South Vietnamese government tanks and infantry have been pressing on with their campaign to clear the northern approaches to Saigon of Communist troops.
GV Tanks and armed personnel carriers along highway (5 shots)
GV & ZOOM into tanks
GV Air strike
GV Tanks and troops advancing (8 shots)
GV & MV tanks firing machine guns into rubber plantation (3 shots)
GV Troops waiting to advance
GV Troops advancing into rubber plantation (2 shots)
Initials SC/145 SC/244
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Background: South Vietnamese government tanks and infantry have been pressing on with their campaign to clear the northern approaches to Saigon of Communist troops.
The Communists swept down into the area last week, and both sides have been engaged in artillery duels across the Thi Tinh river. Government aircraft were also involved in theoffensive, striking positions occupied by Viet Cong and North Vietnamese units some 25 miles (40 kilometres) for Saigon.
On the second day of the offensive on Tuesday (21 May), government troops and armoured personnel carriers moved into the Bo La Rubber plantation on Highway 14 where the Communist forces were thought to have taken cover.
The area ???cu??ed by the Communist forces is known as the "Iron Triangle", believed to contain some of the Communists' best weaponry, and pocked with bunkers. The Communists took three government positions and were well entrenched in the area within hours.
The government offensive was aimed at relieving the encircled town of Phu Giao near the Bo La plantation.
The Saigon command was keeping secret the details of the strength and movement of its forces. Newsmen were barred at times from entering the conflict area.
The basic riddle for the Government forces was the whereabouts of the main units of the Communist force. The force was reportedly backed by tanks -- the closest Communist tanks have come to the South Vietnamese capital.
The riddle was clearly evident at the Bo La plantation. The Communist artillery men appeared to have melted away.