Battle Of Phuoc Yen

Screaming Eagles terminated Operation Carentan II on May 17.  The paratrooper forces killed 2,100 NVA, captured 157 prisoners and 581 enemy weapons during the 47 day operation around Hue." Relieve the pressure from the area around Hue," was their standing order and the Airborne Infantrymen did just that as their highly mobile fighting units continually maintained pressure on the enemy and discouraged any future attack of the old Imperial City.

As a prelude to Phuoc Yen, the classic cordon operation of the Vietnam war, paratroopers from the 2nd Bn., 501st Abn. Inf. followed two Viet Cong into the village of Thon Kim D

Immediately the village was sealed off allowing artillery and airstrikes to pound the enemy force. 

The first day yielded 21 enemy bodies.  Illumination continued through the night as the trapped enemy unit tried to exfiltrate the village.  The following day found airborne riflemen firing into the village while air strikes and artillery continued to batter the remaining NVA. The day's results were 47 NVA killed. The final day saw the 2nd Brigade troopers sweeping the village and raising the total body count to 95.

The tactic of cordoning a village continued to develop through the 2nd Brigade and the coastal plains operations. The concept consists of keeping the companies in constant sweeping motions and still within striking distance of each other. Then when a lucrative target is found artillery and air strikes contain the enemy until additional airborne units are airlifted to the area sealing off any possible escape routes.

The classic cordon of the Vietnam war occurred on April 28, around the village of Phuoc Yen.

The Phuoc Yen battle began with units from the 2nd Brigade trapping the 8th Bn, 90th NVA Reg in the stocking area of the Song Bo River, 2 miles northwest of Hue.  For four days, companies from three 2nd Brigade battalions, plus local Popular Forces (PF's), and the "Black Panther" Company of the 1st ARVN Division, lay siege to the stocking shaped village complex that intelligence sources said was harboring an NVA battalion.

The paratroopers were joined by the batteries of the 21st Artillery, helicopter gunships, and Air Force fighter-bombers.  By morning of the fifth day, the NVA body count reached 419, and another 107 became the NVA force to surrender en masse to an American unit in the history of the war..

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