The Vietcongs in its/attempted economic/strangulation against the Saigon Government have began to destroy bridges, roads and communications between the provinces and Saigon.
Soldiers on Route 15
" walking past blown up bridge ( several )
Another bridge blown up by the VC along route 15
Various shots of people crossing broken bridge I
VC blocked 28th mile, people crossing ( several )
Soldiers at blockage
Peasants clearing the blockage ( several )
Soldiers in mopping up operations ( several )
Tank destroyed by VCs ( several )
Choppers straffing VC affected area at the 68th mile.
Chopper taking off for straffing operations.
Tracking shot of damaged roads...abandoned village......
Initials tk/reuters/saigon reuters/sin
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Background: The Vietcongs in its/attempted economic/strangulation against the Saigon Government have began to destroy bridges, roads and communications between the provinces and Saigon. Worst hit are route 15, 13 and 20.
Government forces in its attempt to open route 15 was ambushed day before yesterday. The government side suffered some 20 killed; They also lost a tank. The Vietcong casualty is however not known. Fierce fighting took place some 80 kilometres from Saigon.
According to government sources, the Vietcongs numbered two battalions are lying in ambush positions near two hills about 88 kilometres from Saigon on the way to Vang Tau ( Cape St. Jacques ).
Route 15 is the road from Saigon to Vang Tau. The Vietcongs blew up seven bridges along this route and destroyed telephone wires. The VCs also destroyed some parts of the roads. Yesterday they set up road block on the 88th mile. An ice cream seller who attempted to cross the blockage was blown to bits by a VC mine. Later government forces cleared the blockage.
Fear that the Vietcongs might take over the province have started an exodus of peasants to Saigon proper. Tugging with whatever they could carry they are fleeing the provinces by the hundreds.
In the meanwhile government forces are combing areas near the 88th mile to Vang Tau. Skyraiders and armed choppers are also straffing the areas with nepalm and rockets.