MilitaryHistoryOnline.com Home   Genealogy   Forums   Search   Contact
Search
Amazon:
Keywords:
MHO Home
MHO Home
 Ancient
 Medieval
 17th Century
 18th Century
 19th Century
 American Civil War
 World War I
 World War II
 Korea
 Vietnam
 20th - 21st Century


 Write for MHO
 Search MHO
 Civil War Genealogy Database
 Privacy Policy
 MilitaryGaming.com

Vietnam War
MHO Home
 Vietnam War Home

Vietnam War Articles
The Green Beret Affair: A Factual Review
The "Green Beret Affair"
America's Paradoxical Trinity
The Cambodian Incursion
Dien Bien Phu: A Battle Assessment
The Effects of Vietnamization
The Battle for Hue
Dien Bien Phu 50 Years Later
The Wild Weasels
Role of Airpower in Vietnam

Ads by Google




Vietnam War Articles
The Vietnam War
1961 - 1973

Member Article: The Green Beret Affair: A Factual Review
by Terry McIntosh

After serving six months in country Vietnam with Special Forces C and B Teams, I was assigned to A-Team 414 operating in the Ken Tuong Province, Mekong Delta. The base camp sat a stone’s throw from the Cambodian border, and provided front line defense aimed at NVA and Viet Cong units based in the neighboring country. The team also hosted a top secret intelligence gathering operation “over the fence” inside of Cambodia. The Intel net was a part of Project Gamma, and was illegal in regards to agreements between the United States and Vietnam, and political restraints that forbade US incursions into Cambodia at that time.
Read more... 4,289 words
* * *
Member Article: The "Green Beret Affair": A Brief Introduction
by Bob Seals

By the year 1969 United States involvement in South Vietnam was in its fourth year with no end in sight. Major U.S. ground combat forces, to include elite paratroops and marines, had been first committed in country during the spring of 1965. The fighting had increased in scale and intensity until by 1969 U.S. military strength stood at 536,000 on the ground. The Navy's 7th Fleet in the Tonkin Gulf, and Air Force strategic bombers flying from bases on Guam and Thailand providing major sea and air support for US forces on the ground. The South East Asia Treaty Organization nations of Australia, New Zealand, South Korea, Thailand and the Philippines would provide yet another 62,000 allied troops fighting against the Viet Cong and North Vietnamese Communist forces.[1]
Read more... 6,411 words
* * *
* * *
Member Article: Paradoxical Trinity: WWII and Vietnam
by Walter S. Zapotoczny

According to Carl von Clausewitz, the nineteenth century military philosopher, war is always comprised of what he called a paradoxical trinity. In his book On War, Clausewitz described this trinity as an interactive set of three basic dominant tendencies that drive the events of war. He said the trinity is composed of: "primordial violence, hatred, and hostility; its element of subordination as an instrument of policy; and the play of chance and probability within which the creative spirit is free to roam." Each of these tendencies generally, but not exclusively, corresponds to one of three groups in society. The first of these three tendencies correspond mainly to the people; the second to the government; the third to the commander and his army. another.
Read more... 4,363 words
* * *
Member Article: The Cambodian Incursion: A Hard Line for Change
by Major Jeremiah S. Boenisch

On 1 May 1970, United States and South Vietnamese units launched a ground and air offensive into neutral Cambodia to eliminate North Vietnamese sanctuaries used for frequent raids into South Vietnam. Dubbed the Cambodian Incursion by President Nixon, the U.S. ground operation took place over a 60-day period from 1 May to 29 June and was overlapped by Allied air strikes and a 75 day South Vietnamese incursion.[1] By combining the efforts of the South Vietnamese, devastating air power, and army ground forces, the Allied Forces overwhelmed enemy positions and supply points resulting in thousands of enemy killed and an unprecedented recovery of enemy materiel. Although the incursion is sometimes portrayed as a strategic failure, it was not. This paper will illustrate that the campaign, though unpopular, was actually the key event necessary for severing the enemy's lines of communications and logistics in Cambodia, aiding the successful withdrawal program, saving U.S. credibility, and showing the success of Vietnamization.
Read more... 3,496 words
* * *
Member Article: Dien Bien Phu: A Battle Assessment
by David Pennington

Jules Roy described Dien Bien Phu as the "setting in which the West had suffered one of the greatest disasters in its history."[1] An assessment of the Battle of Dien Bien Phu reveals that the French had no clear objective, ignored conventional theories of warfare, over relied on air power, and underestimated the abilities of their adversary. An objective investigation of the events at Dien Bien Phu from November 1953 to May 1954 reveals that for as much as the French did wrong, the Vietminh did right. When French Premier Rene Mayer selected General Henri Navarre to become the commander in chief of French forces in Indochina, he instructed him to create a military scenario in Indochina that would bring about a satisfactory political conclusion to hostilities there.[2] Navarre surveyed the situation in Indochina and concluded the greatest threat to achieving his given objective was in Tonkin; the Navarre Plan was the result. Navarre wanted to bring the "life and vigor" back to the French Expeditionary Corps while at the same time assuming an offensive posture to disrupt Vietminh forces and prevent their consolidation for a collective offensive.[3]
Read more... 2,093 words
* * *
Member Article: "A Time of Testing": The Battle for Hue
by Larry Parker

During the battle of Stalingrad the legions of the Nationalist Socialist German Workers Party (NSDAP) engaged the military might of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) in a brutal struggle to the death. The encounter began as a military versus military conflict along conventional lines. Due to the extreme nature of the ideologies involved and since neither collateral damage, public accountability, a free press nor world opinion were an issue to either Hitler or Stalin, the battle rapidly degenerated into a vicious war of attrition – a test of political will and national resources. Stalingrad became an enormous slaughterhouse, devouring men and machines on a scale not seen since Verdun. In the end the resilience of the Russian soldier and the vast resources of the Soviet State prevailed against the professionalism of the German soldaten and the tactical superiority of the Wehrmacht. Twenty-five years later and 5000 miles to the Southeast, a similar battle was fought in the ancient city of Hue. Now the forces of communism were pitted against the forces of democracy[1] in one of the major confrontations of the Cold War. For twenty-six bloody days, American and Army of the Republic of Vietnam (ARVN) troops waged a fierce house-to-house struggle against North Vietnamese Army (NVA) soldiers and National Liberation Front / Viet Cong (NLF / VC) irregular forces for control of Hue.
Read more... 2,703 words
* * *
* * *
Member Article: "Peace" in a Very Small Place: Dien Bien Phu 50 Years Later
by Bob Seals

Stepping out of the small Vietnam Airlines aircraft on a June day in 1999, we found ourselves on the sweltering airfield tarmac. We were in an enormous valley, completely surrounded by towering, wooded hills hundreds of meters in height to the north, south, east and west. The lazy Nam Yum River wound like a snake, making turns through the low ground.  Laos was eight kilometers due west. We were, of course, in the small North Vietnamese village of Dien Bien Phu, site of one of the most decisive battles of the 20th century, perhaps of all time.[1] Dien Bien Phu was the greatest Airborne battle ever fought, a decisive event of the Cold War with international communism, a disaster that inevitably led to the demise of a colonial empire and to subsequent United States involvement in Southeast Asia. It is a battle relatively unknown to most Americans, including many professional Army Officers. The siege of the French Union garrison of Dien Bien Phu during the First Indochina War was an epic 56-day blood-letting that became one of the great turning points in history, a battle that as one French Foreign Legionnaire remarked "was an occasion for military heroism on a grand scale."[2] One might add that it was also an opportunity for military miscalculation on a grand scale, a potent mixture of unquestionable heroism and stupidity that has fascinated me for years.
Read more... 3,096 words
* * *
Member Article: The Wild Weasels "Daredevils of the skies"
by Mike Nastasi

During the early days of the Vietnam War, the United States Air Force had almost full autonomy over the skies of Vietnam. However, once the Soviet Union and China began arming the North Vietnamese Army (NVA), with advanced Surface to Air missile (SAM) systems, the U.S. domination of the skies was abrubtly challenged. To deal with the new SAM threat, the U.S. Air Force decided to dedicate men and machine exclusively to the SAM's. Thus a new breed of aviator and aircraft were born, the "Wild Weasels." The purpose of the "Weasels" was to seek out and engage NVA SAM sites, and if possible destroy them. Often times though, the only way the Weasel pilots could locate a SAM site was by getting the NVA to fire a SAM at them, thus revealing their position. Tantamount to a suicide mission, the Weasel missions were amongst the most dangerous sorties of the war. Losses in the Weasel squadrons were among the highest of the war. In the early stages of the Weasel development, the aircraft and its avionics were not ideally suited for this new and dangerous mission. However as the war progressed, the U.S. Air Force developed a dedicated Weasel aircraft, the Republic F-105G Thunderchief. The "Thud" as it is affectionately known to the pilots who flew it, is recognized as the workhorse of the Vietnam War. The men who flew the F-105 love the airplane and from all accounts the aircraft performed superbly throughout the war.
Read more...
* * *
Member Article: The Role of Airpower in the Vietnam War
by Mike Nastasi

The use of air power in the Vietnam War would change the way wars were fought for the Twentieth century and beyond. New technological advances and more sophisticated weapons made the Vietnam War a testing ground for the U.S. military. New tactics and approaches were used and to varying degrees of success. Air power would be used as a bargaining tool and as punishment for North Vietnamese acts of aggression. Vietnam also introduced the attack helicopter as a vital weapon and it dawned a new age of tactics for the U.S. military. Starting with the training and advising of the South Vietnamese Air Force (VNAF), and culminating with the Christmas bombing of 1972, the U.S. would be involved in the skies over Vietnam for over 15 years. Consistent with U.S. military as well as political objectives the air war in Vietnam gradually increased and built up throughout the campaign. Air components of all four military services were utilized. Jet bombers and fighters were used extensively for the first time in the history of modern warfare. There are many differences of opinion regarding the effectiveness of the air campaign during the Vietnam War, with many historians arguing that the air war was too costly in lives and money. Proponents of the air campaign say that it dawned a new age in warfare and actually helped bring the war to a close. The air campaign was not without cost however. The North Vietnamese, with the help of the former Soviet Union, had developed an extensive air defense network, and the United States suffered heavy helicopter, plane and pilot losses throughout the campaign.
Read more...
* * *
* * *
Featured Books


Giap: The General Who Defeated America in Vietnam


Vietnam Album


Noble Warrior: The Life and Times of Maj. Gen. James E. Livingston, USMC (Ret.), Medal of Honor


Search and Destroy: The Story of an Armored Cavalry Squadron in Vietnam: 1-1 Cav, 1967-1968


Road of 10,000 Pains: The Destruction of the 2nd NVA Division by the U.S. Marines, 1967


1st Marine Division in Vietnam


Marines in Hue City: A Portrait of Urban Combat, Tet 1968


Where We Were in Vietnam 


Larry Burrows Vietnam


We Were Soldiers Once...and Young 

 
RN: The Memoirs of Richard Nixon
© 2014 MilitaryHistoryOnline.com, LLC Contact Brian Williams at: militaryhistoryonline@hotmail.com