This is coolbert:
Back to the subject of Vietnam and my own listing of "things" that worked well during that conflict.
Items to include:
* AC-47 gunship.
* Phoenix Program.
* Riverine Task force.
* ACAV. [Armored Cavalry Regiment]
Now with additional listing of "things" that worked in Vietnam from an authority the judgment of which I assure you can be trusted and relied upon. If anyone would know, this man would know.
Items that worked to include:
* "laser guided and television guided bombs, [used] just during the last year of active US involvement, but enough to make a huge difference in the short time they were present."
* "jet drones rather than use RF4s to overfly N. Viet targets." [reconnaissance flights unmanned not endangering pilots.]
* "Gatling gun/Vulcan cannon" [7.62 mm and 20 mm calibers both. The former called mini-guns]
* "Hand held emergency radios--used for rescue but also as back-up radios for small units like Spec Ops"
Also from that very same authority at his suggestion and in his opinion also "a list of things that didn't work": To include:
1. "Gradual Escalation"
2. "Search and destroy"
3. "MacNamara Line"
4. "Civilian decisions running the military" [micro-management at a low level of battlefield decision making]
5. "M-60 machine gun"
6. "F-111" [out of the first six aircraft deployed to theatre, two crashed.]
7. "Missiles to the exclusion of guns on planes" [rapid fire Vulcan cannon added as an afterthought.]
8. "Multi-role aircraft (making the F4 into a jack of all trades, master of none) . . . It wasn't the right time yet to create multi-role aircraft,"
It was often suggested that the entire Vietnam escapade was often seen by the military as merely a chance to try out new weapons, doctrine, theory, tactics, etc. And see how well U.S. gear as in the inventory at the time measured up when compared to the Soviet brand. Vietnam portrayed more as a macro-scale shooting gallery allowing the American combat arms soldier and airman to test his mettle and weaponry under real-world conditions.
The results of which often found to be wanting, lacking in a manner that was disturbing and troublesome. If this "stuff" did not work against the North Vietnamese, how well would it fare against the Soviets? That must have been the question asked over and over!
Other devoted readers to the blog with Vietnam experience can add or subtract from these listings? Opinions and suggestions invited!