South Viet Nam: The U.S. Has the Initiative

Scarcely four months ago, on the eve of the monsoons, the Viet Cong scented victory as well as rain in the air. They had successfully moved from Phase 1 (political agitation) in the Red guerrilla manual of arms to Phase 2 (terrorism and small-unit battles). Hoping the monsoons would give them haven, they readied Phase 3: all-out battalion and regiment-size assaults on the frayed and battle-weary South Vietnamese army.

But something happened on the way to Phase 3. The skies indeed opened up — and rained napalm, machine-gun bullets and Bull-Pup missiles from U.S. fighter-bombers, which by last week were flying...

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