Posted on Nov 18, 2020
CWO3 Dennis M.
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Good Morning RallyPoint on this day, November 18, 2020. Here is your history for the Vietnam War on this day 18 November through the years of the war. And I have the honor of introducing RP members to a Medal Of Honor recipient due to actions on this day in Vietnam History. Welcome home all Veterans and those that gave their all, may you rest in peace...!


Today, 18 November in Vietnam War History

18 November 1961 President Kennedy sends 18,000 “advisors” to South Vietnam.

18 November 1964, In the largest air assault of the war thus far, 116 U.S. and South Vietnamese aircraft fly 1,100 South Vietnamese troops into Binh Duong and Tay Ninh Provinces to attack what is believed to be a major communist stronghold. The operation was planned to attack a major communist stronghold. General Nguyen Khanh personally directed the operation, but the troops made only light contact with the Viet Cong.

18 November 1964, Un-named Operation, U.S.-Vietnamese air and ground search for a supposed VC stronghold, Bình Dương and Tây Ninh Provinces.

18 November 1965, Operation Road Runner II, 3rd Brigade, 1st Infantry Division security operation, Bình Dương Province

18 November 1966 – 3 December 1966, Operation Ingham, 5th Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment and 6th Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment search and destroy, Xuyên Mộc District.

18 November 1966 – 19 November 1966, In the Incident on Hill 192 five men of C Company, 2nd Battalion, 8th Cavalry, 1st Cavalry Division kidnapped, gang raped and murdered Phan Thi Mao, a young Vietnamese woman. One of the group later reported the crime and the other four were convicted of murder and served sentences of 22 months to four years

18 November 1967 – 23 December 1967, Operation Atlanta II, 2nd and 3rd Brigades, 25th Infantry Division and ARVN 5th Division search and destroy operation Bình Dương and Hậu Nghĩa Provinces
Before General Mearns initiated his dry season offensive in the wilderness of northern Tay Ninh Province, he used elements from all three of his brigades to sweep the jungles and disused rubber plantations near the division’s base at Cu Chi, located on Highway 1 in western Hau Nghia Province some twenty kilometers northwest of Saigon, to ensure that his rear area would be as safe as possible. Operation Atlanta got under way on 18 November when General Mearns air-assaulted several regular infantry battalions in and around the western part of the Iron Triangle, a heavily forested enemy base wedged between the Saigon River and Highway 13 in neighboring Binh Duong Province. Once those troops had secured the sector between Cu Chi and the Iron Triangle, Mearns sent a mechanized infantry battalion and 25th Division engineers equipped with Rome plows through the corridor and across the river by barge to begin the jungle-clearing phase of Operation Atlanta. Over the next three weeks, the 2d Brigade task force cleared nearly 4,452 hectares of jungle and destroyed approxi-mately 7,000 meters of tunnels, further reducing the size of the Viet Cong sanctuary though not eliminating it completely. The Americans also seized nearly 181 metric tons of rice and killed 143 enemy soldiers. U.S. losses came to 18 dead and 74 wounded, many of those casualties coming from mines and booby traps that the enemy used to protect his supply caches.

18 November 1967, The VC announced its willingness to honor a seven-day ceasefire during the Tết holiday, for a period running from 27 January through 2 February 1968.

18 November 1967, USAF Brigadier General Edward B. Burdett dies shortly after capture in North Vietnam having ejected from his F-105 which was hit by a SAM-2 missile.

18 November 1969, 60 South Vietnamese men are killed or wounded when their troops clash with communist forces in the Mekong Delta. The North Vietnamese lost only 14 men. A South Vietnamese spokesman said that the high South Vietnamese casualties were “due to bad fighting on our part.” The battle was the first major action in the northern delta since the U.S. 9th Division was withdrawn and the South Vietnamese assumed responsibility for the area.

18 November 1970, Operation Hancock Dragon, 1st Squadron, 10th Cavalry Regiment and 2nd Battalion, 503rd Airborne Infantry Regiment security operation, Pleiku Province

18 November 1970, President Nixon asks Congress for supplemental appropriations for the Cambodian government of Premier Lon Nol. Nixon requested $155 million in new funds for Cambodia – $85 million of which would be for military assistance, mainly in the form of ammunition. He also asked for an additional $100 million to restore funds taken from other foreign appropriations during the year by “presidential determination” and given to Cambodia. Nixon wanted the funds to provide aid and assistance to Lon Nol to preclude the fall of Cambodia to the communist Khmer Rouge and their North Vietnamese allies. Lon Nol was a Cambodian general who had overthrown the government of Prince Norodom Sihanouk in March 1970. He and his army, the Forces Armees Nationale Khmer (FANK), were engaged in a desperate struggle with the communists for control of the Cambodian countryside. The Nixon administration had initiated a program of aid to Lon Nol in April 1970 with $7.5 million in arms and supplies. This aid did not have an immediate impact as the government forces reeled under heavy communist attacks. Besides trying to get additional funds for more military aid for Cambodia, Nixon also committed U.S. aircraft in direct support of Cambodian government troops and initiated a program whereby U.S. Army Special Forces would train Lon Nol’s troops. With this U.S. support, Lon Nol was able to successfully withdraw most of his forces (which numbered over 200,000 troops) from the rural areas to the larger urban centers, where they were able to hold out against the communist attacks. The fighting continued, but generally a stalemate prevailed so that neither side gained the upper hand. This situation changed in 1973 after the signing of the Paris Peace Accords. Under the provisions of that agreement, the United States withdrew its forces from South Vietnam and both the Cambodians and South Vietnamese found themselves fighting the communists alone. Without U.S. support, Lon Nol’s forces succumbed to the Khmer Rouge in April 1975. During the five years of bitter fighting, approximately 10 percent of Cambodia’s 7 million people died, but the suffering of the Cambodian people did not end with the communist takeover. The victorious Khmer Rouge evacuated Phnom Penh and set about to reorder Cambodian society, which resulted in a killing spree and the notorious “killing fields.” During this period, hundreds of thousands of Cambodians died from murder, exhaustion, hunger, and disease.
Cambodia’s PM Lon Nol (1913-1985) had officially invited the US to extend the war in Vietnam into Cambodia to wreck the Ho Chi Minh supply trail.


Today is November 18, 2020
Vietnam War Memorial facts
185 Names on the wall were born on 18 November
120 Names on the wall died on 18 November
245 men earned the Medal Of Honor in the Vietnam war and 160 of those men are listed on the wall

Some additional wall facts;

NAME CRITERIA
DOD casualty lists were compiled during and after the Vietnam War according to criteria set in Executive Order No. 11216, signed by President Johnson on April 24, 1965, designating Vietnam and adjacent coastal waters, within specified geographical coordinates, as a combat zone. As hostilities spread, the combat zone was expanded to include additional areas such as Laos and Cambodia in or over which U.S. forces operated. DOD Instruction 7730.22, "Reports of U.S. Casualties In Combat Areas," January 20, 1967, and March 20, 1973, provided that the casualties to be reported were all those occurring within the designated combat areas and those deaths occurring anywhere as the result or aftermath of an initial casualty occurring in a combat area.

In February 1981, DOD supplied the VVMF with a computer database representing the casualty list which included those known dead or missing in action. The list included casualties from battle or hostile causes and those from accidental causes. After a lengthy process of cross checking the lists and working with each branch of the military, the VVMF used its discretion in adding some names that had been overlooked, but which still met the criteria.

The VVMF recognized that names might be added to the memorial after it was constructed and was gratified that DOD set up a mechanism to review individual cases of deaths some months or years after being wounded in Vietnam.

Names are added when it has been determined that a service member has died directly from combat-related wounds. Cancer victims of Agent Orange, and post traumatic stress suicides do not fit the criteria for inclusion upon the Memorial. Some have calculated that it would take another two or more entire Walls to include all the names in those two categories alone.

In addition, status changes occur when remains of missing-in-action (MIA) servicemen are identified, an ongoing process conducted by DOD. The VVMF works in conjunction with DOD to determine name additions and status changes and with the National Park Service which operates and maintains the Memorial. The cost of additional inscriptions is paid by the VVMF which has always been funded exclusively by private supporters.


Other items of interest;

Booby traps

Grenade-In-A-Can
Two cans were mounted on trees along either side of a path. The safety pins on the grenades are removed and the explosives are put into cans, which hold down the striker levers. The tripwire was then tied to each grenade. When the wire was tripped, the grenades were pulled out of the cans to detonate instantly. This could also be done with one can and a stake.

Bamboo Whip
Another sharpened bamboo trap, the whip consisted of spikes over a long bamboo pole. The pole was pulled back into an arc using a catch attached to a tripwire. When the wire is tripped, the catch gives out and sent foot-long spikes into a trooper’s chest at a hundred miles an hour.

Myth: Most American soldiers were addicted to drugs, guilt-ridden about their role in the war, and deliberately used cruel and inhumane tactics.

The facts are:
91% of Vietnam Veterans say they are glad they served (Westmoreland papers)

74% said they would serve again even knowing the outcome (Westmoreland papers)

There is no difference in drug usage between Vietnam Veterans and non veterans of the same age group (from a Veterans Administration study) (Westmoreland papers)

Isolated atrocities committed by American soldiers produced torrents of outrage from antiwar critics and the news media while Communist atrocities were so common that they received hardly any attention at all. The United States sought to minimize and prevent attacks on civilians while North Vietnam made attacks on civilians a centerpiece of its strategy. Americans who deliberately killed civilians received prison sentences while Communists who did so received commendations. From 1957 to 1973, the National Liberation Front assassinated 36,725 South Vietnamese and abducted another 58,499. The death squads focused on leaders at the village level and on anyone who improved the lives of the peasants such as medical personnel, social workers, and schoolteachers. (Nixon Library) Atrocities – every war has atrocities. War is brutal and not fair. Innocent people get killed.

Vietnam Veterans are less likely to be in prison – only 1/2 of one percent of Vietnam Veterans have been jailed for crimes. (Westmoreland papers)

87% of the American people hold Vietnam Vets in high esteem.(McCaffrey Papers)


Vietnam quotes;

Of all recent presidents, Clinton was expected to behave the most sensibly in economic matters. He understood how the economy works. But because he had used various dodges to stay out of the Vietnam War, he came to office ill at ease with the military.” Gore Vidal

“If the communists are willing to lay down their weapons, abandon the communist ideology, and abandon atrocities, they could participate in elections.”- South Vietnamese President Nguyen Van Thieu, May 30, 1969

“The Vietnam War was a great tragedy for our country. And it is now far enough away so that one can study without using the slogans to see what's really happened.” Henry Kissinger

“What is astonishing about the social history of the Vietnam war is not how many people avoided it, but how many could not and did not.” John Gregory Dunne

“The Vietnam War totally turned my life around. Some people's lives were eliminated or destroyed by the experience. I was one of the fortunate few who came out better off.” Craig Venter

Congressional Medal Of Honor for actions on this day 18 November: SGT Sammy L. Davis (Known as the real Forest Gump)


Sammy Lee Davis (born November 1, 1946) is an American who served in the United States Army during the Vietnam War and was awarded the nation's highest military medal for valor, the Medal of Honor.

Born in Dayton, Ohio, on November 1, 1946, Davis was raised in French Camp, California. His family had a long tradition of military service; his grandfather served in the Spanish–American War, his father Robert Davis was in World War II, and his brothers Hubert ("Buddy") and Darrell Davis served in Korea and Vietnam, respectively. Davis attended Manteca High School in Manteca, California, where he was a member of the football and diving teams. He also participated in Sea Scouting in Stockton. After his junior year of high school, Davis' family moved to Indiana. He graduated from Mooresville High School in 1966.

Davis enlisted in the United States Army from Indianapolis, Indiana, in 1965.
In March 1967, Davis was sent to South Vietnam as a private first class, and was assigned to Battery C, 2nd Battalion, 4th Artillery Regiment, 9th Infantry Division. On November 18, 1967, his unit at Firebase Cudgel (10.4198°N 105.991°E) west of Cai Lay, fell under machine gun fire and heavy mortar attack by an estimated three companies of Viet Cong from the 261st Viet Cong Main Force Battalion, which swarmed the area from the south and then west. Upon detecting an enemy position, Davis manned a machine gun to give his comrades covering fire so they could fire artillery in response. Davis was wounded, but ignored warnings to take cover, taking over the unit's burning howitzer and firing several shells himself. He also disregarded his inability to swim due to a broken back, and crossed a river there on an air mattress to help rescue three wounded American soldiers. He ultimately found his way to another howitzer site to continue fighting the NVA attack until they fled. The battle lasted two hours.
Davis was subsequently promoted to sergeant and received the Medal of Honor the following year from President Lyndon B. Johnson. After he was presented the medal at the White house ceremony, Davis played "Oh Shenandoah" on his harmonica in memory of the men he served with in Vietnam.
Davis retired in 1984 due to his war-time injuries.

In 1994, footage of his Medal of Honor award ceremony was used in the film Forrest Gump, with actor Tom Hanks' head superimposed over that of Davis.

Davis tells his story in the 2002 documentary A Time For Honor.

In July 2005, while in Indianapolis, Davis' medal was stolen out of the trunk of his car. It was recovered a few days later in neighboring White River.

On July 4, 2010, Davis helped celebrate the 100th birthday of the Boy Scouts of America at Arlington Park. Davis entered scouting at the age of 9. He has also been honored by the Joe Foss Institute for his dedication to serving America. Davis is a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Medal of Honor citation

Rank and organization: Sergeant (then Private First Class), U.S. Army, Battery C, 2nd Battalion, 4th Artillery, 9th Infantry Division
Place and date: West of Cai Lay, Republic of Vietnam, 18 November 1967
Entered service at: Indianapolis, Indiana
Born: 1 November 1946, Dayton, Ohio
DAVIS, SAMMY L.

Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Army, Battery C, 2d Battalion, 4th Artillery, 9th Infantry Division. Place and date: West of Cai Lay, Republic of Vietnam, 18 November 1967. Entered service at: Indianapolis, Ind. Born: 1 November 1946, Dayton, Ohio.

Citation:
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life and beyond the call of duty. Sgt. Davis (then Pfc.) distinguished himself during the early morning hours while serving as a cannoneer with Battery C, at a remote fire support base. At approximately 0200 hours, the fire support base was under heavy enemy mortar attack. Simultaneously, an estimated reinforced Viet Cong battalion launched a fierce ground assault upon the fire support base. The attacking enemy drove to within 25 meters of the friendly positions. Only a river separated the Viet Cong from the fire support base. Detecting a nearby enemy position, Sgt. Davis seized a machine gun and provided covering fire for his guncrew, as they attempted to bring direct artillery fire on the enemy. Despite his efforts, an enemy recoilless rifle round scored a direct hit upon the artillery piece. The resultant blast hurled the guncrew from their weapon and blew Sgt. Davis into a foxhole. He struggled to his feet and returned to the howitzer, which was burning furiously. Ignoring repeated warnings to seek cover, Sgt. Davis rammed a shell into the gun. Disregarding a withering hail of enemy fire directed against his position, he aimed and fired the howitzer which rolled backward, knocking Sgt. Davis violently to the ground. Undaunted, he returned to the weapon to fire again when an enemy mortar round exploded within 20 meters of his position, injuring him painfully. Nevertheless, Sgt. Davis loaded the artillery piece, aimed and fired. Again he was knocked down by the recoil. In complete disregard for his safety, Sgt. Davis loaded and fired 3 more shells into the enemy. Disregarding his extensive injuries and his inability to swim, Sgt. Davis picked up an air mattress and struck out across the deep river to rescue 3 wounded comrades on the far side. Upon reaching the 3 wounded men, he stood upright and fired into the dense vegetation to prevent the Viet Cong from advancing. While the most seriously wounded soldier was helped across the river, Sgt. Davis protected the 2 remaining casualties until he could pull them across the river to the fire support base. Though suffering from painful wounds, he refused medical attention, joining another howitzer crew which fired at the large Viet Cong force until it broke contact and fled. Sgt. Davis’ extraordinary heroism, at the risk of his life, are in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflect great credit upon himself and the U.S. Army.
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SGT Robert Pryor
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The whole idea of atrocities has always bothered me. Those fools that raped and murdered Phan Thị Mão (The Incident on Hill 192) essentially got away with it, as did William Calley with regards to the Mỹ Lai massacre. The veteran haters in this country used those incidents to paint an evil picture of Vietnam Veterans that many still believe. When Sir Charles overran any Special Forces camp such as mine, they would murder as many civilians as possible. But those atrocities did not make the news over here. I blame it on two things. First, it did not fit the narrative of the media, academia and draft dodgers that wanted to discredit us to hide the fact that they were gutless little pieces of excrement. The other was racism. As poorly as people of African descent have been treated in this country, Asians continue to get mistreated by many Americans with little outrage. Consider the 140,000 people of Japanese ancestry that were put in concentration camps by Kommissar Roosevelt during WWII. Then consider how Asians have been discriminated against when it comes to college admissions even today.
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SGT Robert Pryor
SGT Robert Pryor
2 mo
Capt Raymond Sonoda REALTOR® CA Broker CRE ITAR - It's good to see you posting over here -- bringing in the perspective of younger veterans such as yourself, SPC Nancy Greene and a few other post Việt Nam vets commenting here.
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SN Charles Rickborn
SN Charles Rickborn
2 mo
[~1692709: SGT Robert Pryor I'll gladly loan you my size 13 steel toe boots to kick them. When I got home after TET, I went to the bowling alley with my family and girlfriend. Just as we got to the door, some drunk came out of the bar, called me a baby killer and took a swing at me. I used my size 13s that night. ( didn't want to hurt my throwing hand). Back then we had the draft dodgers now we have BLM and ANTIFA. The more things change the more they stay the same. Just my 2 cents
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CWO3 Dennis M.
CWO3 Dennis M.
2 mo
SPC Nancy Greene - Not sure if I mentioned this to you, but I was born and raised on Long Island, and joined the Navy from Long Island.
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SPC Nancy Greene
SPC Nancy Greene
2 mo
CWO3 Dennis M. I think you did mention LI and I told you I lived in Syosset. Used to go to Jones Beach on the weekends!CWO3 Dennis M.
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MAJ Dale E. Wilson, Ph.D.
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An 11th ACR AH-1G unleashes a barrage of rocket and minigun fire in support of attacking M113 ACAVs and an M48A3 Patton tank:
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Lt Col John (Jack) Christensen
Lt Col John (Jack) Christensen
2 mo
Do you have a whole other house for your artwork?
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Lt Col John (Jack) Christensen
Lt Col John (Jack) Christensen
2 mo
MAJ Dale E. Wilson, Ph.D. Artist liberty again, that #2 is actually one mile back.
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MAJ Dale E. Wilson, Ph.D.
MAJ Dale E. Wilson, Ph.D.
2 mo
Lt Col John (Jack) Christensen It's all digital images. . . .
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SP5 Infantryman
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SGT Robert Pryor - There were 3 towed guns 105 155 and 102...
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SFC Contract Administrator
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CWO3 Dennis M.
CWO3 Dennis M.
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SFC (Join to see) Thank you for the kind words on the history post, and it is my please to do so and will continue as long as I can. Have a great evening my friend! Stay safe.
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