Wednesday, July 3, 2019

TheList 5036

The List 5036 TGB

I hope that you all had a great weekend.


Today in Naval History
July 1

1801 Commodore Richard Dale's squadron arrives at Gibraltar for the protection of American interests and to strike at the Barbary Pirates in the Mediterranean. Squadron ships were USS President, USS Philadelphia, USS Essex, and USS Enterprise.

1850 The Naval School at Annapolis, Md., is renamed the U.S. Naval Academy and adopts a four-year course of study. Also on this date, Commander Cornelius K. Stribling becomes the first Superintendent of the Naval Academy and serves until the fall of 1853.

1911 Designer Glenn Curtiss makes the first flight in the Navys first aircraft, Curtiss A 1, at Lake Keuka, NY, and prepares Lt. Theodore G. Ellyson, the first Naval Aviator, for his two A 1 solo flights.

1918 USS Covington (No. 1409), is torpedoed by German submarine (U 86) and sinks the next day while in tow. Of the 776 onboard, all but six are saved.

1931 USS Constitution is re-commissioned after a four-year, nearly $1 million restoration. The next day, the ship and crew began a three-year, three-coast tour of the U.S., visiting 76 ports and hosting 4.6 million people; the tour, known as the "National Cruise", was intended to thank U.S. citizens who had supported "Old Ironsides'" restoration.

1946 The atmospheric nuclear weapon test, Able, is detonated during Operation Crossroads at the Bikini Atoll, Marshall Islands.

1972 Rear Adm. Samuel L. Gravely Jr. becomes the first African-American to achieve flag rank in the U.S. Navy.

1995 USS Whirlwind (PC 11) is commissioned in Memphis, TN. The 11th Cyclone-class patrol craft is currently homeported in Manama, Bahrain.

Thanks to CHINFO

Executive Summary:

• Today's national headlines include a plane crash in Dallas that killed ten people.

• President Trump met with Kim Jong Un in the Demilitarized Zone, becoming the first sitting American president to set foot in North Korea. The two agreed to restart nuclear negotiations at the meeting.

• CNN reported on Russia's plans to tow a nuclear power station via the Northern Sea Route to the nation's Far East as Russia continues its Arctic expansion.

• The U.S. Navy's Sixth Fleet announced its participation in Sea Breeze 2019, a 19-nation naval exercise hosted by Ukraine which begins today, reports


Today in History: July 1

0069 Vespasian, a Roman army leader, is hailed as a Roman emperor by the Egyptian legions.

1543 England and Scotland sign the Peace of Greenwich.

1596 An English fleet under the Earl of Essex, Lord Howard of Effingham and Francis Vere capture and sack Cadiz, Spain.

1690 Led by Marshall Luxembourg, the French defeat the forces of the Grand Alliance at Fleurus in the Netherlands.

1777 British troops depart from their base at the Bouquet River to head toward Ticonderoga, New York.

1798 Napoleon Bonaparte takes Alexandria, Egypt.

1838 Charles Darwin presents a paper on his theory of evolution to the Linnean Society in London.

1862 Union artillery stops a Confederate attack at Malvern Hill, Virginia.

1863 In the first day's fighting at Gettysburg, Federal forces retreat through the town and dig in at Cemetery Ridge and Cemetery Hill.

1867 Canada, by the terms of the British North America Act, becomes an independent dominion.

1876 Montenegro declares war on the Turks.

1898 American troops take San Juan Hill and El Caney, Cuba, from the Spaniards.

1916 The Battle of the Somme begins. Approximately 30,000 men are killed on the first day, two-thirds of them British.

1942 Axis troops capture Sevastopol, Crimea, in the Soviet Union.

1945 The New York State Commission Against Discrimination is established--the first such agency in the United States.

1950 American ground troops arrive in South Korea to halt the advancing North Korean army.

1961 British troops land in Kuwait to aid against Iraqi threats.

1963 The U.S. postmaster introduces the ZIP code.

1966 The U.S. Marines launch Operation Holt in an attempt to finish off a Vietcong battalion in Thua Thien Province in Vietnam.


Thanks to Carl

The 777 Mystery

This is a long read but informative and interesting. Not sure if their conclusion is correct but it's at least believable.



June 30, 2019 Bear Taylor




LEST WE FORGET… DURING THE WEEK ENDING 6 APRIL 1969 A TOTAL OF 266 BRAVE AMERICAN YOUTH PERISHED ON THE BATTLEFIELDS OF SOUTHEAST ASIA BRINGING THE TOTAL AMERICAN LOSSES FOR THE LAST SIX WEEKS OF THE ENEMY'S SPRING OFFENSIVE TO 1,940 KIA. ENEMY LOSSES–VIETCONG AND NORTH VIETNAMESE WERE PUT AT 26,359. SOUTH VIETNAMESE LOSSES IN THE SIX WEEK PERIOD WERE 2,046 KIA…. Ralph Waldo Emerson, before he died in 1882, concluded: "War, to sane men at the present day, begins to look like an epidemic of insanity, breaking out here and there like the cholera or influenza, infecting men's brains instead of their bowels."… Then came the Century of War– insanity-sustained– of two World Wars, the Korean War, the Cold War, the Vietnam War and hundreds of conflicts across the globe. Reasonable men in the 21st century might ask: Is there no cure for this "epidemic of insanity" short of the death of the nation?… A question to ponder on this 243rd birthday of our nation: ARE WE MAD?…

Good Morning. It's Monday, 1 July 2019. Humble Host remembers week TWENTY-TWO of Operation COMMANDO HUNT, the three years of the interdiction war fought over the Ho Chi Minh Trail in southern Laos between Operation ROLLING THUNDER and the final intense air offense against Hanoi code-named Operation LINEBACKER I and II.

I… HEAD LINES from THE NEW YORK TIMES (7-13 April 1969)…

A… THE WAR… (7 Apr) VIETCONG ACTIVE IN THE HIGHLANDS–8 AMERICANS ARE KILLED AND 17 WOUNDED IN 7-HOUR FIGHT… "An American infantry force took serious losses in a seven hour fight against Vietcong in the Central Highlands yesterday… they were on patrol 28 miles west of Kontom in a sparsley populated area neat the Cambodian border heavily infiltrated by Vietcong and North Vietnamese troops… Artillery and American air strikes drove the enemy troops off in mid-afternoon. The bodies of 23 Vietcong soldiers were found in the area."… "Ground fighting elsewhere was light."… "United States fighter bombers were airborne 377 times against a daily average of 400 sorties during the enemy's spring offensive…The B-52s flew only four missions on the 6th."… (8 Apr) VIETCONG KILLED 11 G.I.'S IN GROUND ATTACK… "…infantrymen were at a camp six miles southeast of Baoloc, about 100 miles northeast of Saigon when the enemy troops opened a ground assault after a heavy mortar attack just before dawn. The mortar barrage pinned the United States soldiers down until the enemy got close enough to fire machine guns and rocket=p;ropelled grenades into the camp, but none of the Vietcong broke through the wire."… "Elsewhere in South Vietnam the fighting remained at low level"… (9 Apr) ENEMY ROCKETS AGAIN STRIKE SAIGON–MISSILES LAND 2 TO 3 MILES NORTH OF THE CENTER OF THE CITY… "…it was the seventh such attack since the enemy offensive was launched on Feb. 22″…"United States marines captured a Vietnamese hospital and bunker complex southwest of Danang… the hospital was empty but they found the graves of 35 Vietcong and North Vietnamese soldiers who had presumably been killed in air strikes in the area."… IN LAOS, LAOTIAN TROOPS PULLED BACK IN SOUTH–They Shift to Hill Positions To Guard Rich Bolivens Plateau Against North Vietnamese… (10 Apr) HANOI IS REPORTED FIGHTING APATHY– Letdown After Bombing Halt Said To Trouble Regime–Reports Reach Saigon… "…the end of American bombing has left North Vietnam with intensified problems of public apathy, corruption and flagging discipline."… "…draft-dodging, always a problem, has evidently become worse in recent months."… B-52 RAIDS AIM AT ENEMY CAMPS NEAR CAMBODIA… (Op Menu?)"…analysts said that most of the North Vietnamese First and Seventh divisions had been pulled back to the Cambodian border for replacements and supplies after heavy losses during the offensive that began Feb. 23…. the B-52 targets were within 2 miles of the Cambodian border."…. 47 VIETCONG KILLED IN FIGHTING IN MEKONG DELTA… "U.S. infantrymen ambushed 75 Vietcong soldiers in the Mekong Delta last night and killed 47 without any losses… "… (11 Apr) TOLL IN VIETNAM DOWN FOR WEEK–Two Sides Toll of Dead Is Lowest Since Foe Began Drive Six Weeks Ago… "… the military spokesman added, however, that there still was too much fighting to consider the six-week old offensive ended."… "The enemy still has reserves he has not committed,…"… (12 Apr) ENEMY STEPS UP DRIVE IN VIETNAM–Hits 45 Targets–100 Rounds Strike Vinhlong Killing 15–Combat In Two Battle Zoners sharpens… "The enemy's spring offensive flared sharply last night as it approaches its seventh week. Allied Commanders reported 45 mortar and rocket attacks struck military installations and civilian communities throughout South Vietnam during the night. Two of the shellings were the most damaging of the offensive."… "American aircraft also killed 61 enemy soldiers near an enemy antiaircraft site two miles east of the Cambodian border in Tayninh Province according to the report."… (13 Apr) ENEMY SHELLINGS IN VIETNAM DROP TO 30–Hanoi Reports Attack–B-52s Bomb Near Saigon… TENSIONS OF BLACK POWER REACH VIETNAM… "After a few narrowly averted racial explosions, most senior United States military officials believe that there is no longer any doubt that the black-power issue and its tensions have come to the United States troops in Vietnam. Once American commanders pointed to almost exceptionally calm relations between black and white, but many are working hard now to prevent more violent incidents growing out of the racial situations."… "Some Negroes are refusing to obey orders that send them into what they call a white man's war, the percentage who make such decisions remain quite small. Further, Negro officers and non commissioned officers are far stricter with Negro militants in many cases than are their white counterparts."… "Official reaction to the clenched fist and black flags is mixed. Marines say the fist salute used as a greeting is as acceptable as a waved hand or a fraternity handshake. Black power flages may be displayed in wall lockers or at bunks."…

B… THE PURSUIT OF PEACE IN PARIS… In lieu of headlines, Humble Host goes to the 8 April New York Times opinion editorial (OpEd) for a general picture of where the Peace Talks stood in April 1969. On 7 April Secretary of State William Rogers held a press conference. He was asked a question about the Peace Talks: Q. "Do you have any realistic hope that troop withdrawals can begin from Vietnam either as a result of some agreement with the North Vietnamese this year or perhaps unilaterally?" Rogers answered: "I would certainly hope that there would be some chance of mutual withdrawal of troops this year. And, as I said in my testimony, we are prepared to do that at once if the other side is. You can't have mutual withdrawal of troops unless there is some mutuality. As far as the unilateral withdrawal of the troops is concerned, I don't want to say anything about that beyond what the President has said. We are considering all possibiliites. We don't anticipate any immediate withdrawal of troops." With that, the NYT editorial staff had this to say:


"Secretary of State Rogers has now made it official that the Administration has completed its Vietnam polcy review and finally set in motion a policy for ending the war–presumably through coordinated diplomatic, political and military measures. That is welcome news, even though historians will have to decide whether it was wise to wait five months after the election and ten weeks after the inauguration to reach this stage. In negotiating with Asian Communists, President Nixon evidently felt it specially important not to appear overeager. He has made his point. The question now is whether it is essential to keep remaking it by continuing the leisurely pace.

"The central issue is how long to persist in the demand at Paris for agreed mutual withdrawals of American and North Vietnamese troops as the chief military approach to a settlement. It is a reasonable proposal, one Hanoi is unwise to resist. Yet, the reality is that the Communists do insist on first seeing the shape of the political settlement in South Vietnam. This undoubtedly will be the last element agreed in the negotiation, for the question of how South Vietnam is to be governed–and by whom–is what the war is essentially all about. The United States, which wanted to discuss troop withdrawals first, has agreed to have a political settlement discussed simultaneously. But this formula implies delaying withdrawals, along with a political settlement, until a package agreement is reached. Moreover, it is a formula that transfers to others the timing of American disengagement, since the Saigon Government and the Vietcong are the ones who will have the primary responsibility for the political negotiations.

"The political discussions are unlikely to move rapidly, despite the major steps forward taken recently by Saigon. Having agreed to direct secret talks with the Vietcong, President Thieu yesterday advanced a valid opening position for negotiations by offering the Vietcong free elections and a place on the ballot under another name. His chief Paris negotiator has gone further and spoken of setting an early date for general elections when the fighting stops and of holding them under international control. But the difficult question of how power is to be divided or shared in an Asian country lacking a democratic tradition undoubtedly will require lengthy bargaining before the elections.

"These negotiations are more likely to be retarded than advanced by a high level of military activity. A cutback in American search-and-destroy missions clearly identified as a link to the current lull in Communist military activity might succeed in bringing about a tacit mutual de-escalation. Initiation of American troop withdrawal with an offer of further reductions if North Vietnam reciprocates, would then become possible. Total withdrawal, of course, will require a formal agreement providing for international supervision to inhibit a return of Hanoi's forces. But there is no reason why initial military steps, both to de-escalate the war and reduce American forces, cannot be undertaken by tacit example."…

(Humble Host Note: The Vietnam Peace Talks provided a painful history lesson on how difficult it is to get out of a war. Too bad our State Department doesn't have a "Pass Down the Line Log" for the painful lessons. Please note similarities between our Vietnam lesson and the onging flail for peace and an exit from Afghanistan.)

C… OTHER HEADLINES FROM THE NYT from the week of 7-13 April 1969… (7 Apr) POPE EMPHASIZES MESSAGES OF JOY IN EASTER SPEECH–Homily Calls On Modern Man To Find Happiness Through Resurrection Meaning–Thousands At Basilica–Pessimistic Overtones Are Indirect In Reaffirmation of Christian Teachings… "…The Pope stressed the promise of happiness inherent in the most joyous day of the Christian calendar, marking belief in Christ's resurrection."… BASEBALL SEASON OPENS TODAY… SOVIET-CHINESE DISPUTE: Restraint On The Border Conflict Believed To Indicate Wider Clash is Unlikely… (8 Apr) ARAB ROCKET ATTACK INJURES 8 IN ELATH–Israeli Planes Reply… NIXON OPENS BASEBALL SEASON–Two Errors… ROGERS PREDICTS PARLEY WITH SOVIET IN LATE SPRING… HIGH COURT DECIDES OBSCENE MATTER IN HOME IS LEGAL–What A Man Reads or What Films He Sees In Private Is Ruled His Own Affair… (9 Apr) DRAFT JUDGE BARS A MOTHER'S PLEA–Son She Had Forbidden To Register For Draft Is Convicted… PEACE GROUP BIDS U.S. ASK CEASE-FIRE… U.S. EASES STAND IN BID RUSSIANS ON ATOMIC OUTPUT–It Would Let International Unit Verify Halt In Arms Material Production–Issue Long Deadlocked–Move Challenges Soviet to Acceed–Formula Patterned on Non-Proliferation Pact… PERIL FOUND IN COLOR TVS…"Twenty-per cent of the color television sets in Suffolk County are believed to be emitting X-rays at a harmful level…"… (10 Apr) DEBRE IN U.S. SAYS FRANCE REMAINS FAITHFUL TO NATO–Meets With Rogers Before Pacts Anniversary Session–Cooperation Is Stressed–Differences Conceded–But Ministers Discern 'New Climate of Trust' After Nixon-de Gualle Talks… NATO Pondering Course As it Enters Third Decade… SOVIET CONDEMNS WEST ALLIANCE–Calls It A Peril to Peace and Appeals For an End Of Both Military Blocs… SEVEN MORE SOVIET WARSHIPS ENTER THE MEDITERRANEAN–Task Force Moving From Atlantic is Being Watched By U.S. Sixth Fleet… (11 Apr) HUSSEIN IN U.S. PLEDGES ISRAELIS USE OF CANAL–Says He Also Is Speaking For Nasser As He Outlines A 6-Point Plan For Peace Between Arabs and Israel… 400 POLICE QUELL HARVARD UPRISING–41 Students Hurt In Charge On University Hall–1,500 Vote A Boycott… STUDENTS OCCUPY STANFORD ELECTRONICS LAB–Classes Resume At Southern U….Arrests Assailed At Temple… MEASELS OUTBREAK PROMPTS CITY TO PRESS VACCINATION CAMPAIGN–1,588 Cases In First Three Months of 1969–Total Cases For '68 Were 255 and in 1967 148… (12 Apr) NIXON CUTS BACK JOHNSON AWARDS OF AIRLINE ROUTES–Continental And Braniff Lose Bids In Pacific–TWA Will Fly Around the World… REMARKS BY ROGERS STIRS FEAR IN SOUTH VIETNAM… NATO TO EXPLORE OUTLOOK ON TALKS WITH SOVIET BLOC–Alliance Plans Study of Best Ways To Begin Negotiation On Concrete Issues–Two Day Parley Ends–Communique Avoids a Reply to Warsaw Pact Bid for East-West Conference… ISRAEL DISMISSES HUSSEIN'S OFFER–Declare Jordanian's Peace Plan Is Propaganda and Contains Nothing New… ARTIC OCEAN STUDY EASES FEAR THAT A NEW ICE AGE IS IN OFFING… HARVARD FACULTY ASSAILS PROTESTERS AND UNIVERSITY … (13 Apr) PRESIDENT CUTS BUDGET–Surplus Nears $6- Billion–Reduction Of $4- Billlion From Johnson Figure to Bring Biggest Excess Since 1959–Domestic Spending Up… CITIES RIOTS SITES REMAIN DESOLATE–Burned Out Buildings Stand Unrepaired–Controversy Slows Rebuilding Drive… STUDENT'S DELAYS IN DRAFT UPHELD–Judge Also Backs Exemptions of Ministers… GOLDA MEIR HARSH ON BIG FOUR TALKS–Asserts Direct Negotiations Are Only Path to Peace… CAIRO REJECTS HUSSEIN'S PEACE PLAN–But Hussein Buoyant Over Talks In U.S.–Monarch In Interview Lauds Administration's Role…



"Improved weather conditions during the last half of March resulted in increased reconnaissance activity. 197 tactical reconnaissance sorties were flown, up from 93 in February. USAF aircraft flew 129 of the tactical reconnaissance sorties and began flying jet Forward Air Controllers into North Vietnam to perform visual reconnaissance on Routes 8, 15, 137 and 1036. Vehicle sightings per sortie in March remained virtually unchanged from the February average. Waterborne logistics craft ("WIBLICS") sightings increased from February's 26 per sortie to 43. Quang Khe (north of Dong Hoi) appears to be in use again by small craft moving supplies. The enemy resupply activity remains at nearly the February level while he continues to improve his storage areas, distribution net and ability to move supplies.

"USAF air operations increased substantially in Laos despite deteriorating weather conditions. USAF attack sorties increased 16% to 9,612 in March and 8,489 USAF combat support sorties were flown. Laser camera equipped RF-4C aircraft are now in place which provide a night photographic capability without the use of photoflash cartridges.

"Pilots and Roadwatch Teams sighted 17,151 vehicles in Laos during March. Average daily sighting increased 12% to 553. 1,181 vehicles were destroyed or damaged, the highest total since April 1968. 13,375 secondary fires and explosions were reported, a high for the war.

"Barrel Roll attack sorties increased 32% to 1,255. FAR ground forces lost numerous sites despite increased air support. The removal of bombing restrictions from areas that were previously enemy sanctuaries opened vast depots, troop concentrations and training areas to tactical air strikes.

"USAF attack sorties in Steel Tiger increased 14% to 8,357. Approximately 16% delivered ordnance under Combat Skyspot system and 2% used Commando Nail procedures. Airpower continued to be effective in forestalling an enemy takeover of the Ban Thateng garrison. Average daily vehicle sightings in Steel Tiger increased approximately 16% over February. 13,427 vehicles were sighted by (Air Force) pilots and Roadwatch Teams during March.

"The enemy offensive in South Vietnam, initiated 23 February, continued throughout March. During the current offensive the emphasis appears to be on attacks against U.S. installations and field forces. Population centers were also shelled sporadically but with less intensity than during the February 1968 offensive. During March the allied KIA ratio increased to 8.8:1, the highest since February 1968.

"Incountry attack sorties increased 16.4% over February total to 17,903. BDA was generally up corresponding to the increased attack effort.

"March Southeast Asia Combat Skyspot sorties increased 19.2% over the February effort.

"1,822 Arc Light sorties were flown in Southeast Asia during March. 86.9% were flown in South Vietnam in an effort to blunt communist attempts to mount an effective post-Tet offensive.

"84 allied aircraft were lost to enemy action during March, the highest monthly total since May 1968. The overall combat loss rate in Southeast Asia increased. 16 USAF and 1 USN aircrtaft were lost over Laos. The USAF attack aircraft loss rate in Laos was the highest recorded in the past year. 67 allied aircraft were destroyed by the enemy in South Vietnam, 11 on the ground during attacks against airfields, air bases and forward operating locations. The enemy efforts to increase his air defense capability in Laos will continue to increase the air operations risk factor in Laos."

COMMANDO HUNT OPS specifics… "62% of Steel Tiger sorties were flown in the COMMANDO HUNT area of Southern Laos… USAF attack sorties totalled 6,071; USN/USMC, 1,390. The effort against various targets was distributed in the following approximate manner: 40% against Traffic Control Points (TCPs), 30% against truckpark/storage areas, 18% against vehicles, 6% against defenses and 6% against other targets. Estimated daily enemy vehicle input to the COMMANDO HUNT area was 89 trucks, approximately equal to February's input.

"BDA for the month in COMMANDO HUNT includes 591 vehicles destroyed, 192 damaged. 468 secondary explosions, 2,293 secondary fires and 545 road cuts. Intentions for the COMMANDO HUNT area during April are to continue to impede enemy access to the Laotian LOCs and to destroy vehicles and supplies located throughout the area. To accomplish this the strike effort will consist of approximately 245 sorties per day."

III. AIRCRAFT LOSSES IN SOUTHEAST ASIA: 7-13 APRIL 1969…References include Chris Hobson's VIETNAM AIR LOSSES. During the week ending 13 April the United States lost seven (7) fixed wing aircraft and six (6) gallant aviators…

(1) On 8 April a Marine OV-10A of VMQ-2 and MAG-16 out of Marble Mountain (east of Danang) flown by 1LT JOSEPH L. STONE, USMC, and 1LTM.R. CATHEY, USMC, was lost on a visual reconnaissance mission 20 miles south of Danang. The aircraft was hit in the port engine on the third stafing attack on a river crossing point. Control of the aircraft became impossible as the second engine failed and the pair of marines ejected to chute into two companies of North Vietnamese troops. A marine Huey witnessed the event and charged into the middle of the melee to rescue both 1LT STONE and 1LT CATHEY. The two grateful evaders boarded the skids of the helo and hung on for dear life for a 20 mile ride in the open to Danang. Love to hear this story at Happy Hour… Who were those USMC Huey crewmembers?…

(2) On 8 April an EB-66 of the 42nd TEWS and 355th TFW out of Takhli crewed by LCOL EDWIN P. ANDERSON, LCOL JAMES ELLSWORTH RICKETTS, and CAPTAIN JOSEPH M. ORLOWSKI lost an engine on takeoff and was unable to sustain a climb and crashed in a rice paddy at the end of the runway killing all three of the aviators. LCOL ANDERSON and CAPTAIN ORSLOWSKI were buried at the Golden Gate National Cemetery at San Bruno, California. LCOL RICKETTS rests in peace at Arlington National Cemetery. `

(3) On 9 April a Marine Playboy Fast FAC TA-4F of H&MS-11 and MAG-11 out of Danang piloted by MAJOR ROBERT S. MIECZNIKOWSKI, USMC, and CAPTAIN JAMES C. BUFFINGTON, USMC, was lost on a COMMANDO HUNT mission while attacking an enemy storage and encampment area 15 miles south of Ashau Valley. The aircraft was hit by 37mm fire on their second attack on the site. MAJOR MIECZNIKOWSKI was able to fly the crippled and failing Skyhawk a few miles before both aviators were required to eject. The pair evaded enemy troops on the ground near the Ashau Valley for about six hours before two Air Force HH-53 Jolly Green Giants from the 40th ARRS could get on scene. The Jolly Green crewed by CAPTAIN DONALD L. CARTY (P), G.RYNEARSON (CP), D.V. McLEOD (FE), DAVID M. DAVIDSON (PJ) and GEORGE SCHIPPER (PJ) made the rescue… The second HH-53 broke off a refueling probe and diverted to Channel 113 for an emergency landing…

(4) On 9 April an A-1E of the 22nd SOS and 56th SOW out of Nakhon Phanom piloted by MAJOR R.H. SHUMOCK was shot down on a night armed reconnaissance mission in the Barrel Roll area over the Plain of Jars. He was hit by small arms and automatic weapon fire on his ninth strike on a Pathet Lao storage area on the eastern edge of the Plain. He was able to get the venerable Spad into Thailand but was forced to eject 55 miles short of NKP where he was rescued to fly and fight again… Maybe not nine passes on the same target…

(5) On 12 April an A-7A Corsair II of the VA-147 Argonauts, Jason 2, embarked in USS Ranger piloted by LT MARK A. BUNKER suffered an engine failure on a combat mission and was recovered after ejecting. The Ranger completed her fourth deployment of the war on 16 April having lost four aircraft during the cruise–all four were operational losses, indicative of the lower level of opposition encountered in COMMANDO HUNT versus ops over North Vietnam…The rescue was made by a 37th ARRS HH-3E crewed by MAJOR RONALD HAGLAND (P), BRUCE E. PROUSE (CP), JAMES K. HALL (FE), AND GLENWOOD C. WILKINSON (PJ)… OOHRAH….

(6) On 12 April an F-4D of the 390th TFS and 366th TFW out of Danang piloted by MAJOR ERNEST LEO DESOTO and WSO 1LT FREDERICK MERVYN HALL was lost in South Vietnam within a few miles from the tri-border area of Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia. The Phantom was one of three conducting attacks in the area when it was hit by automatic weapons fire. The aircraft cleared the target and was last seen entering a cloud bank. Subsequent searches failed to locate the wreckage or the two warriors and they were listed as MIA and eventually "presumed killed in action," a status that pertains to this day. Left behind, the search goes on. A Memorial Headstone for MAJOR DESOTO is at Golden Gate National Cemetery. There are pages for remembrances for both warriors at the VVMF "Wall of Faces."

This Fourth of July would be a good time for those of us who survived to take a few minutes to post a remembrance thought or two for those we left behind, which is an enduring responsibilty… to remember…

(7) On 12 April and RF-4C of the 16th TRS and 460th TRW out of Tan Son Nhut piloted by CAPTAIN ARNOLD WILLIAM LAMP and Navigated by Captain C.E. MATTERN was inexplicably lost in central South Vietnam when the aircraft went out of control (pilot disorientation?). CAPTAIN MATTERN ejected and was rescued. The fate of CAPTAIN LAMP remains a mystery but his remains were recovered after 25 years in 1993 and positively identified for burial in 1995. CAPTAIN LAMP rests at Glen Rest Memorial Estate in Reyoldsburg, Ohio….

IV… HUMBLE HOST END NOTE… The B-52 bombing of Cambodia began in mid-March 1969– OPERATION MENU. An elaborate scheme was employed to keep the exact targets (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Snack, etc.) super secret. While these operations were held close, as much to keep the facts from the world as the North Vietnamse sitting in their sanctuaries in Cambodia. But it wasn't working, at least the North Vietnamese weren't fooled… This is clipped from GENERAL ABRAMS' "Vietnam Chronicles" and notes from a Weekly Intelligence meeting in his MACV office. The conversation went like this:

ABRAMS: "Now they've apparently still got this problem on the B-52s. They've got the advance warning on it. And not only that, they know where they are going."

SOMEONE: "We can get OPSEC people to look at it again. CINCPAC's got their OPSEC group coming out here again shortly."

GOODPASTER: "It would be worth making a check in Laos whether and when we notify Vietentiane of the exact time and place of these strikes."

SOMEONE: "Normally 24 hours. And they notify Washington and everybody. Oh there's a vast network that's notified. You have to do it to even get in country."

SOMEONE ELSE: "Also Bangkok for permission to launch out of U Tapao."

SOMEONE: Their last review of this whole procedure was about six months ago, so they are due to have another one."

GOODPASTER: "I think we ought to make a special project out of it."

SOMEONE: "The enemy gave them the warning in one case about an hour and a half and in the other case four hours from the strike time."…

End snip from General Abrams logs…

Humble Host tags on the lessons apparently ignored in the employment of the B-52s…

THE PRINCIPLES OF WAR… (1) OBJECTIVE (2) OFFENSIVE (3) MASS (4) ECONOMY OF FORCE (5) MANEUVER (6) UNITY OF COMMAND (7) SECURITY (8) SURPRISE (9) SIMPLICITY…. In the case of "they know where and when we are coming"…. Humble Host refers to the Army's Field Manual 100-5 "Blueprint For the Land-Air Battle"…

SECURITY… "Security enhances freedom of action by reducing friendly vulnerably to hostile influence, or surprise. At the strategic level, security requires that active and passive security measures be taken to protect the United States and its armed Forces against espionage, subversion, and strategic intelligence collection. However, implementation of such security measures must be balanced against the need to prevent them from severing the link between the American public and its Army. … Security at the tactical level is essential to the protection and husbanding of combat power. Security results from the measures taken by a command to protect itself from surprise, observation, detection, interference, espionage, sabotage, or annoyance…. Risk is an inherent condition in war; application of the principle of security does not suggest over cautiousness or the avoidance of calculated risk."

SURPRISE… "To a large degree, the principle of surprise is the reciprocal of the principle of security. Concealing one's own capabilities and intentions creates the opportunity to strike the enemy unaware or unprepared… "

Humble Host goes to Sun Tzu on the subject… Security?…"Never permit the enemy to acquire an unexpected advantage."… Surprise?… "Strike the enemy at a time or place or in a manner, for which he is unprepared."

The conversation in General Abrams' office at his 12 April intelligence meeting made clear that the principles of Security and Surprise were absent in the planning and execution of Operation Menu… What a way to wage a war…

Lest we forget… Bear


Thanks to Mud

The acorn doesn't fall far from the tree. I remember watching Comanecci on TV. She was an astounding gymnast.

Watch this short video.

- Mud





"This Day in Aviation History" brought to you by the Daedalians Airpower Blog Update. To subscribe to this weekly email, go to

June 30, 1968

At 7:47 a.m., the first Lockheed C-5A Galaxy transport, serial number 66-8303, took off on its maiden flight at Marietta, Georgia. Chief Engineering Test Pilot Leo J. Sullivan and test pilot Walter E. Hensleigh, flight engineer Jerome H. Edwards, and E. Mittendorf, flight test engineer, made up the flight crew. U.S. Air Force test pilot Lt. Col. Joseph S. Schiele was also on board. The C-5A weighed 497,000 pounds at takeoff. After a 3,800-foot takeoff roll, it lifted off at 123 knots. It remained in takeoff configuration while it climbed to 10,000 feet at 140 knots. The flight lasted 1 hour, 34 minutes. On landing, the Galaxy's touchdown speed was 116 knots.

July 1, 1949

The Air Force established the USAF Medical Service, headed by Maj. Gen. Malcolm C. Grow, the first surgeon general of the Air Force. He was chief flight surgeon of the Army Air Corps from 1934-39. Along with Maj. Gen. Harry G. Armstrong, he founded the Aero Medical Laboratory at Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio.

July 2, 1926

Congress established the Distinguished Flying Cross, directing that it be awarded to individuals for outstanding flying achievements since April 6, 1917.

July 3, 1937

Pilot Amelia Earhart and navigator Fred J. Noonan disappeared in a Lockheed 10E Electra, NR-16020, while attempting to reach Howland Island from Lae, New Guinea. Commander in Chief, U.S. Fleet Adm. Arthur J. Hepburn dispatched Lexington (CV 2), Capt. Leigh Noyes commanding, to coordinate the search. An air group from Lexington, Saratoga (CV 3), and Ranger (CV 4) embarked on board Lexington: 10 BG-1 dive bombers of VB-4 (Ranger), 11 SBU-1 dive bombers of VS-2 (Lexington), nine SBU-1s of VS-3 (Saratoga), 14 SBU-1s of VS-41 (Ranger), nine SU-4 Corsairs of VS-42 (Ranger), nine BM-2 biplanes of VT-2 (Lexington), and one O3U-3 Corsair of Lexington Utility.

July 4, 1982

The F-16E/XL completed its first flight at Carswell AFB, Texas.

July 5, 1912

Capt. Charles deForest Chandler, 2nd Lt. Thomas D. Milling, and 2nd Lt. Henry H. Arnold became the first Army pilots to qualify as military aviators. Chandler was Daedalian Founder Member #1667, Milling was #133 and Arnold was #2182.

July 6, 1950

The U.S. Air Force conducted the first strategic air attacks of the Korean War, sending nine B–29 Superfortresses to bomb the Rising Sun oil refinery at Wonsan and a chemical plant at Hungnam in North Korea.


Thanks to Harry …and Dr. Rich. There are a couple follow on videos after this one.

Troops …

Most everyone knows of the Mosquito aircraft. Canada was at the leading edge of composite aircraft building. It's a short 5 minute look at history.


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