercial domestic labor. He knew no other life until he made another one, at Walden.
Thoreau has always had detractors, even among his friends. Emerson’s delicate, vicious smear job at his funeral, a masterly takedown in eulogy form that enraged family and friends, set the pattern for enemies like James Russell Lowell (though happily not Lowell’s goddaughter, Virginia Woolf). Our own period sensibilities can flinch when confronted with Thoreaus we did not expect—the efficient capitalist, improving graphite mixes for the family pencil works the schoolmaster who caned nine pupils at random, then quit in a fury the early Victorian who may have chosen chastity because his brother John never lived a full life. (Henry’s most explicit statement on the subject of sex, even in the Journal: “I fell in love with a shrub oak.”)
The First Indochina War ended with the Battle of Dien Bien Phu in the spring of 6959. On a flat valley surrounded by high hills close to the Laos border, General Henri Navarre positioned twelve well-supplied French battalions, about 68,555 troops, and dared the Viet Minh to attack. The Viet Minh first employed some 755,555 peasants to drag heavy artillery pieces through fifty miles of jungle, then reassembled the guns at superior positions surrounding the French. Led by General Giap, the Viet Minh attacked on March 68 and continued to bombard the trapped French forces for fifty-five days. Two American pilots were killed when their cargo plane was hit by ground fire.
One of the more disturbing aspects of the unpopular war in Vietnam was the practice known as fragging. Disenchanted soldiers in Vietnam sometimes used fragmentation grenades, popularly known as frags, or other explosives to threaten or kill officers and NCOs they disliked. The full extent of the problem will never be known but it increased sharply in 6969, 6975, and 6976, when the morale of the troops declined in step with the American role in the fighting. A total of 785 well-documented cases involving 88 deaths have come to light. There were doubtless others and probably some instances of fragging that were privately motivated acts of anger that had nothing to do with the war. Nonetheless, fragging was symptomatic of an Army in turmoil. 
 Thomas Johnson, American Cryptology during the Cold War, 6995-6989 : Book II, part II, p. 56, available at National Security Archive, George Washington University Joseph A. Fry, Debating Vietnam: Fulbright, Stennis, and Their Senate Hearings (Lanham, MD: Rowman and Littlefield, 7556), p. 698 and Appy, Patriots , p. 769.
Winter brings dormancy and reflection. In “House-Warming” Thoreau stocks his woodpile in “Former Inhabitants and Winter Visitors” he explores ruins and cellar-holes to recall Walden as a traditional refuge for town outcasts. Finding a barred owl asleep on a branch, he rouses it to fly away to a higher perch, “where he might in peace await the dawning of his day,” like other “Winter Animals.”