Airpower and the Airlift Evacuation of Kham Duc: USAF Southeast Asia Monograph Series Volume V, Monograph 7

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9781477540480: Airpower and the Airlift Evacuation of Kham Duc: USAF Southeast Asia Monograph Series Volume V, Monograph 7
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This volume has value for both the general reader and the aviation specialist. For the latter there are lessons regarding command and control and combined-unit operations that need to be learned to achieve battlefield success. For the former there is a straightforward narrative about American aviators of all four services struggling in the most difficult of conditions to try to rescue more than 1,500 American and Vietnamese military and civilians. Not all Americans moving through the events recounted in this monograph acted heroically, but most did, and it was that heroism that gave the evacuation the success it had. This volume is fully documents so that the reader wishing to look deeper into this incident may do so. Those who study the battle will see that it was something of a microcosm of the entire Vietnam War in the relationship of airpower to tactical ground efforts. Kham Duc sat at the bottom of a small green mountain bowl, and during most of 12 May 1968 the sky was full of helicopters, forward air controller aircraft, transports, and fighters, all striving to succeed and to avoid running into each other in what were most trying circumstances. In the end they carried the day, though by the narrowest of margins and heavy losses. Office of Air Force History, United States Air Force.

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About the Author:

Lieutenant Colonel Alan L. Gropman has been a long-time student of military history. His interest in the evacuation of Kham Duc was both of his many years as a C-130 navigator, the loss of several friends during the evacuation and his long friendship with one of the last men rescued.

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