Back in 1966 the “Ballad of the Green Berets” was in the middle of a five week run at the top of the Hot 100 number-one singles chart (March 5 – April 2). The Wikipedia entry on the song says:
It is one of the very few songs of the 1960s to cast the military in a positive light … The song was written by Robin Moore and Staff Sgt. Barry Sadler, while the latter was recuperating from a leg wound suffered as a medic in the Vietnam War. Moore also wrote a non-fiction book, The Green Berets, about the force. … Sadler debuted the song on television on January 30, 1966 on The Ed Sullivan Show.
I was a six year old at the time. I remember the song, even though I grew up in a house where the radio was rarely on and no one spent money purchasing records. Perhaps I saw it performed on The Ed Sullivan Show, as I do have recollections of my uncle watching that program. And I know I remember the song that preceded the “Ballad of the Green Berets” on the charts, Nancy Sinatra’s “These Boots are Made for Walkin’“. I wanted to look like her and to have a pair of “go-go boots.” Neither of those things were meant to be. (Thank goodness! – now that I have looked at YouTube.)