Marine Corps Tank Battles In Vietnam

Oscar Gilbert

In 1965 the tanks of 3rd Platoon, B Company, 3rd Tank Battalion landed on a beach near Da Nang, drawing unwelcome attention to America's first, almost covert, commitment of ground troops in South Vietnam.
Publication date:
December 2007
Publisher :
Casemate
Language:
English
Illustration :
16 pages of b/w photos
Format Available     Quantity Price
Hardback
ISBN : 9781932033663

Dimensions : 240 X 159 cm
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£25.00
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Overview
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In 1965 the tanks of 3rd Platoon, B Company, 3rd Tank Battalion landed on a beach near Da Nang, drawing unwelcome attention to America’s first, almost covert, commitment of ground troops in South Vietnam. As the Marine Corps presence grew, the 1st and 3rd Tank Battalions, as well as elements of the reactivated 5th Tank Battalion, were committed to the conflict.

For the United States Marine Corps the protracted and bloody struggle was marked by controversy, but for Marine Corps tankers it was marked by bitter frustration as they saw their own high levels of command turn their backs on some of the hardest-won lessons of tank-infantry cooperation learned in the Pacific War.

Nevertheless, like good Marines, the officers and enlisted men of the tank battalions sought out the enemy in the sand dunes, jungles, mountains, paddy fields, tiny villages, and ancient cities of Vietnam. Young Marine tankers fresh out of training, and cynical veterans of the Pacific War and Korea, battled two enemies. The battle-hardened Viet Cong were masters of the art of striking hard, then slipping away to fight another day. The highly motivated troops of the North Vietnamese Army, equipped with long-range artillery and able to flee across nearby borders, engaged the Marines in brutal conventional combat.

It was a brutal and schizophrenic war, with no front and no rear, absolutely no respite from constant danger, against a merciless foe hidden among a helpless civilian population. Some of the duties the tankers were called upon to perform were long familiar, as they provided firepower and mobility for the suffering infantry in a never-ending succession of search and destroy operations, conducted amphibious landings, and added their heavy guns to the artillery in fire support missions. Under constant threat of ambushes and huge command-detonated mines that could obliterate both tank and crew in an instant, the tankers escorted vital supply convoys, and guarded the engineers who built and maintained the roads.

To the bitter end—despite the harsh conditions, confusion, endless debilitating combat, and ultimate frustration as their own nation turned against the war—the Marine tankers routinely demonstrated the versatility, dedication and courage that Americans have come to expect of their Marines.

REVIEWS

This is an enthralling account of tank combat in Vietnam from the Marine perspective based largely on first hand accounts from veterans.
Aviation Enthusiast Book Club

... an effective picture of the War from a Marine Corps tanker's point of view.
Classic Military Vehicle

If you have any interest in the Vietnam War or military history in general I can thoroughly recommend Marine Corps Tank Battles in Vietnam as a great read that"s very hard to put down once you have started.
Model Military International