BATTLE OF INDO-CHINA: Siege of Nasan

BATTLE OF INDOCHINA

A three-quarter moon shone down on the milewide, heavily fortified French perimeter at Nasan, south of the Black River. In the lumpy hills around Nasan lurked 20,000 Viet Minh Communist guerrillas. For several nights the French Union troops had expected attack. They crouched in their holes, not smoking, talking in whispers, waiting. The moon glinted on gun barrels, steel helmets, barbed wire.

One night last week, a few minutes before midnight, the Reds blew their bugles. Then they attacked, driving thick-packed herds of water buffalo before them, to clear paths through...

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