Unapologetic insolence from an aging subversive

Unapologetic insolence from an aging subversive

Wednesday, 4 March 2020


I was reunited with an old friend yesterday.

This friend weighs 51 tons on the old imperial system, and served in Vietnam in 1970.

On 22nd April that year, we encountered a bunker system at grid reference 574685.               .

After an attempt at assaulting the system, during which 4 platoon took one KIA and one WIA, the CO called in artillery support, US air support, and a light fire team.

Later on the day, a troop of tanks was introduced into the contact, but because of the thick scrub, they didn't arrive until dusk, and weren't in position to assault the system in daylight. The tank in the video (callsign 33 Bravo) was one of them.

Combining infantry and armour at night was not a good idea, so the assault was postponed until first light the next day.

The tanks certainly did the job, using canister rounds, which cleared the vegetation, and allowed a passage into the system which was destroyed by the tanks driving on to the overhead cover and grinding their tracks on it until it collapsed.

There were four bodies in the system, which had apparently acted as a hospital.

Most likely, the bulk of the occupants decamped under cover of darkness. It probably had housed forty or so.

Without the tanks, the outcome may well have been very different.

It was interesting to see and hear this beast again - a very large and noisy blast from the past.

Apologies for the quality of the video.

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