By Lou Drendel
Publication via Drendel, Lou
Read or Download Air War Over Southeast Asia: A Pictorial Record Vol. 1, 1962-1966 PDF
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Additional info for Air War Over Southeast Asia: A Pictorial Record Vol. 1, 1962-1966
Jump training was conducted by the MIKE Forces themselves or in a formal two-week course at the LLDB Training Center at Dong Ba Thin run by B-Sl. This school could train one 132-man MSF company per month in a three-week course, but if necessary increasedtempo training could qualify one battalion a month. It also provided a five-week CRP course. Difficulties were occasionally encountered with the quality of personnel. An early 1966 report on the I Corps MIKE Force revealed the following: It has become evident that the MIKE Force is not ready to conduct company-size operations; the CIDG platoon leaders have no eye for the ground and are reluctant to coordinate their platoon movements with that of other platoons and the rest of the company.
US operational command arrangements were different. The MIKE Forces might have been made OPCON to one of four US corps-equivalent commands. III Marine Amphibious Force was responsible for all US forces in I CTZ including Army. From 1968 Army units in I CTZ were under XXIV Corps, itself under III MAE I Field Force, Vietnam was responsible for US units in II CTZ, and II FFV was responsible for units in III CTZ. The 5th MSFC usually remained under direct Group control. Regardless of the command assigning a mission to a MIKE Force, the operation had to be approved by 5th SFGA.
Plastic" M3 assault boats (actually made of fiberglass and 17ft. 8in. 4m] long) propelled by 40-hp outboards, which could carry up to 12 men. The RB-3 and RB-IS were threeand IS-man pneumatic boats propelled by paddles, or an outboard in the latter case. Sampans were sometimes used in the Mekong Delta and Montagnard dugouts on rivers. The 4th MSFC in the Mekong Delta was frequently transported by Navy Mobile Riverine Force armored troop carriers, and river and coastal patrol boats. Aircat airboat The US tested two airboats during the 1964 and 1965 Mekong Delta wet seasons, the Hurricane Aircat and Susquehanna Skimmer.