View the H-War Discussion Logs by month
View the Prior Message in H-War's January 2010 logs by: [date] [author] [thread]
View the Next Message in H-War's January 2010 logs by: [date] [author] [thread]
Visit the H-War home page.
I have to disagree about comparisons between Khe Sanh and DBF from the Communist side. The French were in no less of a "power" position in 1954 than the US forces were in 1968. At DBP, the Communists just took advantage of a major French tactical and operational blunder to destroy a large group of elite French units. To them how could Khe Sanh not look like the same thing? It was a force of elite (in this case Marines) enemy troops stationed at a large but remote airbase that was close to sanctuary areas on three sides. The Americans probably looked ripe for the picking as an augment to the Tet Offensive. The French experience had made the Communists underestimate the Americans, both in resolve and in military power. The American response was much more than a few B-52 strikes. The whole 1st Cavalry Division was shifted to the Khe Sanh area and in the following operation, If the communists' intention was not similar to DBP, then what was it? To fight an attritional battle like Verdun? A diversionary attack for something else? Another DBP may have been impossible in 1968 but whether the Communikst North Vietnamese realized that until after they were defeated at Khe Sanh is questionable. I think the comparison is a very appropriate one. Underestimating of American military forces is a theme found in many modern battles. No American positions have ever been overrun and seized in either Iraq or Afghanistan yet the insurgents frequently and continually have tried to do so, usually with inadequate forces. John J. McGrath "McGrath, John J CIV USA TRADOC" <email@example.com> ----- For subscription help, go to: http://www.h-net.org/lists/help/ To change your subscription settings, go to http://h-net.msu.edu/cgi-bin/wa?SUBED1=h-war -----