14 September - 15 October 1969
Captain Mike Battle
operation will be remembered by the numbers of Hoi Chanhs'
(VC defectors) and illegal settlers who were encourage to
rally to the government.
With the fire
base established in an old Teak plantation south of the Thua
Tich village site and code named "Ben," the rifle companies,
less D Company, deployed in AO (Area of Operations) "Max"
with the task of locating and destroying D445 (again?!). D
Company and the Intelligence Officer were placed under
command of Task Force Headquarters and moved to Dat Do
district. Early in the operation, before our intentions and
dispositions became obvious, the enemy were forced into
several contacts, particularly pleasing were those with D445
along the Song Rai stream.
Company operating along Route 327 in the Xaun Son area, were
very successful in handling the VC farmers. large numbers of
these farmers who were working in 'Production Cells' for the
VC, were forced into returning to the government by large
volumes of artillery and mortar fires each night. The
situation was ticklish in that armed guerrillas were with
the farmers and their families. It was normally impossible
to tell one from the other until a fire fight broke out.
Close liaison was maintained with the Vietnamese District
Chief (who processed and documented the returnees) at his
headquarters at Duc Thanh. After the first week or so, it
became obvious that there were very few actual enemy in AO
Max. Accordingly the battery was split, and a section, with
a section of mortars moved to support bases Eva, Colleen and
then to Bruiser to support companies as they moved out of
range of the guns.
October, after being on the operation for thirty two days,
the battalion was airlifted back to Nui Dat. B and D
Companies were moved by RAAF
Caribou aircraft from
Xuyen Moc airstrip. Operation Kingston verified reports that
D445 had its base on the Song Rai. The Quang Giao and Xuen
Son guerrilla units became ineffective because of thirty two
"Hoi Chanhs", and food procurement by the major enemy units
was considerably reduced by the return of the "Production
all, contacts were scarce, Operation Kingston probably
succeeded in keeping D445 and D440 LF battalions off-balance
and disrupted any planned offensives in the near future.
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