The 11th ACR’s M113 Gavin cross-country mobility was continually used to force the enemy out of hiding and into blocking force positions. Once the area was swept clear of VC/NVA trying to hide in closed terrain, roads became safe for civilians to pass and restore faith in the central government we were supporting. Armored assault scissors bridges mobile on tracked tanks enabled spots of road blown up by the enemy or washed out by the weather to be kept functional.
During Operation Junction City in concert with 173rd Airborne Brigades parachute jumps, the 11th ACR used bulldozers to clear the terrain to the left and right of the main roads so anyone trying to lay land mines or hand weapon ambushes would be immediately spotted from the air and attacked.
Airborne FACs with O-1 Bird Dogs (not BS UAVs) insured fighter-bomber CAS was rapidly available to the 11th ACR to pile on the bastards after they found the enemy. Note the rare Korean war combat veteran Hiller OH-23 Raven “killer bee” observation/attack helicopter
used in Vietnam to keep commanders in touch with armored ground maneuver elements; you can also see this helicopter in action in the James Bond 007 movies, “From Russia with Love” and “Goldfinger”
Black Horse Soldiers trained ARVN Soldiers how to use weapons to better defend themselves. Australian troops received OJT and swept the VC/NVA clear
11th ACR convoy escorts often prevented the VC/NVA from ambushing supply convoys in the first place. Flamethrowers on M113 Gavins (yet another capability we lack today) burned out the VC/NVA and removed vegetation for them to hide in.
NONE OF THIS TRACKED COMBAT EFFECTIVENESS CAN BE DONE IN WHEELED STRYKER OR HUMVEE WHEELED TRUCKS. The VC/NVA would kick our asses today if we tried to fight them in our current BS wheeled trucks.
Here’s an U.S. Army Command & General Staff College School of Advanced Military Studies (SAMS) report by Infantry officer, Major William Sutey on the need for cross-country MOBILITY (XCM) from M113 Gavin light tracked tanks to improve LIGHT INFANTRY FORCE mobility, protection and firepower. READ IT.