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The Battle Of Ia Drang Valley

1927 words - 8 pages

Introduction: In 1962, Secretary of Defense Robert Strange McNamara felt it was vital to our military to take a long hard look at our tactics, and begin to take aggressive steps at land warfare mobility. Thus, the birth of the Tactical Mobility Requirements Board more commonly known as the “Howze Board” with this began the building of five Air Assault Divisions. These measures were taken with the thought of being able to be affective in mid- intensity European conflicts. The Army started the transition from having fixed winged aircraft to investing its resources in rotary aircraft; with the development of the turbine engine, it allowed the Army to be the undisputed innovator of the armed helicopter. With this concept of providing superior fire support for the ground forces mainly infantry ensured that, the creation of such a force would be the most influential and greatest asset in the war. Because of the terrain and the guerilla tactics used by the enemy, the American air dominance allowed smaller elements to be successful, this lead to countless victories and the overwhelming success of the armed helicopter concept of warfare. This lead to the wide usage of helicopter and helicopter tactical deployments, to the area of operation, which allowed free mobility in the jungle dense terrain of Vietnam and thus the tactical advantage, The Air Cavalry also used the helicopter for fast transport and insertion of Howitzers, which ensured fire support in remote and isolated areas. “The King of Battle” Field Artillery was vital to the success of many conflicts. It would have an important say in the outcome of many wars dating back hundreds of year. The Vietnam War would be no different combining air mobility tactics with the tried and proven tactics of the Field Artillery. This would only ensure success on the many nameless battlefields and forgotten heroics by the brave men of the United States Army and United States Marines starting with the first major engagement in November of 1965, forever engraining the IA Drang Valley in the American imagination. The political environment at the time was that of a nation still reeling from the loss of a beloved President, which had loss his life to a cowardly gunman in the fall of 1963. The new President of the United States President Johnson was finishing the last year of President Kennedy’s tenure and taking a hard stand against communism, America was fresh out of the communist scare of the 1950’s including the McCarty hearings. Therefore, anything that had to do with communism America was without a doubt going to take a stand and hold the line. This time in our nation’s history was a time of East versus West Democracy verses Communism America was trying to teach foreign nations the concepts and positives of our system, how they too can prosper with the use of Capitalism. On the other hand, Russia was spreading its theology on the pros of Socialism and how their system would lead to prosperity. Both nations were...

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