Monday, March 18, 2013

First Air Cav II.

This is coolbert:


Once more a response to a comment the subject that original blog entry, Ia Drang valley, Chu Pong mountain, Vietnam.

From my original entry: * Inexplicably - - twice at Ia Drang, the American infantry was surprised and much to their chagrin nearly annihilated. This cannot have been considered to be anything but an inauspicious and unfavorable start to major ground combat as undertaken by American forces in Vietnam. Even established a trend and tenor that was to last the entire duration of the war?

"Anonymous said...
It wasn't quite as one-sided as you make it sound. Albany sucked but American forces punched back about as well as they got punched, especially considering they were significantly outnumbered...actually inflicting more casualties as is typical of a defensive position. Many soldiers demonstrated immense acts of valor in defense of their comrades on both sides. Both sides actually claimed victory at the end of the day. I think you are trying way too hard to make this out to be a huge military blunder."

This is all correct. It was not so one-sided. At least at LZ X-Ray the American troops did defend in an admirable manner using indirect fire and close air support [CAS] that North Vietnamese enemy losing a lot of men. This is understood. That Colonel Moore [later Major General] was conducting a reconnaissance in force [?] BUT almost instantly found himself and his battalion besieged and threatened with annihilation cannot be seen as an auspicious start to large scale American ground combat in the war.

LZ Albany I would indeed categorize as a debacle. That an entire battalion in unfamiliar territory with unknown numbers of enemy in the vicinity was told to lay down in the open [tall grass] with the entire command apparatus of the battalion going to the front of the column [commanders call] at that exact wrong moment just suggests to me a certain degree of incompetence. And no discernible flank security either? What was that?

At LZ Albany whatever command structure remained [green lieutenants and sergeants] most of them cut down by enemy fire within seconds, at that time [1965] badges and chevrons of rank not subdued, the fight as it was left organized by specialists and privates!!

NOT a happy state of affairs.


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