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Friday, May 20, 2005

This Day in 1969 - Hamburger Hill

At 1000 hours, this day in 1969, four infantry battalions assaulted Hill 937 in Vietnam. They reached the first bunker line, which seemed deserted. Approximately a half-hour later, when they were about 75 meters from the top, they were under point-blank RPG fire, and grenades rolled at them.

The first Americans reached the top at 1145, nine days and five hours after the first contact on that hill. By the end of the day, most of the 29th NVA Regiment was dead or fleeing.

The total American casualties were 70 dead and 372 wounded.

For the next seventeen days, mopping up continued.

After the battle, one soldier wrote "Hamburger Hill" on a piece of a C-ration box, nailing it to a burnt tree trunk.

Hollywood's treatment of this battle doesn't come close to doing it justice.

For the more of the story of Hamburger Hill, see:
Hamburger Hill - The Real Story
A/101 and Hamburger Hill
Studies in Battle Command - Hamburger Hill
Hamburger Hill Revisited

Note: In my research for this post, I came across the Taps Gallery, a site that honors Vietnam's KIA's and the passings of veterans. It is a very moving tribute to those who served.

EQUIPMENT REPAIR — A U.S. Air Force C-17 Globemaster III aircraft prepares to receive 60 Kilowatt generators that are scheduled for repair from Naval Mobile Construction Battalion 24 at Al Asad, Iraq, May 17, 2005. The battalion Seabees are restoring the runway at the air base in Al Asad, which will increase the capability for air traffic and operations. U.S. Navy photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Mark H. Overstreet

In Today's News - Friday, May 20, 2005

Quote of the Day
"Bravery is the capacity to perform properly even when scared half to death."
-- General Omar Bradley

News of Note:
Judge OKs 10 more days for U.N. oil probe
Bill would tie U.S. dues to U.N. reform
Alliant tests device to stop Iraqi bombs
Soldier rushes from Iraq to daughter's graduation
Syria undermining Iraq's stability, officials say Associated Press
Senators working on filibuster compromise
Iraq calls on neighbors to stop insurgency

Seattle Post-Intelligencer: War on Iraq
Palestinian envoy dismisses Israel pullout

The US News: Iraq News
British lawyers to pursue Iraqi security forces over killings
Multiple attacks kill at least 23 in Iraq
Budget squeezes out waiver favor for Iraq widow
Iraq Army takes control of parts of Baghdad
Officer guilty of sending arms from Iraq
Reconstruction in Iraq prompts Bush to extend order...

Various Sources
Air Force officer found guilty of sending weapons home from Iraq
Iraqi prime minister calls on neighbors to help stop terrorists crossing frontier
Iranian leader urges U.S. ties


Fox News:
Bill Ties U.N. Dues to Reform
First Lady: Airspace Scare Worth Interrupting Bush Ride
U.S. Condemns British Tabloid's Saddam Photos
Saddam Blamed for Wars
Senate Panel Publishes Conflicting Bolton Report
Iraqi PM Wants Syria to Help Stop Insurgents
House Panel Backs Limiting Women in Combat Roles

Department of Defense:
Study Looks at Ops Tempo, Equipment — Story
Jointness Key to Victory in War on Terror — Story

Road Completion Sets Stage for Commerce — Story
Army Aims to Improve Mail Service for Troops — Story
Operation Quick Sweep Targets Terrorists — Story
Iraqi Ministry of Agriculture Back in Business — Story
Iraqi Army Expands Area of Operation — Story
Arctic Warriors Help Build Road, Pull Security - Story

Troops Help Clinic, Deliver School Supplies
Troops Support Balad Ruz Medical Assist Program
Army Mechanics Keep Apaches Airborne

Task Force Rock Paratroopers Repel Ambush
U.S. Troops Adopt Kids Near Charikar
A-10 Unit Continues 'Flying Tiger' Legacy

Navy Customs Inspectors Serve 100,000

Attitude Key to Soldier's Recovery - Story

NASCAR Drivers Visit Roosevelt — Story
Girl Scouts Send Cookies to Troops
Singer Toby Keith Visits Troops


Base Realignment and Closure 2005
Medal of Honor
Two Years in Iraq

Three U.S. Soldiers Die in Attacks
Roadside Bomb Kills U.S. Soldier
Iraqi Battalion Prepares for Future
Cooperation Foils Insurgents
Iraqi Army Opens Headquarters
Two Kirkuk Rail Stations Rebuilt
Success in Iraq - DoD Fact Sheet
Year in Review 2004 Fact Sheets (pdf)
Iraq Daily Update
Multinational Force Iraq
Iraq Reconstruction
Weekly Progress Report (pdf)

Former Chief Talks Afghanistan
Raid Nets Three Insurgents
Roadside Bomb Kills Afghan Troops
Afghanistan Daily Update

Pentagon 'MAJIIC' Can Share Intel
Bush Praises New Intel Director
Intel Community Faces Challenges
Myers: Zarqawi Audio 'An Outrage'
Official Debunks Desecration Story
Official: Desecration Story 'False'
Counterterrorism Focus: Africa
Waging and Winning the War on Terror
Terrorism Timeline
Terrorism Knowledge Base

Individual Ready Reserve is Key
Deployed Parents Watch Graduates
Army to Help Reshape Force
New Law Affects SGLI Payments
Unit Deploys to 5th Fleet Area
MP Gets Profile in Courage Award
System Improves Force Protection
Chairman Describes BRAC Process
National Guard, Reserve Update

from The Weather Channel

Al Azamiyah Al Basrah Al Hillah Al Karkh Al Kazimiyah Al Kut An Nasiriyah Baghdad Baqubah Mosul Najaf Nineveh Tall Kayf

Bost/Laskar Ghurian Herat Kabul Qandahar

Today in History:
1303 - The Treaty of Paris restores Gascony to the British, following the 100 Years War.
1310 - Shoes are first made for both right & left feet.
1704 - Elias Neau forms a school for slaves in New York.
1775 - Mecklenburg County, North Carolina declares its independence from Britain.
1845 - The first legislative assembly convenes in Hawaii.
1861 - Kentucky proclaims its neutrality in the Civil War.
1864 - Battle at Ware Bottom Church VA, results in 1,400 killed or injured.
1868 - The Republican National Convention meets in Chicago, and nominates Grant for President.
1874 - Levi Strauss markets blue jeans with copper rivets - cost is $13.50 / dozen.
1875 - International Bureau of Weights & Measures established by treaty
1892 - German, Italy, and Austria-Hungary form the Triple Alliance.
1902 - The U.S. military occupation of Cuba (since January, 1899) ends.
1916 - Codell, KS is hit by a tornado; it is also hit on the same date in 1917 & 1918)
1917 - The Turkish Government authorizes Jews to return to Tel Aviv & Jaffa.
1918 - Launch of the first electrically propelled warship, the New Mexico.
1926 - Congress passes the Air Commerce Act, requiring licensing of pilots & planes.
1927 - Charles Lindbergh takes off from New York to cross the Atlantic; the Treaty of Jedda grants Saudi Arabia independence from Great Britain.
1932 - Amelia Earhart leaves Newfoundland; the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic.
1939 - Pan Am begins regular transatlantic airmail and passenger service across the North Atlantic.
1940 - Igor Sikorsky unveils his invention, the helicopter.
1941 - Germany invades Crete.
1942 - The U.S. Navy first permits black recruits to serve.
1944 - The U.S. Communist Party dissolves.
1948 - The Israeli Air Force is first used, and achieves its first war victory against Syria.
1954 - Chiang Kai-shek becomes president of Nationalist China.
1959 - Japanese-Americans regain their citizenship.
1961 - A white mob attacks "Freedom Riders" in Montgomery, AL.
1969 - In Vietnam, U.S. troops capture Hill 937 - Hamburger Hill.
1970 - 100,000 march in New York in support of U.S. policies in Vietnam.
1971 - The Pentagon reports that blacks constitute 11% of the U.S. soldiers in southeast Asia.
1978 - 3 PFLP members kill a police officer near El Al airlines in Orly Airport, Paris.
1980 - 710 families in the Love Canal area, near Niagara Falls, are evacuated.
1985 - The FBI arrests John A. Walker, Jr., later convicted of spying for the U.S.S.R.
1985 - Israel exchanges 1150 Lebanese/Palestinian prisoners for 3 Israeli soldiers; the U.S. begins broadcasts to Cuba on Radio Marti.
1989 - China declares martial law in Beijing.
1990 - The Hubble Space Telescope sends its first photographs from space.
1991 - The Soviet parliament approves a law allowing citizens to travel abroad.
1992 - India launches its first satellite independently.
1993 - 1993KA, a ten-meter meteor, comes within 150,000 km of Earth.

1759 - William Thornton, architect, U.S. Capitol building
1768 - Dolley Dandridge Payne Madison, U.S. First Lady
1828 - Union Brigadier General James William Reilly
1881 - Wladyslaw Sikorski, Polish Premier, WWII general
1895 - Reginald J. "R" Mitchell, English aviation manufacturer (Spitfire)
1908 - Jimmy (James Maitland) Stewart, actor (Mr Smith Goes to Washington, It's a Wonderful Life)
1913 - William Hewlett, co-founder of Hewlett-Packard Co
1921 - John Harrison, British Vice Admiral/surgeon; John Marchi (Representative-R-NY)
1923 - Hugh Beach, British General
1925 - D. French Slaughter, Jr. (Representative-VA)
1934 - Alexei A. Leonov, cosmonaut (Voskhod 2, Apollo-Soyuz)
1944 - David M. Walker, Captain USN/astronaut (STS 51-A 30, 53, 69)
1945 - Harold E. Ford (Representative-TN); Nikolai Nikolayevich Fefelov, Russian colonel/cosmonaut; Wally Herger (Representative-CA)
1948 - John R. McKernan, Jr. (Representative / Governor-ME); Samuel Gejdenson (Representative-CT)
1949 - Nick Joe Rahall II (Representative-WV)
1951 - Michael D. Crapo (Representative-ID); Thomas D. Akers, Major USAF/astronaut (STS 41, 49, 61, 79)
1954 - Galina Vasilyevna Amelkina, doctor/cosmonaut

- Henry VI, King of England / France
1506 - Christopher Columbus, explorer, dies in poverty in Spain
1622 - Osman II, Sultan of Turkey
1648 - Wladyslaw IV, King of Poland
1834 - Marquis de Lafayette, French general
1996 - Lewis B. Combs, Naval commander/civil engineer

Reported Missing in Action:
Frits, Orville B., US Army (CA); Remains recovered May, 1967
Grammar, William Michael, USMC (OK); Remains recovered May, 1967
Keefe, Douglas O’Neil, USMC (SC)
Maddox, Notley Gwynn, USAF (IL)
Milligan, Joseph E., USAF (NJ); Released by DRV February, 1973 – alive in 1998
Smith, Homer L., USN (WV); Remains returned March, 1974
Vanloan, Jack L.,USAF (OR); Released by DRV March, 1973 – alive and well in 1998

Lehrman, Ronald J., US Army (OK); Released by Sihanouk June, 1968
Robertson, John H., USArmy SF (AL)
Tester, Jerry A., US Army (NC); Released June, 1968

Williams, James W., USAF (TN); Released by DRV March, 1973 – alive and well in 1998