The World: Incident on Route 9

The force of the Communist counterattack in Laos was felt as far as the South Vietnamese side of the border, where U.S. troops were struggling to keep Route 9 open. At Lang Vei, near the border, TIME Correspondent David Greenway came upon Bravo Troop, an armored cavalry unit of the Americal Division. Fatigued, red-eyed and black with dirt and dust, the troopers had the comatose look of men pushed beyond their limit.

During one run down Route 9 toward Lang Vei, Bravo Troop stumbled into an ambush, and the company commander's armored personnel carrier (APC) was stopped by a mine. "We called...

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