The Killing Zone: My Life in the Vietnam War Test | Final Test - Hard

Frederick Downs
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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. Who serves as the point man on the next patrol?

2. Downs sees a large trailer that belongs to which person?

3. Who issues a new plan to Downs via radio?

4. Who issues the order to let the men go?

5. The men are attacked by an ambush shaped to resemble which letter?

Short Essay Questions

1. How is the platoon separated? Who are the leaders? What happens shortly after the separation? What is Downs' reaction to the conflict?

2. Explain the scene in which the Alpha Company engages in a large scale battle.

3. Who arrives to assist the soldiers? What happens during the operation?

4. Discuss Downs' state of mind at this stage of the war. What objections does Downs have about the way the mission is being operated?

5. What are some of Downs' ongoing complaints regarding the ARVN?

6. Explain what the author means by the genocidal aspect of the war. How does Downs justify this behavior?

7. What is the irony surrounding the major injuries sustained by Downs?

8. The American soldiers stumble upon a Vietcong camp. Describe what happens next.

9. Where is the Tam Ky province? How is it similar to the old base camp outside Duc Pho?

10. Explain the trip to the area around the Tam Ky province. What is the general atmosphere of the area.

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Discuss in details Downs' experience in the Veterans Administration. How did Downs become involved with the VA? What type of work did Downs do? How long was Downs affiliated with the VA? What prompted Downs to take the promotion? What was the new job? What did it entail? How was the job directly related to Downs' own experience? Why did Downs travel back to Vietnam during this time? How did the trip affect Downs?

Essay Topic 2

Downs was among a long line of other soldiers wounded in the line of duty. Examine and discuss various types of wounds that are mentioned in the book. How were the majority of the wounds inflicted? What is the standard treatment of a non-serious wound? What is the standard treatment for a potentially fatal wound? Who attends to the soldiers when they are wounded? How common is it for doctors to be present and to take care of the wounds? When doctors are not around, who performs the work?

Essay Topic 3

Downs is disgusted by the behavior of the ARVN soldiers. Explain why Downs was so angry. Was that kind of behavior common for a trained and experienced soldier? Explain. Do you think Downs was truly concerned about the ARVN hurting his platoon? What might have happened if a soldier had been hit by the shots fired over the heads of the platoon members on patrol? Do you think the shooting would have been covered up or would the ARVN soldier be exposed? What might happen to the soldier if caught?

(see the answer keys)

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