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Operation Attleboro
Part of the Vietnam War
US Infantry Deploy from UH-1D Vietnam
Infantrymen attacking out of a UH-1D helicopter during Operation Attleboro.
Date September 14–November 24, 1966
Location Northwest of Dau Tieng, South Vietnam
Result U.S. victory
Flag of the United States United States
Flag of South Vietnam South Vietnam
Flag of Vietnam North Vietnam
FNL Flag Viet Cong
Commanders and leaders
Flag of the United States Guy S. Meloy
William E. DePuy
Units involved
United States 196th Light Infantry Brigade
1st Infantry Division
4th Infantry Division
27th Infantry Regiment
FNL Flag9th Vietcong Division
Vietnam101st NVA Regiment
Casualties and losses
155 killed and 494 wounded US report: 2,130 killed
44 POW

Operation Attleboro was a search and destroy operation by the 196th Light Infantry Brigade. The operation was named after Attleboro, Massachusetts, where the brigade had been formed. Operation Attleboro turned out to be the largest series of air mobile operations to date and involved all or elements of the 196th Light Infantry Brigade, 25th Division 1st Infantry Division, a brigade of the 4th Division, as well as numerous Army of the Republic of Vietnam and Regional Forces/Popular Forces and Nungs. In the end, the operation became a Corps operation commanded by II Field Forces. U.S. military spokesmen claimed that the most significant result of Operation Attleboro was the severe blow struck against the communists' supply system.

This operation was divided into two phases. Initial fighting was light. In late October, U.S. forces consisting of the 196th and the 1st Battalion of the 27th Infantry Regiment encountered the 9th Viet Cong Division, resulting in a major three-day battle. Fighting was then taken over by the 1st Infantry Division. The most significant fighting occurred when Viet Cong forces assaulted the U.S. perimeter at Suoi Da on November 8. The assault was defeated by artillery and air strikes. Afterwards, a large Viet Cong base camp was detected. It was certainly one of the largest hauls to date in the Vietnam War: the American forces seized two million pounds of rice; 116 transportation bicycles; approximately 25,000 Chinese-made hand grenades (many containing tear gas); 481 M18 Claymore anti-personnel mines; 80 rocket launchers; 25 machine guns; a myriad number of pistols; rifles like AKMs and AK-47s; clothing; tobacco; miscellaneous foods like cooking oil and salt and fish; and bountiful gallons worth of petroleum.


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