The World: What It Means For Vietnamization

Laos was ARVN's first major test without American advisers and against seasoned North Vietnamese regulars. But was it a "milestone" for Vietnamization, as President Nixon described it, or a sharp setback?

The results were both encouraging and dismaying. The U.S. command's assessment that 18 of the 22 ARVN battalions "fought well" is slightly suspect, if only because a great many of the 22,000 troops were employed in occupying static positions and counting enemy bodies after U.S. air strikes. But in general, discipline was high, and there was reason to believe that the South Vietnamese...

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