Since February of this year, destroyers if the United States Navy have been operating off the coast of the Democratic Republic of Viet Nam (North Viet Nam), shelling targets on shore.
Since February of this year, destroyers if the United States Navy have been operating off the coast of the Democratic Republic of Viet Nam (North Viet Nam), shelling targets on shore. Newsmen were permitted to film this operation for the first time of Wednesday (April 26).
The targets during this operation were a military area, (not further identified to newsmen) and a radar site, both on Mui Doc, a cape 60 miles north of the demilitarized border zone.
The destroyer Ault (the ship from which these films were taken) was assigned to fire on the two targets, while the destroyers Sheltor and Collett were told to suppress the fire of shore batteries.
The ships fired from six miles off shore. From signal bridge, with high powered binoculars observers could pick out observation towers, radio pasts, a white stucco house with a red tile roof and fishermen pushing their sampans off the beaches into the gentle surf.
As they neared the target area the ships began to take evasive action, steering a herringbone pattern in the water so that shore batteries would have a harder time hitting them.
Finally, with two spotter planes circling over the target, the captain gave the order to fire. On the beach, small plumes of smoke appeared, then two white columns at least 250 feet high.
The captain said they were secondary explosions, probably ammunition stores at a shore battery. The ships' guns were redirected to the radar site. Then they sped back to sea, having fired 350 shells in a little less than one hour.
Both targets had been destroyed according to U.S. Navy spotters.