U.S. military forces in Viet Nam are making a concerted effort to control the roads?
LS Highway One, convoy passes Vietnamese peasants...
View down highway...
Children watch convoy...
MCU (3 shots) Driver and soldiers in jeeps
Aerial view of convoy..
MLS - Destroyed bridge..
Traveling shot - Jeep moves toward pontoon raft...
MS - Armed jeep moves onto raft..
Raft moves away...
MLS - Raft in midstream...
MS - Raft lands on opposite side of stream.
MS - Peasants take hold of rope...
Jeep drives off raft..
2 shots - Convoy moves along highway past watching peasants..
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: U.S. military forces in Viet Nam are making a concerted effort to control the roads in that country. It is estimated that the Viet Cong has complete or partial control of 80 per cent of the roads.
On Thursday (26 January), a heavily armed force of U.S. troops -- men of the 101st Airborne Division's 17th Cavalry unit, and the 326th Engineers battalion travelled over a portion of Highway number one -- in what is believed to be Viet Cong-held territory.
The U.S. convoy was made up of 135 soldiers, riding in 35 armed jeeps.
The troops were girded for a possible ambush or mines. Although the Viet Cong did not attack the convoy, and no mines were hit, the U.S. military command viewed the exercise as a "success." They were able to show the local citizenry, military command spokesman said, that the U.S. was able to secure a vital portion of a vital highway that had been controlled by the Viet Cong for years.
The U.S. military command feels that it is extremely important that its forces control Highway One, for it is considered the main traffic artery in Viet Nam. The road runs from Saigon to Hanoi, along the coast.