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03-09-2010, 04:53 AM   #226
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Just found this thread and I'm reading it on a eager way, so rich it is.

I will comming back looking for more images and also commentary.

Thanks Bob

03-09-2010, 03:28 PM   #227
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Really BAD PIXX

Before giving the descriptions on the latest pix, I'd like to say that my biggest problem is undoubtedly a lack of PS skills. The crappy scanner doesn't help, but without the knowledge, trying to get the proper corrections applied to the scans is difficult.
In our printing business, we scan lots of stuff, but I'm used to working with "hardcopy" rather than film and generall the originals are much larger sizes to start with. I had a pretty good flatbed scanner several years ago and scanned some of my medium format stuff with pretty good results, but 35mm transparencies are a different animal.
That said, let's look at some really bad pictures that time has really taken its toll on.

1. Aussie Infantryman: This shot is one I took while on an operation with the Royal Australian Infantry. These guys were some of the best I've ever soldiered with and they treated us like family the whole time we were with them. Their field rations SUCK though. I just couldn't develop a taste for cold corned mutton! Like us, they were all young and were trying to do their job as best they could. If we've still got any Aussie fans here; just know that I know what Long Tan Day is and remember it every year.

2. SF Soldier Posed: This is one of those "special assignments" I got stuck with once. Dept. of the Army wanted some pictures of new equipment, etc. as though they were really taken in the field. The dead giveaway though, is the soldier's uniform ...... hell it's clean and unwrinkled! DA didn't like photos that showed the soldiers in an unkempt state. I guess the clowns that run wars want to try and convince people that the soldier is always cleanly shaven, well fed, and well clothed.

3. My Home for the Night: This is a snapshot I took of our shelter while we were with the Aussies. This one's in really bad shape, but you can make out that we slept on the ground under a small poncho rigged to keep the rain off us. The clothes and socks are hanging in the sun on a piece of parachute cord hung between a couple of trees. That change of socks is all we carried .... one pair on your feet and another pair washed in a stream or whatever and hanging wherever might be convenient.

One of our posters earlier commented on the difference between the soldiers then and now. I've also noticed that. In Nam' we had no body armour although some units (particularly Marines) wore flak jackets in the field. The would prevent injury from grenade fragments, but that's it! They were useless for small arms fire or artillery fragments. For that reason, most of the units with which I operated simply left them behind as they were horribly heavy and hot. As the poster said, we went out in our shirtsleeves and tried to take care of business! The age thing the poster mentioned also struck a chord with me. In Nam', we were young .... sometimes as young as 17 or 18. Most of the soldiers deployed now appear much older than that.
I'll go for now and see if I can dig up some more stuff to get scanned over the course of the next few days.
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03-11-2010, 02:18 AM   #228
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Hi Bob,

from various replies here, I know there are many Australian fans of your story. I'm one of them. My next-door neighbour was in 7RAR (Nui Dat mainly, I think). He has nightmares even now.

Richard.
03-11-2010, 11:14 PM   #229
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Most of the American and South Vietnamese troops have helmets in your photos.
The Aussie above didn't even bother with one of those.

You know, the 1960's and 70's were a different time. Heck cars didn't have seat belts until the late 60's did they? But can you imagine the outcry if our troops in Ira and Afghanistan just went about in their fatigues - no armor?

On the other hand, can you imagine how hot it is in regulation body armor and kevlar helmets in Iraq's 114 - 120 degree days? The Brits fought in India in short pants for crying out loud.

Regardless of the war, the endurance of soldiers goes beyond what we think humans can stand. We owe them years of thanks for that.

03-14-2010, 04:53 PM   #230
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Aussies don't need helmets, they're built-in!!
03-15-2010, 06:39 AM   #231
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I KNEW there had to be a KIWI in there to comment on the Aussies! I've got to see if I can't find some shots I took when I was with the Kiwis.
03-15-2010, 10:37 PM   #232
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I knew one of the Battle of Long Tan vets: Cpl. Laurie Drinkwater. We all respected him greatly, especially on ANZAC day.

http://cas.awm.gov.au/photograph/FOR/66/0668/VN

Dan.

Last edited by dosdan; 03-16-2010 at 04:50 AM.
03-16-2010, 04:32 PM   #233
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QuoteOriginally posted by Arpe Quote
Aussies don't need helmets, they're built-in!!
I heard the VC had a special trick for flushing out the Kiwis, they'd make a noise like a sheep with it's head stuck in a fence and the Kiwis would come running

03-16-2010, 04:53 PM   #234
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Hi Bob,

When I first saw this thread appear I assumed it was a link to an news article by a photojournalist in Iraq or Afghanistan today so I ignored it thinking it wouldn't be anything new but the thread kept appearing at the top of the list and had accumulated an impressive number of replies and views so last week I thought I'd see what all the fuss was about and clicked on it. Boy, I'm glad I did! I've spent hours reading the whole thread and have really enjoyed it all. Thanks for taking the time to share your photos and recollections. I look forward to reading more from you.

I visited Viet Nam as a tourist a couple of years ago, it certainly is a beautiful place (damn hot though) and the people were open and friendly, I took more people shots there than I have any other place. I met an American Vet on a dive trip out of Nha Trang, he seemed to be finding the experience of being back a bit tough but his wife thought it was doing him good. Any plans/desires to return one day?

Cheers,
Mike
03-17-2010, 06:05 AM   #235
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Hi Bob
Thanks for the great thread. It has taken quite a few nights to get there due to its size.

James
03-17-2010, 10:21 AM   #236
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I just knew the Aussies and Kiwis would eventually exchange barbs .... they did the same thing in Nam! Funny stuff! The Kiwis always told me that "at least our ancestors aren't a bunch of bloody convicts"!
03-17-2010, 12:40 PM   #237
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Hillerby,
I'm new to the forum and just stumbled across your stories. I am subscribing and would be honored to hear and see more from you.
Thank you for your service!
Sam
03-17-2010, 05:24 PM   #238
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QuoteOriginally posted by hillerby Quote
I just knew the Aussies and Kiwis would eventually exchange barbs .... they did the same thing in Nam! Funny stuff! The Kiwis always told me that "at least our ancestors aren't a bunch of bloody convicts"!
Yeah, not much changes in that regard.
03-17-2010, 07:20 PM   #239
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QuoteOriginally posted by hillerby Quote
I just knew the Aussies and Kiwis would eventually exchange barbs .... they did the same thing in Nam! Funny stuff!
Aussies & Kiwis fight between themselves like two brothers but, like two brothers we look after each other. The Aussies in the Battle of Long Tan would surely have been slaughtered without the fire support of the Aussie, NZ and US Artillery. Air support was almost impossible due to the torrential rain.


From Battle of Long Tan - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The soldiers of D Company held their line and repulsed any VC that got through the artillery barrage. D Company were supported by 24 105 mm and 155 mm guns from the Australian 1st Field Regiment, the 161st Battery, Royal New Zealand Artillery and the U.S. 2nd Battalion, 35th Artillery Regiment. Over 3,000 rounds of artillery were fired throughout the remainder of the battle, at likely Communists forming-up positions and withdrawal routes. "A" Battery, 1st Field Regiment fired rounds every 15 seconds for three hours. The U.S. gunners were in the same base as "A" Battery and assisted the exhausted Australian gunners by carrying artillery rounds to their guns.


Captain Maurice Stanley, Lance-Bombardier Murray Broomhall and Signaller Willie Walker were part of a New Zealand artillery FO party attached to 6RAR during the battle. IMHO, Morrie Stanley must receive praise for his magnificent performance as FO.

A movie about this battle will hopefully be released in 2011. I hope the NZ & US guys get the credit they truly deserve. A true story of ordinary boys who became extraordinary men. | Battle of Long Tan Blog


From http://www.battleoflongtan.com/LongTanFactSheet.pdf


Four artillery batteries from 1 Field Regiment at Nui Dat were used in the battle
o 6 x M101A1 105mm L1A1 guns of 161 Field Battery, Royal New Zealand Army
o 6 x M101A1 105mm guns of 103 Field Battery, Royal Australian Army
o 6 x M101A1 105mm guns of 105 Field Battery, Royal Australian Army
o 6 x M109 Self Propelled 155mm guns of A Battery, 2/35th Howitzer Battalion, US Army

Artillery at Nui Dat fired almost non-stop for 5 hours in support of the battle
o Regimental Fire Missions (involving all 18 Australian & NZ artillery guns firing at once and at some stages all six of the US guns as well) had not been fired since the Korean war and will probably never be fired again
o Lightning twice hit the artillery positions
o Two artillery gunners passed out from cordite fumes from the guns as the fumes could not disperse due to the weather
o Artillery fire was eventually being brought in "Danger Close" to within 50 metres of the Australian positions


The Battle of Long Tan

Gunline Story "The ammunition expended during the three hour period was 3198 rounds of 105mm and 242 rounds of 155mm fired by the medium guns."

FO's Story

NZ Story

OC's Story

Dan.

Last edited by dosdan; 03-18-2010 at 04:24 AM.
03-18-2010, 12:32 AM   #240
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QuoteOriginally posted by dosdan Quote
Aussies & Kiwis fight between themselves like two brothers but, like two brothers we look after each other.
I concur .
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