Viet Cong and North Vietnamese forces in Saigon suffered a major setback on Tuesday (June 18).
Viet Cong and North Vietnamese forces in Saigon suffered a major setback on Tuesday (June 18). A record number of 120 surrendered to South Vietnamese Marines who surrounded them in a cemetery in the suburb of Gia Dinh.
The advancing South Vietnamese drove the Viet Cong-North Vietnamese unit into the cemetery and quickly cut off all exits of escape. Murderous fire from the ground and the helicopter gunships was directed at the holdouts for several days.
Every few minutes the Marines would call on the beleaguered force to surrender. Promise es of safety and treatment for wounds were boomed to the trapped troops from sound trucks with loud speakers.
After unsuccessfully trying to break out of the trap, Viet Cong began surrendering. At first those surrendering had to dodge fire from their own officers. After 47 were killed the whole unit laid down arms and surrendered. Many prisoners were wounded. They had not eaten for days and South Vietnamese civilians gave them rice.
It was the largest single surrender of Viet Cong and North Vietnamese. Allied military sources said at least 57 prisoners were North Vietnamese.