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July 08, 1972 - Image 9

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
Michigan Daily, 1972-07-08

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Saturday, July 8, 1972

THE MICHIGAN DAILY

Page Niner

US. forces build in Thailand

By The Associated Press
The United States has beefed
up its military strength in Thai-
land by 7,500 men since the
North Vietnamese offensive was
launched March 30, U.S. officials
have disclosed.
The U.S. Embassy in Bangkok
said that American forces in
Thailand now total 40,000. Most
of the increase results from the
strengthening of Air F o r c e
contingents at six Thai bases.
According to Thai officials, a
contingent of U.S. Marines has
moved secretly into northern
Thailand to prepare an unused
air base for Marine fighter-bomb-
ers.
Marine Corps vehicles have
been spotted around the N a m
Phong Air Base about 249 miles
north of Bangkok.
This coincided with reports
from Washington that Marine
squadrons recently moved into
South Vietnam to blunt the North
Vietnamese offensive would be
shifted to Nam Phong.
The reports said that t h e
Marine contingent which is to
be moved to the area around
Nam Phong totals about 1,000
men. They are being moved
from Da Nang in South V i e t-
nam.
The Marine and Air Force
units were ordered shifted to
Thailand in order to reduce U.S.
troop strength in Vietnam to the

49,000-man level ordered by Pres-
ident Nixon for July 1, Pentagon
sources in Washington said.
Although the move had the ef-
fect of removing several thous-
and airmen and support person-
nel from Vietnam, they were still
able to carry out air strikes
from their new bases.
The North Vietnamese Com-
munist party newspaper Nhan
Dan accused the Nixon admin-
istration of attempting to "hood-
wink the American people into
believing that Nixon is living up
to his timetable of troop with-
drawal from Vietnam.
"Surely the people of America
and the world will see that with-
drawing troops from-Vietnam in
order for them to wage war from
Thailand is nothing but another
farce of deceit," Nhan Dan said.
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Marine Air Base U.S. military strength in Thailand
- ---- -now totals 40,000 men, American E m-
::>: .. bassy in Bangkok discloses.,
AP Newsdeatures 1Y ,, .,
l.Vets fight for Quang Tri
as communists approach Hue

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SAIGON (P - South Vietnam-
ese troops battled for Quang
Tri yesterday but fears rose that
they might be outflanked by
communist attacks toward Hue,
the old imperial capital 32 miles
to the southeast.
The North Vietnamese seized
Checkmate, an outpost 12 miles
southwest of Hue, and pounded
nearby Fire Base Bastogne with
400 rounds of artillery fire. One
source said this could be con-
strued "as the beginning of a
major offensive against Hue."
The Saigon command announc-
ed that its forces had seized
most of the wrecked city of
Quang Tri, but field reports and
informed military sources in the
North denied this.
A senior military source said,

"We have not yet captured
Quang Tri, but it is inevitable
that it will fall. We are mopping
up, moving with caution, and we
are aware of the threat of the
western flank."
Intelligence officers have kept
a close watch on the western
front, a defense line protecting
Hue from communist troops dug
into the mountains just to the
west.
There was concern that t h
North Vietnamese might try to
outflank the government troops
moving north into Quang Tri and
circle around for a major attack
on Hue itself.
Hue has been considered a ma-
jor objective of the enemy of-
fensive.
Lt. Gen. Ngo- Quang Truong,

the South Vietnamese command-
er in the northern region, and
his staff are conscious of the
possibility of being mousetrapped
by a communist attack on their
western flanks as they m ove
northward against Quang Tri,
one senior source said.

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