As another Lame Cherry exclusive in matter anti matter.
One of the worst tragedies of the Vietnam War, was the American leftist propagated the most treasonous propaganda of the communist world, and then some inept writer like HR McMaster bores the world to death with the subject that political wars are no different than military wars, because in one the White House gives money to the military contractors and in the other the Pentagon gives money to the military contractors.
There was in the period of the Ted Offensive which was a disaster for the communist North Vietnamese and the reality that the NVA used the Vietcong in having the Americans obliterate them to oblivion in that spoiled military operation, as Walter Cronkite whined that all was lost, when Americans piled up enemy bodies like cord wood, that in the north there was a battle of several months a Khe Sahn, the Marine Base, which the American media kept lying about being another Dien Bien Phu, which was a French loss to the communists.
Battle of Dien Bien Phu; Part of the First Indochina War: French Union paratroopers dropping from a C-119 transport
Khe Sahn was nothing of the sort in mirroring the French failure, and while the Americans were under siege, there was never any threat of their bases being overrun or surrendered, once the situation was sorted out after the first week.
In this examination, the Lame Cherry looks at one of the components which crushed the North Vietnamese and that was the Arc Light Raids of the B 52 bombers, in carpet bombing the jungles.
Vietnam witnessed a number of superb American invention, and one was dropping listening devices in the jungles and when those transmitters picked up enemy activity, there would be raids coordinated on the 15 hour turn around of the B 52's flying out of the Pacific.
There really is nothing in this world that can compare to an American carpet bombing run in the conventional iron bombs with high explosives and set in a detonation pattern of extreme force. When the fighting at Khe Sahn first erupted the B 52's orders were two clicks from American positions, meaning the bombers would only drop payloads 2 kilometers from the American positions as drift would endanger the Americans in the bombs falling.
By the end of the campaign the B 52's were cleared to 1 kilometer which is still almost a mile, but they were improving their carpet bombing in delivery and it had great effect.
The words of the communists NVA were the testimony which counted, and in this series of quotes there are poignant insights to the effectiveness of carpet bombing on enemy positions.
People who came here say it rains bombs.
Khe Sahn was a large area on the DMZ and Laotian border. This was not some small area, and yet the NVA could not get away from the carpet bombing in effect. The elite who would appear would leave the area aghast at how the bombs seemed to fall like rain. The concussion of the big bombs sent shockwaves over the landscape.
The Marines would come out and watch the Arc Light Raids to their great delight as there is something thrilling at witnessing that kind of firepower being unleashed.
The bombing hurt our lungs.
The reason for this hurt was air pressure or shockwaves in the detonation of hundreds of large bombs set off in pattern. The lung hurt zone as a few steps away from having your life knocked out of you or your lungs or heart bursting inside of you. That is the most pertinent effect of good warfare. You want your enemy to be in pain or terror in expecting bad things. That moves them to stop fighting and in many cases the NVA had mass desertions once the B 52's were unleashed.
This is no small thing as the communists shot people for just looking disloyal.
This is the strategic effect and it is the essence of carpet bombing. The big bombs knocked the life out of everything above the surface and buried the communists in tunnels below the surface. There was not anywhere to run or hide.
The bombs kill everything. Plants, animals, people. It buries them in the deep tunnels.
The Americans learned to advance their attacks also in Mini Arc's, where they would coordinate in 1000 and 500 meter areas where the enemy was observed, and within moments of a salvo had Intruder aircraft and artillery peppering an area, as the Marine artillery walked across it.
All of this was most effective as the enemy would be flushed, and then it would be chased by the high explosives. Entire platoons just vanished in these bombing runs.
General Westmoreland stated that it was the Arc Light which broke the enemy outside of Khe Sahn in a magnificent display of firepower to suppress the constant bombardment of the NVA on American bases, which would run from 100 to 1000 rounds of mortars or missiles striking the bases.
Life was not easy on the Fire Bases under this onslaught in water was short, as were most supplies, as it all had to be air dropped in. It was a constant din of warfare in routines of removing the dead and wounded, rebuilding cared in bunkers, moving ammunition and in off times reading a book listening for incoming or playing bunker ball, which was an interesting game of throwing footballs from foxhole to bunkers and those who fumbled had to race out and grab the ball before being wounded or killed.
This is a lesson of the Arc Light Raids, an effective response at fire suppression of the enemy and a strategy to break the enemy's will to inflict murder on American forces.